Spot the difference between Lamy Turquoise and Pacific ink

What is the difference between Lamy Turquoise and Pacific?

Spot the difference between Lamy Turquoise and Pacific ink

It's here! First Lamy Special edition of 2017!!!

Lamy Pacific has just arrived. Pens do look stunning! This special edition does come with matching ink which comes as T10 cartridges form or T52 bottle.

We have quickly unpacked the delivery  – yes, I did scream a little 🙂 these are the highlights of my work day 🙂 and started testing. Pacific colour on the pens does impress. It is vibrant, bright turquoise. This edition has silver accents, so the clip and nib are both steel.

Ink cartridges are yet to come, but we did receive the bottles – excited to see them I posted the pictures on social media and people responded immediately with a question : what is the difference between Turquoise and Pacific ink?? I am happy to report the findings 🙂

Have a look for yourself 🙂

They do look almost identical, right?

We have reached out to Lamy and asked the question and they have confirmed that Pacific and Turquoise inks are indeed the same. Packaging is slightly different – Pacific gets the ‘special edition’ treatment 🙂

Lamy Al-Star Pacific

Lamy Al-Star 2017 – Sneak Peek

Hi folks,

Pen enthusiasts every year speculate about the new colours of Lamy Al-Star and Safari. I love these pens, so I have been following the rumors of ‘another green’ with great joy 🙂 Al-Star colour for 2017 has now been confirmed and …. drumroll please … it is bright turquoise called PACIFIC! Lamy will release fountain pens, matching rollerball & ballpoint pens, ink in T10 cartridges and European market should get a big T52 bottle of special edition ink on 1st of February 2017.

Here is a sneak peek…


Mishka (^_~)

Lamy Al-Star Pacific
Bureau 2015 Stationery Awards

The Bureau 2015 Stationery Awards

Our Top 10 New Products of the Year

This is the 4th Annual Bureau Stationery Awards and each year we chose our top products of the year. The only criteria is that they are new to our range during the past 12 months, and we vote on whatever basis we chose – price, value, style, function, innovation, cute-ness. Whatever we like in a product. The votes are then compiled and a winner’s list announced. This year with so many more staff we extended the awards to a Top 10. So without further ado, here are the winners and runners-up.


Nos. 10 to 8

The Bureau Top 10 of 2015 awards_no9 awards_no8

In 10th place was the useful-yet-fun smile clips from Ohto of Japan. Why clip papers together with boring old paperclips when these smiley faces will do the job for you?

In 9th place it was the Nuuna Glow in the Dark notebooks. Give them a good charge of natural light and flick the switch to watch it glow. Fun, but these are seriously nice notebooks as well.

In 8th place it was that old favourite, the Lamy Safari fountain pen. Why? Because this year’s limited edition (sorry, special edition) colour was Neonlime. Now sold out sadly but look out for a new special edition colour in April 2016!


Nos. 7 to 6

The Bureau Top 10 of 2015 awards_no6

Getting down towards the serious end of the voting, in 7th place was the fairly new arrival of Diamine Shimmer Ink. Ten colours of rather wonderful ink each with its own metallic shimmer inside.

In 6th place was another recent arrival – Maste washi tape from Mark’s Tokyo Edge. This is an alternative brand of washi tape, and whilst it is a direct rival to our favourite MT tape, we chose it for the very different designs it brought to the party, from baby pandas to cosmic rainbows.


And now the Top 5

The Bureau Top 10 of 2015

In 5th place was the only one of our Stationery Compilations to make it into the Top 10, but it was a very popular choice with the customers too. Known as Compilation No.10 it was made up of a Lamy Vista fountain pen and a bottle of the Herbin 1670 Anniversary Ink, it was packaged in a nice Lamy gift bag and made a good gift as well. The Vista was chosen as it is the pen of choice round the Bureau office – last count saw almost everyone with one (except me) – and because the clear barrel shows off the stunning Herbin ink to its best.

The Bureau Top 10 of 2015

Talking of Herbin Anniversary Ink, look what came in at number 4. Yes, the new Emerald of Chivor ink was the fourth colour in this amazingly popular range of inks and proved another big hit. Faisal’s gorgeous shot of the tempest-like ink says it all.

The Bureau Top 10 of 2015

And so to the Top 3 and in 3rd place it was the fun and playful Midori paperclips. As always, fun doesn’t mean frivolous as they are still a paperclip and serve a useful purpose around the office. But still, a paperclips shaped like a penguin or a cat? Surely makes you smile more than a boring old paperclip?

The Bureau Top 10 of 2015

And in 2nd place was the simply phenomenal Palomino pencil. Added to the range with a degree of uncertainty – after all, we have to sell them in boxes of 12 and they’re something of a punt if you’re unsure – they have proved such a success. The vote was for the three ‘core’ pencils in the range – the softer Blackwing, the harder 602 and the middle-of-the-range Pearl. There are also some limited editions out there such as the brand new 1138 edition, but we voted for the classics and they are a worthy second place.

The Bureau Top 10 of 2015

And so, to a trumpet fanfare, here is our Number One choice. And in true Bureau style we have voted for something you cannot buy. The special edition Copperorange Lamy Al-Star fountain pen was an object of beauty, rich and metallic and such a shame that it sold out in weeks. Maybe that added to the mystique around the pen? Anyway, as with the Lamy Safari we are due a new special edition in 2016 – look out for Charged Green sometime around February (think of a metallic lime-y green).

Click here to view the 3rd Annual Awards in 2014

Click here to view the 2nd Annual Awards in 2013




You know nothing John Snow

Handwriting course week 3

Everything I know is about to change….that’s why I have picked this title.

Just when I’m starting to get comfortable with all the drills, letters and connections we took a 180-degree turn.

Things are about to get ugly in order to get better. My tutor handed out the printouts of different writing styles and let people choose. I got just one piece of paper…with….s-p-e-n-c-e-r-i-a-n-s-t-y-l-e!!!!! 😮 (If you don’t know what Spencerian is I urge you, look it up!) Luckily, it was just a joke! She wasn’t messing around when I got second piece of paper with Angular Italic writing style – apparently that is the one I HAVE TO GO FOR. Why? Why? I honestly don’t know…perhaps so I can use my custom grind Lamy 2000 fountain pen? That is not the reason, but it’s what I keep telling myself 😉

I used to do something similar last summer in my Leuchtturm dot notebook – looking at these letters now I had no idea what I was doing 🙂 Here is an example of how not to connect letters…

my old notebooks, full of wrong letters 🙂

What happens next? No more 1-hour drills. Just warm up and start writing, every line counts. My goal is to think, breathe, write in Angular Italic. When I’m not writing, I am doing virtual flicks with my hand…Building awareness and consciousness just like muscle memory. Surprising, isn’t it? Everything I write down from now on has to be 100%. That is the hard part, to concentrate on every stroke. Writing sentences, seems so far away :))))))) perhaps in next life! So far I can do letters: l,i,t,u,y,n,m,h,b 🙂

If you follow my story, you know that I bought Seyes handwriting book. These are great when your writing is all over the place. Clairefontaine is fountain pen friendly paper of superb quality. Problem is, that you can’t just get one and start writing because they do not come with a guide. You are in for a surprise when you open the book, so many lines! So complicated! These lines are supposed to help you keep the size of your letters consistent. Here is what I have picked up on Instagram this week. A neat little “how to use French grid aka Seyes paper” :

platignum pen
Seyes – French grid

Lower case bodies go up to the first line
dt loops go up to the second line
Capitals and bfhkl loops go up to the third line
Hoops of fgjpqy (z) go down two lines

Best advice: my initial goal of slowing down has transformed into never rush any writing. I am also staying away from hoops and loops for now.

Shopping list: if you see a nice Italic letter S, please do let me know 😉

So many questions this week…Will I be able to use 1.1mm nib again? How will I implement this new style into everyday writing? I honestly cannot wait to see what the next lesson will bring.

Mishka (^_~)

Click here to read the next chapter of my Handwriting course

National Stationery Show

London Stationery Show 2015

My visit to #LSS15

To see our 2016 coverage of #LSS16 click here

Last week was amazing. We have been delighted to see our friends celebrate National Stationery Week! World Stationery Day fell on Wednesday, the day of the show.

Unlike other people, I did not go to sleep the night before the show because I was buzzing with excitement 🙂
I have walked around and talked to people, had a really nice time. Following stationery got my attention and I would like to share them with you:

Amodex ink remover

Amodex ink & stain remover is a great product that Bureau sells already, perhaps more people should know about it. If you ever get an ink stain on your shirt, all you have to do is to throw it away and buy another one. Just kidding! Apply Amodex for couple of minutes and give it a wipe. Stain will be gone. It works on all sorts of surfaces and will remove Sharpie even from the white boards (yes, we have all been there…) My only beef with Amodex is that it is a single serving friend…stains happen, especially with ink. So they came out with a travel size* which looks like a mascara (don’t mix with real mascara) and you get around 5 uses out of them. If you like watching demonstrating videos on Youtube, then definitely search for Amodex, it’s good fun! 🙂

*NB – this isn’t on sale at Bureau Direct yet – due soon we hope!

I have seen hundreds of different MT tape designs. This tape has found it’s way to every house hold and every bag.  If you haven’t heard of washi tape you need to ask youself: Where have you lived in the past year? The number of  MT tape rolls I own are now in double digits, yet I still need more. Jo, could we please get the Airmail one?

Quiver pen holder

Another American stationery that I was curious to see in real life was Quiver, leather pen holder. Their products are so neat and very much loved in USA…perhaps we will carry them one day. (I am not a one pen person, but maybe you are…) According to Bob from Quiver, these make amazing corporate gifts – over to you Faisal 🙂

It was really nice to talk to Fisher Spacepen people. I had informed them, that their video about “How a Fisher Space Pen helped save The Apollo 11 Mission” is trending. What a better marketing than pen saving lives in space?! Beat that!

Had a quick pit stop at the Lamy stand. I am a big fan of Lamy. They had their two big releases of the year 2015 already (Copperorange Al-Star and Neonlime Safari) but apparently there is one more surprise waiting for us in September. (disclaimer: please do not expect a purple Safari…)

Next up, long chat with ink makers J. Herbin. I have invited myself to their factory and introduced myself as Herbin 1670 Anniversary ink ambassador 🙂 Stormy Grey has been the most anticipated product of the year and got a lot of people back to writing with fountain pens. And for that they deserve a medal. It was also nice to hear that Bureau had sold the most Stormy Grey of all retailers in the world. Nice one!

midori colour notebook
Midori notebook

I have tried a lot of different papers too. It’s amazing to have so many to chose from. All of them got inked with my Broad Japanese Pilot Vanishing Point. Some of them couldn’t take the wet line, some of them could…what really surprised me was a tiny Midori wirebound A7 journal with colour paper (green of course). It handled the ink like a pro, looked super cute and the brass wire looked stunning. I really hope we will be able to get those one day. For now I will cherish mine which came with a sausage dog D-clip, SCORE!

It was a nice surprise to see Herlitz making it’s way…perhaps less known in UK, but it is the brand that I grew up with and I would buy it again.

Journals and diaries are absolute essentials these days. It was interesting to see Filofax and their fountain pen friendly paper. Paper is cut in a special way, so it can be removed and then put back/filed. Not bad, not bad at all…

organise us
Organise-Us diary

But the one diary that I would like us to carry comes from Organise-Us. Interesting September to December format (which might not be for everyone), beautiful leather covers, pearlescent insides, all made in UK, even the box. We should put that on a map. Champagne gold ‘Notes before bed’ is one of my favourite items from the show.

I would like to end this virtual tour with four outstanding stationery bytes 🙂

Wow effect prize goes to Pentel Energel quick drying gel pen. I could not believe my eyes…this ink dries out instantly. No more smearing, no more inky hands – that’s great news for all you lefties out there. I also have to mention that their colours are bright and very well saturated. I have landed this amazing orange pen and I LOVE IT!

Prize for the most desirable item of the show…tough one….no, not really 🙂 The world stopped spinning as soon as I saw Hobonichi. Japanese journal with Tomoe River paper. For some reason it reminds me of Bible… Paper, pen and ink are my Holy Trinity, so why not. I don’t journal, but to have one of these in my hands I wanted to. I was so inspired that I wanted to start writing right away. To quote one of my instagram friends Gabriel: “I didn’t know I need one, but now I do” sums up Midori and what they do…it’s just perfect.

The best writer of the show…again, this one is a no brainer. I love fountain pens, so this was a perfect opportunity to
try e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g. And I did 🙂 New ink which contains glycerin, rare Kaweco gold nib, prototype fire kissed nib
too…but, none of those wrote as well as Stabilo Easybirdy. The concept is fantastic – everybody has a different grip, so why not have a pen with adjustable nib which helps with writing experience. I will have to present this pen (once it
arrives, thank you Stabilo!) to my handwriting tutor and see what she thinks : are we making things too easy for kids? Or are we actually helping their little hands?

Conklin Crescent filler pen
Conklin Crescent filler pen

And finally…the must buy…well this one is going to be quite obvious, it’s a pen. Not any pen, Mark Twain’s Conklin Crescent filler pen. It’s a modern reproduction of a famous vintage pen. Work of art, And yes, I need to have it…

One last thing, I have been challenged by Charlie from Manuscript to turn his pen into an eye-dropper aka demonstrator (along with Lamy Vista). Challenge accepted!

Mishka (^_~)

ps: I have left quite a few of my birdys around the stationery show 🙂 Here are few of them:

Mishka's birds
Mishka’s calling card
Pelikan Edelstein Amethyst Ink

Ink of the Year 2015

Mishka unboxes Pelikan’s Edelstein Amethyst ‘Ink of the Year’ for 2015

We have some really really really big news for you!

I have opened a delivery of Pelikan’s brand new ink of the year! Every single box of ink came individually wrapped and I got the entire office buzzing. Dominic deeply regrets that he didn’t record my excitement….

Pelikan Edelstein Amethyst Ink

So what’s the story behind it?

Pelikan have a regular line of Edelstein ink and every year they release one colour that is named as the ‘Ink Of The Year.’

The 2015 ink is very special because Pelikan launched an online competition where you could go and mix your own ink colours and also vote for creations of others. What a great idea!

The result of this public vote is Amethyst, another gemstone related ink following on from the Garnet, Turmaline and Amber shades from the previous 3 years.

Pelikan Edelstein Amethyst Ink

Bottle – It is absolutely stunning. Without a doubt this is the best looking ink bottle out there 🙂 (my fourth…ahem…I can stop collecting any time )

Pelikan Edelstein Amethyst Ink

Colour  – The name Amethyst suits it well. It’s a dark purple ink and it goes really well with the rest of Pelikan’s luxurious range.

Pelikan Edelstein Amethyst Ink

Shading – Perhaps one of the most desirable properties. Colour of ink goes from light to dark.

Pelikan Edelstein Amethyst Ink

Sheen – This topic reminds me some sort of mythical creature which nobody has seen, but everybody talks about. Amethyst has a strong metallic green one. It only shows on certain paper, under certain light and angle. Once you see it, it’s love at the first sight <3

Pelikan Edelstein Amethyst Ink

Pen match -That’s easy! Lamy Al-Star Purple. Finding a good ink and pen match makes me happy 🙂 This is a match made in heaven.


Mishka (^_~) & photographer Faisal (^_^)

See more on the Pelikan Edelstein Ink and buy it at Bureau Direct here


National Stationery Week Competition – The Winners

We had a fantastic response to our competition last week, hopefully a sign of how popular stationery is today. After going through all the entries we have decided on the winner, plus the 9 runners-up.

“I’m a stationery addict because…”

The Winner

the winner

Despite a lot of competition, we just loved this entry. It conveys the impact of stationery addiction very well. Oh, and it gave me a rather nice title that I might just adopt from now on. Click on the image to see it in its full glory.

Congratulations to Chichi Parish who won the Herbin Tempete fountain pen. You might also be interested in her website.

The Runners-Up

In no particular order, the runners-up were:

“…it’s safe, legal, non fattening and my dealer is available online 24 hours a day.”

Michael Alderton won a set of 4 Paperways notepads

We say: We loved the idea of being seen as a dealer


“…I have an ASBO that prevents me from entering stationery shops (well I wish I did as I would be so much richer). I have a better equipped home office than any office i’ve ever worked in (or was until I got my hands on the stationery catalogue). If i never buy another pad, pencil, coloured paper, card in my life I will be self sufficient. I have often wondered if I should start SA – but if I did we would just end up discussing who has the best, most fun stationery around.”

Maria Netley won a set of the new Field Notes Shelterwood notebooks

We say: Anyone who can fit in the idea of a stationery ASBO had to win a prize.


“…I know I’m a stationery addict because I have 41 (and counting) brand new notebooks of varying sizes that are just too nice to write notes in…! (It can’t just be me, surely??!)”

Jo Coulson won a set of Papelote Amok notebooks

We say: An appropriate sense of the power of stationery addiction – untouched notebooks!


“…I want to leave something behind for the archaeologists of the future to read whilst they are thinking of how to extract a 200 year old email.”

 Michael Waddington won a Herbin Pen-&-Ink Set

Surely says it all in the struggle for paper vs digital?


“…I have made a pilgrimage to a seven storey stationery shop in Tokyo!”

Heather Dontenville (via Twitter) won an MT  Wamon tape set

We say: Again, we congratulate someone for getting in the word ‘pilgramage’ into their entry.


“…I own 8 Filofaxes, two Lamy Al Stars, way too many rolls of MT tape, I have a very organised system of revision for my A Levels and I have to SMUGGLE new stationery purchases into the house! Oh and I work in a displeasing high street stationery and book shop chain… Help me!”

Rosie Summers won the neat Harinacs staple-less stapler

We say: We do our bit to help someone stuck in the wrong type of stationery business…


“…it reminds me of being a child in a sweet shop, gazing up at the rows of jars full of brightly coloured treats and wanting it all.”

Katie Swift won the aromatic Coccoina glue

We say: This tapped into something we have been thinking about and saw at a recent trade fair – stationery in jars. It works too.


“…pens come in all shapes and sizes and I love them all. Each pen to us is like a paintbrush to an artist. A thin brush is used for fine lines or to apply a small bit of colour to possibly a small section in the drawing or painting. For us, a pen with a tiny tip is used to write, doodle and make things look neat and also to use them for one particular purpose understood and known only to our personal self. A fountain pen could be used to make our handwriting and whatever else we use it for to look professional and fancy. A calligraphy brush for the Chinese is the equivalent of a fountain pen for us. A biro pen is best for quick everyday writing wherever you are, whether you are booking an appointment, signing something at the bank or just jotting a funny thing you just thought of. A computer is all very well but when using a pen, it makes your writing more personal to you. No one writes like you and no one has the same handwriting as you so using a pen draws out your personality in the stationary and literary world. If you can be yourself in the real world be yourself in the imaginary and writing world.

We talk about paper and what is best for the environment like ‘recycled paper is the best because it means that we don’t have to cut down so many trees’ or ‘cut down more trees so we can have new soft coloured paper!’ In actual fact we can still colour on to recycled paper and so while we enjoy what we like with stationary if we use recycled things we help the world too! Note pads are perfect because they can be used for anything like diaries, travel journals, thought books and schoolbooks.”

Flora Lang (aged 12) won a Neocritz Pencil case

We say: One of the longer entries, but worryingly impressive for someone so young (he says not meaning to sound patronising)


And finally…

“Your lights are on, but you’re not home
Your mind is not your own
You need a ruler, your hand shakes
Another notebook is what it takes
You can’t sleep, you need ink
There’s no way, that you can think.
Your throat is tight, you can’t breathe
Another pencil is all you need
Ohh oohh

You like to think that you’re immune and won’t buy more
It’s closer to the truth to say you keep looking at the store
You know you’re gonna have to face it
You’re addicted and will buy more

You see the ads, and have to read
You’re writin’ at a different speed
You heart beats in double time
Another pen must be mine, a one track mind.
You can’t be saved.
-stationery is all you crave
There’s some new rubbers left for you
You don’t mind if you do
Ohh oohh

You like to think that you’re immune and won’t buy more
It’s closer to the truth to say you keep looking at the store
You know you’re gonna have to face it
You’re addicted and will buy more”

Janet Hutson (with just a little help from Robert Palmer) won a Lamy Al-Star bluegreen fountain pen

We say: A worthy prize winner, with such attention to detail. Oh, and by chance it also hit a little bit of family history thereby sealing its place on the winning list. In case you haven’t worked it out, here is the answer.