Great Pen Stores - Stores of Note - Paris
38, rue de l'Arcade
It would not be a trip to Paris without stopping by Plume et Bille and having a visit with store owner Brigitte Courson at Plume & Bille.
On my most recent visit in 2016, as with the past number of years I always look forward to a visit with Brigitte.
She operates a beautiful store, with an inviting atmosphere. Her store, Plume et Bille, so nicely matches the pleasure of owning a fine pen with paper and ink accessories.
I recommend this store because of the careful pairing of writing instruments and accessories to support the experience of written communication.
I usually walk to Plume & Bille by taking the metro to Havre-Caumartin (Printemps on Boulevard Haussmann) and then walking down Haussmann, turning on rue de L'Arcade. Once you turn off Boulevard Haussmann, it is located in the second block.
If I could only visit one pen store in Paris, this would be at the top of the list. Brigitte exemplifies the pairing of pens and the writing experience. I again enjoyed talking with Brigitte on her views, and passion, of pens.
I have been visiting the store since 2011 and I often get the change to talk to customers. On my most recent visit in 2016 I talked with young physician who had just purchased a Namiki fountain pen. I enjoyed hearing about his personal choice to write with a fountain pen and the decision process he went through to select his fountain pen..
Little did I know that this was a foreshadowing conversation for a similar experience for me. See my Pens of Note on the acquisition of my new Namiki Mt Fuji and Wave fountain pen.
She has targeted lines of pens in the store, this is not a pen store will will have a pen from all the various lines, but the pens she carries cover a range of price points and include notes names such as Caran D'Ache, Montblanc, Namiki, Sailor, Faber-Castell and Dupont.
She also has accessories that support the experience of written correspondence. The store has agendas by Mignon or pen cases, she will work with customers on the design of a business card or provide an embosser - she will help with the ordering of the plates with the individual's initials or monogram. I found Brigitte's approach to supporting the experience of written correspondence to be thoughtful. Her back ground in stationery comes through.
From my very first visits I get a good vibe about Plume & Bille with the patience, product knowledge and attention to detail that Brigitte provides customers.
Plume & Bille has a website. While the site can help customers who can not come to Paris, I see the pleasure that customers show as they try various pens before making a decision on the best pen for their need. Brigitte feels the experience of holding the pen and writing with it are so important to the final selection.
So on your next visit to Paris, this is a store worth a visit. Located not far from the department stores of Printemps or Galeries Lafayette on Boulevard Haussmann, it will be easy to find.
7, rue de Tournon
Tel: (33 )01.43.54.99.19
I have had e-mails from many advising me to visit the Mora Stylo and I was very glad that I did. Mora is truly a specialty pen store that stocks current product, limited edition and vintage pens.
I have visited the store both in 2015 and in 2011. I met owner André Mora and Christine Regnault. In 2011 Christine helped me select a wonder Stipula fountain pen, in 2015 I chatted with André Mora to get an update on the store.
For the past twenty years, André Mora has operated the store, previously started by his father, Boris Mora. His father created his own line of pens, Oldwin. With 80 years of service, this is a store that stands the test of time. To mark the 80th anniversary, a limited edition of eight pieces were created.
André Mora has an in depth knowledge of pens. He can complete repairs in the store, and is regularly relied on by auction houses as an expert to assess and value pens.
When he can from the back area of the store wearing his white smock I knew I had the opportunity to meet a true pen specialist.
In fact, magazine articles describe André as "... un grand spécialiste", and indeed he is. For those who attend the major pen shows, André regular travels to the large shows in North America and Europe.
Christine has a real passion for pens and she has worked with Mr. Mora for just over 15 years. I knew I was in good hands when I asked to see some fountain pens with a broad nib, and she immediately selected a range of pens to consider.
The store has a web site, however Christine told me that customers come to the store to personally select the write. They serve a wide range of customers and the store is internationally know for its products and the product knowledge of André and Christine.
When I asked Christine what lines of pens sell the best, her response was pens that have good nibs, good looks and are well made. In talking about the particular brands and her knowledge of the pens, she told me that André and her look at how the pens are made, they test the pens, the pens have to be perfect to be included in their offerings.
The store carries the full range of pen lines: new, vintage and previously owned - occasions. Mr. Mora brings in various nib options as part of their stock and also assists customers with special orders. The limited edition pens were very impressive. To hold pens there are rolls, cases and leather briefcases or boxes.
With the excellent assistance of Christine, I selected a Stipula Etruria Fiesole. A limited edition pen, 124 of 193 pieces, with a special broad nib. It is one of my Pens of Note.
The store is easy to find. Take the Metro to Odéon and walk down Boulevard Saint-Germain turning at Rue de Seine. After a block or so, Rue de Seine becomes Rue de Tournon. The only thing to keep in mind is that you turn on rue de Seine, and it becomes Rue de Tournon.
Hours: Monday to Friday, 9:00 - 6:00; Saturday, 1 - 6:00
26 Boulevard des Italiens
On my 2012 stay in Paris, I had the opportunity to visit with Opera Stylos, a store located on the Boulevard des Italiens in the center of Paris. The store has floor showcases as well as wall shelves that display the major brands of pens. Ms. Maniglier is the store owner.
I talked with I Isabelle about which brands of pens were most popular and the profile of their customers.
S.T. Dupont is a popular line, and their customers are primarily Parisians with a good business clientele.
The store has been in operation since 1949. As a specialty pen store they stock a variety of pen nib styles.
The store is open Monday to Friday, closed on Saturdays.
Palais du Stylo
9, rue Auber
Web Site: www.styloprestige.com
When in Paris in 2015 and 2012, I visited with Stephane at Palais du Stylo. The store is centrally located across from the Paris Opera House and just down from Boulevard Haussmann.
Madame Martine Renard and Monsieur Stephane Renard were in the store and I spent some time talking with Stephane about the store, pens and ink.
Palais du Stylo has a classic pen store feeling. You walk in and along the main wall is a larger counter with pens on display and where you can look and try different models. The store carries all the main brands and includes both regular and limited production lines. From Caran D'Ache, Delta, S.T. Dupont, Montlbanc, Montegrappa, Parker, Pelikan, Sailor, Waterman - to name just a few of the lines. Their web site lists all the lines.
If you have a pen in mind, do ask, as on the wall, behind the main counter are drawers and drawers of pens. Wondering about a pen, just ask. It is probably in one of the drawers. In fact, Stephane told us he has over 2,000 pens in the store.
Stephane noted that Palais du Stylo is a specialty pen store they carry a variety of pen nib styles. The store provides service to Parisians with pens for gifts and ceremonies being popular requests. Through their web site Stephane notes he works with customers in many countries.
The store has pens, pen accessories and of course a good selection of ink. I picked up some of the popular iroshizuki ink while I was there. Stephan notes that he finds this ink performs well in all pens. That and Waterman ink are very popular brands.
The store is easy to find, rue Auber runs from the Place de l'Opera up to Boulevard Haussmann. I either visit the stop by getting off at the Havre-Caumartin Metro stop in from the Printemps on Boulevard Haussmann and then walked down to rue Auber, or I get off at the Opera Metro stop in from the the Palaais Garnier Opera House and then walk up rue Auber.
For a number of years we have stayed in the Marais district of Paris. I must admit, when we visited the Marais I was taken back with the crowd of tourists. It certain is a popular area.
The Art due Bureau is located in this very trendy Marais district of Paris. Located in the 3rd arrondissement, not far from the Picasso Museum. I had not been to the store in a number of years and on my 2011 visit I found the range of pens had dropped and the store was not selling purses, which seemed out of place with the bureau theme.
Lafayette has a stunning pen counter on the main floor and another on the 6th floor. Representatives from the major pen companies work the counters so they know all about the various lines. As you would expect in Paris, very little English spoken. De-Tax forms available.
Located opposite Hotel du Ville.
This department store has a large pen department on the first floor (one floor up from ground floor).
Not only is there an impressive selection of pens, but paper, writings tablets etc., you can find just about anything you are thinking of. They carries all major lines including a number of limited edition pens.
1 rue Marché St. Honoré
I have previously heard about Styl' Honoré thought comments others have sent to me, and because I had read that store owner Patrick Arabian had previously made his own ink.
When going to the store, don't be confused with the names of rue Saint-Honoré and rue Marché St. Honoré - they are different streets. It is just a short walk up from rue Saint-Honoré towards Place du Marché Saint-Honoré. The store is located in a good location, not that far from rue de Rivoli and the Tuileries, I recommend you make some time to visit the store.
By visiting the store I had the pleasure of meeting owners Patrick and Catherine Arabian.
Both have a passion towards pen and I could tell how much they enjoy their interactions with customer in try in and selecting a pen.
When I asked if the store had a web site, the response was quick. You have to try a pen before you can buy a pen.
In fact, Patrick is one of the few in Paris that will re-work a nib, but he does not do so with nibs that customers could send into the store. He told me how it is important to watch how a person holds and writes with their pen, and talk to the person about what they are trying to achieve in terms of a writing experience, before he would take on the work of re-styling a fountain pen nib.
In terms of ink, they carry a good selection of inks but he stopped making his own inks a number of years ago because of issues cost and market competition. It was with pride he showed me on of the bottles of his "Encres Cocktail".
In addition to his ability to re-style a fountain pen nib, they bring in different styles of nibs where they are available from the manufacturers. But as Patrick noted, the number of companies that offer a selection of nibs is limited. Some companies require speciality nibs to be ordered a separate and additional inventory.
In the store there are a number of counters that display the majority of the major lines. The store no longer carries Montblanc or OMAS lines.
This is a great store to visit, but plan your visit, the store is open Monday to Friday 10 to 7, but closed Saturday and Sunday.
40 rue Marbuef
Metro: Franklin D. Roosevelt
Here is a pen store that has been in operation at the same location for 62 years.
The store is located on rue Marbeuf, just off the avenue Champs de Elysées. Take the Franklin D. Roosevelt Metro stop.
I had the pleasure of visiting the store on my 2011 visit to Paris and talking with Syloie and Florence about the store, their merchandise and their customers.
They carry a good selection of the major pen lines. The main window display has a good representation of the major lines, and the store has counters well stocked with pens from the major lines. They bring in pens with a variety of nib widths, where they are available from the manufacturer. The store also has a good selection of ink.
Their customer base includes both those of Paris as well as tourists visiting Paris. They location, just a few blocks from the on the Champs de Elysées makes this am easy store store to find.
13 Avenue de Wagram
(Metro: Charles de Gaulle Étoile)
Tel 01 43 80 20 71
Fax 01 47 54 92 21
On my 2011 stay in Paris, I had the pleasure of visiting with Stylos Wagram, located a few blocks from the Arc de Triomphe. Avenue Wagram is one of the 11 main streets that radiate out from the Charles de Gaulle Etoile. Stylos Wagram is just a few blocks from the circle.
The display window of the store includes watches and pens, and the watch business is an important part of their retail sales.
Wagram has been in operation for over 50 years. They carry a good selection of pens in the store as well as having a web site, and even a Facebook Page. So while they have a good on-line presence, I was told the majority of their customers prefer to come into the store and have the experience of physically trying a pen before making their choice.
I met store own Mr. Fau and talked with Thomas Groll who is knowledgeable on pens and enjoyed talking with him about the lines they carry, customer preferences and their service. Some of their popular lines include Montblanc, Dupont and Faber-Castell, to name only a few. When nib options are available, they bring in a selection, however, Thomas noted only specific lines of pens now have a range of nib options.
21 rue Quentin Bauchart
Located just off the Champs de Elysee, I am told that here is a store has a great selection of the top end of all major brands with an emphasis on the limited editions. The sales staff speak English and they are very helpful. Here you will see some of the limited editions that we would normally only read about. (Thanks: R.E. Morgan). Lots of good comments about this store. They will spend lots of time with you talking and showing you great pens.
Just off the avenue des Champs Elyéees, just before avenue George V.
Tel: +33(0)1 49 52 09 89