Friday, 18 September 2009

Ahhh...The Smell Of New Coloured Pencils

So woody and comforting. Nyum. Go on, scratch and sniff.

It took me almost half-an-day yesterday to find the perfect set that I need for my beading class homework. Perfect = reasonably-priced + good quality + not made in China.

My first stop was the art supplies shop near us - they only had those super "professional" strictly-for-artists sets costing AU$50 to AU$90 per pop!

Next stop: Kinokuniya, my favourite Japanese bookstore with a little stationery section. Thought I could find some that come in a cute Hello Kitty box or equivalent. They only had crayons.

The colour palette I love!

Then Lincraft, a haberdashery-cum-craft-supplies store. AU$3.99 for a box of 24! Whoopeedoo, I thought. I tried one - the colour was weak and the lead broke after a few strokes. I turned the box around and it said "Made In China".

I remember we could get pretty decent coloured pencils like Caran d'Ache in the departmental stores back in Singapore so off I went to Myers. Nada. But the helpful sales assistant suggested I try the Dymocks bookstore next door.

Waiting to be used...

That was where I finally found this set of Derwent. Amidst two rows of shelves stacked with boxes of coloured pencils by various manufacturers, ranging from those for the kiddies to those for real artists. And I thought Dymocks sold only books.

But my dream set is this...

Aurora Display Case - image from here

...the "500 Pencils" project by Japanese design firm, Felissimo, for Social Designer, "a global company that strives to promote social responsibility through good design".

But the 500 can't be bought all in one go.

Orchestra Display Case - image from here

You have to subcribe to them "like a time-release of inspiration and colour, each month, over 20 months, a set of 25 coloured pencils is delivered to the collector" in really cute boxes. Imagine getting a colourful present every month for nearly two years!

Colour Wave Display Case - image from here

And the limited edition collect+display cases! Also available by subscription.

If I have them (the Aurora is my favourite), I won't be needing to use any one of the 500 coloured pencils to make drawings to hang on our walls!

And with such cute names and colours, I don't think I would be able to bear putting them through a pencil sharpener!


Skye said...

When I was in primary school the absolute pinnacle of celebrity could be attained by anyone with the magical set of 72 Derwents. I finally got my set (in a very satisfying tin box) for my birthday when I turned 10, and I still have them, although they are much reduced and no longer so perfectly uniform.

72 Derwents forever!

flying carpet said...

Yay pencils!

I never had the 72 derwent box but I had the smaller set. Loved the tin box and strong colours. I always used the pinks and reds first though. Boo.

Top Bird @ Wee Birdy said...

Super-lovely post - Love all those pencil finds.

I always coveted the double-deck tin of Derwents at school, and finally got them for Xmas one year. I've still got them, and hope to find the river on the tin when we go up North next month.

I'm lusting after Caran d'Ache pencils now... xx

selina said...

that's a beautiful set of colour pencils! : )

The Likkle Girl Who Wurves Pwetty Things said...

Hey all,
It's funny how coloured pencils rocked our world when we were kids, huh?

I can picture us old and grey, sitting on our rocking chairs on the porch years down the road, clutching our special box of coloured pencils going, "Hmmm...things were so nice and simple back then." xx

Hey Mommy Skye,
You were way cooler than me!
The biggest set I had was a 36. Hrrrrmpphh! xx

Yo, Ms Carpet,
I like tin boxes with hinges. My new set's box hasn't got any :(

I used loads of blues and greens - sky and grass! xx

Hey Top Bird,
The 500 Pencils project has been sitting in the Draft Box for the longest time, forgotten, until I photographed my new pencils.

Double-deck?! What luxury!
My box has no river on it - it's a coloured-in F1 type of racing car. Bah.

I miss my Caran d'Ache. With the watercolour "function". I thought I brought them from Singapore but it was a similar-looking box of crayons. xx

Miss Nah-nah!!!!!
Thought you might appreciate them! Tee hee hee. xo