Image: Kristin Belz
Le Pine fountain pens could be an heirloom.

Sure, Mom would probably appreciate a Happy Mother’s Day text this Sunday May 12. But she might be a little underwhelmed. And flowers and chocolates and scented candles are always in style. But flowers fade, chocolates are eaten, and candles burn away.

A handwritten letter, however, on nice stationary, along with a packet of fine paper and a lovely fountain pen – now that’s the kind of Mother’s Day gift that could begin to express how much your Mumsie means to you. 

Just getting a handwritten letter these days is a treasure. People don’t tend to keep and reread emails or text messages (unless they’re in the swoony beginnings of a torrid affair, perhaps). Letters, though, can be read over and over again, slipped between the pages of a favorite book, or kept carefully in an archival box of photos and mementoes, saved with a smile for someone to (re)discover with a sigh years later. 

Image: Kristin Belz
Oblation Papers & Press makes its own 100% cotton paper from garment industry fabric remnants.

Fine stationery and writing implements are part of a long but not quite forgotten tradition of tangible, physical personal expression through the written word. The paper and pens themselves can be works of art. So for Mother's Day, a Bic and a pad of post-its is probably not going to cut it. But a French fountain pen and some handmade 100% cotton fiber paper? That could say something sweet.

To go high quality, try a pen that's not sold at a drugstore (and that you can't just accidentally nick from the office supply cabinet). Oblation Papers & Press carries a number of highly tempting fountain pens (as well as a few rollerballs, ballpoints, and pencils) that are in the potential heirloom category.

Le Pine, from France, might be at the top of that spectrum ($100 and up), Lamy at the lower, more accessible end (about $40). But all will look and feel in Mom's hand like a reminder that her little one (no matter how old you are) doesn't take her for granted. 

Oblation Papers & Press
Monday–Saturday 10 am–6 pm
Sunday 12 pm–5 pm
516 NW 12th Avenue
Portland, Oregon 97209
503-223-1093

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