Now n Then Eco-Essential Pencil Review24 August 2015
When I was little my Grandad and I made a fishing rod from bamboo. We put a lot of work into it, straightening the bamboo, hand winding the loops for the line and putting on layer after layer of varnish. It looked beautiful and holds a special place in my heart, one of the many dear memories I have of my Grandad. I think this is why I’m so drawn to bamboo as a material and helps explain why I wanted to try an Eco-Essential pen or pencil so much. I was therefore very pleased to receive this one from ISHUJA. Did it live up to such high expectations?
Lead size options: 0.5mm
Barrel options: Bamboo, with a choice of coloured rings and a stylus option
The pencil does look beautiful. Metal and wood (or bamboo!) always does it for me and this is well done. The box includes a few different bands for the cap (I stuck with black) and also a stylus tip (which goes on the cap, and can be seen on the product page). The varnish brings out the qualities of the bamboo and the whole effect is balanced and lovely.
The cap screws closed and also screws on to post. If you post the cap you have to take it off to advance the lead. There is an option clip (included) – folded metal – if you want to use it.
Advancing the lead is even more of a pain. Having pressed the button a couple of times, the lead always pushes back in a little when you put it to paper. This makes the whole experience feel broken and is very annoying.
There’s no eraser but in many ways I’d rather go without one than have one of the pathetic little things included in many mechanical pencils.
Sadly this is another classic example of an object where form triumphs over function. It looks beautiful and it’s clear that a lot of thought went into designing its appearance. Unfortunately it falls short of being something you can take much pleasure in actually using because it fails in one of its most basic functions, advancing the lead.
Mechanism doesn’t work very well
Many thanks to ISHUJA for sending me this pencil to review. These are all my own thoughts and opinions.