News, Videos & Blog

My Favourite Things

Posted on 5th March 2017 by Vanessa Fortnam

Pen2Paper magazine asked London Stationery Show founder, Chris Leonard-Morgan, to name his six favourite stationery items.  

This is his list…

1 Parker 51 fountain pen  img40
I don’t use it all the time but do whenever possible for handwritten letters and cards, and for signing important documents, letters and contracts.
My mother gave me the pen many years ago for passing a particular exam, and I have believed in the importance of handwritten communications ever since.  There are many wonderful, beautifully designed pens on the market today…it’s a real feel good product and must-have accessory for both men and women!




2 Smythson Panama notebook
My daughter is responsible for this particular indulgence which accompanies me everywhere, including meetings and exhibitions. It’s pocket sized and very flexible – like the Panama hat! – and of course very convenient to use.  It is home to many of my best ideas, as well as some of the more far fetched and insane!





3 Campo Marzio desk organiser  img34
I discovered Campo Marzio in London’s Piccadilly, and have been a fan ever since.  They are an Italian design-led company (aren’t all Italian companies?) with very smart stores around the world and sell beautiful multicoloured leather goods and writing instruments.  Funnily enough, this item was also given to me by my daughter in an attempt to help me organise if not my life, then at least my desk a bit better – it is still work in progress!




img424 Faber-Castell pencils
It is amazing how many people like writing with a pencil, and I am one of them.  I use a lot of Faber-Castell’s, and had the pleasure of meeting the late Count Anton von Faber-Castell and telling him so. I am also a fan of Caran d’Ache and their products…both are very fine, family run businesses.





5 M&M’s giant paperclips
The bigger the paperclip, the less likely you are to lose the papers! This one is proof positive of the power of branding and licensing, and its growing involvement in the stationery market. It puts FUN into the functional, and always makes me smile.

6 Samsung Galaxy S6
I couldn’t run my business without this wonderful product, which is a boon to many like me running a small business on the go and wanting to keep in touch with a far flung family, especially with photographs.

I don’t exactly lead the technology charge, but I am on a mission to prove that analogue and digital complement each other, and can comfortably
co-exist. Writing matters!

More Blogs...


Posted on 8th November 2017 by Vanessa Fortnam

The new stationery trade show, which ran last week in Old Trafford, Manchester, kicked off in style as exhibitors and visitors alike were introduced to a new venue, which was variously described as ‘intimate’, ‘quirky’, ‘edgy’ and ‘boutique’.38086646756_220fd9a960_m

Show organisers Ocean Media Group, who also run the London Stationery Show, were delighted that everyone involved embraced the industrial style of the Victoria Warehouse, with its concrete floors, huge red brick walls and exposed beams and pipes.

With 40 exhibitors representing 70 leading stationery brands, the new show attracted buyers from as far afield as Penny Black Glasgow, Klondyke Garden Centre, Falkirk, Pencil Me In from Elgin and Scottish Trade Stationers from Alloa, to local leading craft retailer Fred Aldous and The Co-operative Group.

Other regionally based visitors included Marple Stationery Supplies, Utility Retail, Austin & Co, Ryman, OPen Office Solutions, Castlegate Stationery, Art & Toys, B&M Retail, Celebrations of Stourbridge, Budget Greeting Cards, Hunkydory Crafts, Poundland, The Crow Emporium, The Little Stationery Shop and Write Here.

In addition, buyers from TJX Europe, Accessorize, Paperchase, notonthehighstreet and Sainsbury’s visited the show.

The show’s seminars and Creative Stationery workshops were well attended, and exhibitors confirmed that they had picked up good leads.

ExaClair, the UK supplier of Rhodia, J Herbin, G Lalo, Brause, Exacompta and Clairefontaine, declared the show ‘a roaring success’, saying it had delivered higher than expected visitor numbers for them, and positive interest in its premium notebook and calligraphy brands.

Clement Rouillard, marketing manager at ExaClair, said, “The venue choice was good in terms of space, layout and feel, meaning we were able to showcase our products to great effect. It was well attended by key customers in the boutique stationery market and so a positive experience for us.”

37430103654_81f87e0c2b_mOn the visitor front, the show’s twitter feed was busy with comments including, from Toad Diaries, ‘Interesting day at the Manchester Stationery Show. Phil Pond’s seminars never fail to amaze us – great talk and inspiration!’ and ‘Great visit to the Manchester Stationery Show. Can’t wait to add calligraphy products to our Xmas range coming soon.’ from Sarah Sibley, founder of online business Got2Jot about exhibitor Manuscript Pens.

“The stationery industry is a creative and fashion-led sector.  We want to tap into this creativity and stage events that inspire and inform,” says the show’s marketing director Vanessa Fortnam.

“We are already planning how to encourage more suppliers to take advantage of this new industry event to network with customers and new contacts in 2018.

“We will also address the issue of visitor parking for next year. Many visitors were frustrated and delayed on the first day of the show as the show clashed with a Manchester Utd Championship League home game.  We hope our decision to pull the show forward to the beginning of October next year will help with this.”

The 2018 Manchester Stationery Show will run on Tuesday and Wednesday, 2 & 3 October, at the Victoria Warehouse in Manchester.

Photographs from the show are available to view online in the Show Gallery – click here.


More News Stories...

2017 Video

Posted on 9th June 2016 by Penny Day

More Videos...