Thanks for stopping by. I hope you enjoy what you find here. Whilst you may not agree with everything I post, if you respect my right to my opinion I'll respect your right to disagree with it and we should get along just fine. :)

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Right then, on with the blog...

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

You Can Keep Your Hat On...

...and your coat, scarf, gloves and thermal socks! Apologies for mangling the lyrics of that well known Tom Jones song, but a weekend in a caravan in Berwick upon Tweed in October can be a mite on the chilly side; it's the first time this pen-thusiast has slept fully clothed for fun!

Who says we don't suffer for our art?!

It's not all bad news however, as Berwick is home to a couple of little gems as far as stationery shopping is concerned.

The first of these is Geo. C. Grieve Ltd. Stationers & Bookseller on the corner of Marygate and Church Street. Not just your average provincial stationers, oh no! Geo. C Grieve's is a veritable cornucopia of stationery-related goodness - postcards, notebooks, paper, pens, ink, art supplies, calenders, maps, local books, the list is (almost) endless. Grieve's is always this pen-thusiast's first port of call on a trip to Berwick.

Grieve's is a wonderfully friendly shop (of which there are precious few around these days) and this pen-thusiast has never failed to find something interesting or unusual to buy - it's worth a trip to Berwick just to visit this shop! It's also nice to be recognised and greeted warmly, even when your last visit was six months ago. A word of caution though, Grieve's website lists but a fraction of the stock available, so should you not find what you're after, please do email them, they'll be happy to try and source stuff for you.

The haul this time included a 0.5mm Pentel Graphgear 1000 drafting pencil (which came supplied in a great black pen sleeve), a Pentel Ain Clic eraser in red, a Stabilo Marathon ballpoint in black and a six-pack of Artline Multi Pens by Shachihata; no idea what I'm going to do with this last item, but they looked cool and are bound to be useful!

Add to that a few interesting postcards of the local area and a couple of magnetic-backed FootNotes notepads, and it was a happy pen-thusiast who set off, his wallet suitably lightened, to the next regular stop on the itinerary.

The second port of call on our whistle-stop stationery tour of Berwick is Doolally in Marygate, just round the corner from Grieve's in fact. Located on the ground floor of the historic Town Hall (which dates from 1761), Doolally is a combination bookseller and gift shop with a cafe, so you can enjoy a rather lovely cup of coffee while examining your purchases.

Doolally is located through the arch in the end of the building pictured above centre.

Visiting this time brought me my first contact with Momiji - incredibly cute dolls from Japan (I believe). Now these are not really my thing, but my darling daughter picked up the Kittie Doll, which even I have to admit is rather cute! We both grabbed one of the Momiji notebooks and a couple of the matching pens too.

I really quite like the notebooks - they're about A5 size, with wipe-clean plastic covers and have different designs on the pages, making them ideal as inexpensive journals (possibly more suited to our younger viewers!). The pens are needlepoint rollerballs and come with black, blue, red and green ink, each colour having a different barrel design.

Should you be heading up to Berwick, you can contact Doolally on 01289 306 796.

Not a bad haul for a weekend's work, eh?



Julie (Okami) said...

What fun!! you didn't tell me you went on a trip.

Sam said...

Apologies. It was a bit of a last minute thing - we just felt we needed a few days away. If I'd have known I'd have told you - caravan was supposed to have wi-fi so I was expecting to be online "live on location," British 'efficiency' scuppered that plan!

phonelady said...

Oh my god looks like you had a lovely vacation and I must say i love everything you bought even the kitty doll . Your daughter has a good eye Ill trust she got that from your side LOL !!! Oh my what a stash you brought home and quite lovely at that . well glad you got away and had a good time . sorry it was cold but perhaps you like the cold living in the uk . I lived in London many yrs ago when my father was stationed at one of the many air bases . Loved it and remembered it being rather damp . Oh well glad you had a good time anyways . thanks for sharing and posting this .

Sara said...

love the momiji stuff! notebooks like that are great for all ages... writing on stark white/cream paper can get boring :D

unhalfbricking said...

Roadtrip! Sounds like you and family did very well out of it, despite it being very British weather lately. :)

dianeb said...

Old fashioned stationery stores are great, and your pics are fantastic.

PostMuse said...

Oh man... this looks wonderful! If ever in England.....

Sam said...

Phonelady - Oh yes, my daughter's good eye is entirely down to me, glad to see the training's paying off! ;) I don't mind the cold (pretty much a prerequisite for living in the UK), but it really did get a bit unpleasant as the weekend was damp too; you remember the UK just as it still is today!

Sara - Yes, that's what I thought! Being a hard-bitten pen-thusiast I wouldn't normally go for a notebook like that, but I really liked the different page designs and just fancied something a bit different for a change. ;)

unhalfbricking - Aside from the very British weather it was a great trip, thanks. I had a feeling I would find something interesting to bring back, and my usual haunts didn't disappoint. :)

dianeb - Thanks for those kind words. :) You're right though, sadly there are fewer and fewer of those old-fashioned stationery stores left in the UK where good customer service still means something.

PostMuse - It was wonderful, thanks. :) Well, anytime you find yourself on these fair shores, do let me know, it would be a pleasure to show you round my neck of the woods. :)

In fact my comment in reply to PostMuse applies equally to you all. Thanks for being an awesome bunch of readers, your kind comments really do mean a lot to me. :)

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