What to Do At Your First Fountain Pen Show: Some Tips for Newbies

2016 Chicago Pen Show main ballroom

Lots of pen show newcomers ask for tips for going to their first show. Here are mine.

In brief: 1. Use a List. 2. Get Organized. 3. Pre-Order and Prepare. 4. Prioritize. 5. Don’t Just Shop. 6. Talk to People. 7. Go as Early as Possible.

Want more details? On the next page.

(click Page 2 below to continue)

11 thoughts on “What to Do At Your First Fountain Pen Show: Some Tips for Newbies

  1. OMG, this got me so excited, and I couldn’t even go! Haha. I’d love too though, I really, really have to figure out a way to go some day. There isn’t one locally, and there isn’t likely to be anytime soon I think, but I would *love* to go to the Chicago one as it sounds especially cool (although that’s probably just seeing that through Laura’s eyes and others are also nice, they just don’t have Laura talking about them :P)

    But this list is still useful – there’s a craft supplies show I somehow end up attending every year and every time I’m a little lost and wish I’d prepared better to get the most of it. I love the ongoing to-do list! It’s funny, I use it all the time for more formal projects and never thought to use it for an event like that πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is a most, most excellent write-up: concise, enough photos to make sense, and plenty of enthusiasm. I’ve already shared a link to the site with a couple people who will be attending Chicago as THEIR FIRST PEN SHOW EVAR!

    So, yeah. Yay!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No way?! You’ll send them over to me, right? We’re having a meetup and group hug Saturday, but if they miss that I’ll also be doing the ink station and IG and assorted other things. It’s going to be a great show this year. Chicago Blue, too. πŸ’™


      1. Gimme the deets in a separate communication and I’d be happy to spread the word about the times and places for meeting up, etc. I miss all the good stuff!


  3. Excellent advice. Your USA pen shows sound much bigger affairs than we have in the UK. I like to bring my loupe in case I want to look at nibs. And do not wear a ruck sack that will knock pen trays off the table when you turn around (which I saw someone do). The abiding memory is always the lovely interesting people you meey. Enjoy!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. A loupe’s a great idea. Although, at Ohio I brought mine, used it once and immediately lost the lens cover. πŸ€¦πŸ»β€β™€οΈ Luckily I’ve never knocked over a tray of pens. Knowing me, it will be a rack of ink bottles. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

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