The Passion for Pens IS our Business
Anderson Pens is the joint effort of Brian and Lisa Anderson, two long time pen collectors who actually met through the collecting hobby, fell in love & got married, and founded the company in 2010.
We used to bid against each other on Ebay for Esterbrook pens, back when the bidder names were still visible, and we cost each other a great deal of money in the beginning, until we called a truce after about 2 years. We met in person in 2003 at the Chicago Pen Show, and we were instant friends - two collectors who shared the same passion for the Esterbrook brand. We even had some of our pens photographed together for a fountain pen book.
Lisa wrote an article for the now-defunct magazine Stylophiles, and had several of her pens professionally photographed. She sent the pictures to Brian, and they included a very rare doctor’s pen with an unusual name engraved on it. Brian emailed back and sent a picture of a pencil he owned – the same very rare model, complete with the same unusual name. What are the odds of that?? We each owned 2 halves of the same set...
We lost touch for a few years, and then found each other on Facebook of all places. We discovered that we had a great deal in common besides pens, and in December 2008, Brian flew to Tampa to visit Lisa. Six months later, Lisa and her kids moved to Brian’s home in Appleton, Wisconsin.
2010 was a busy year for us – we got married AND founded Anderson Pens – life has never been better!! We started our online store, and attended pen shows all over the country; generally 12-15 shows a year. In November 2013, we opened a retail brick & mortar pen store in downtown Appleton, and we would love to meet you if you are in the area - please stop in! If you can't make it in, check out our virtual tour below!
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We have over 36 years of combined experience buying, selling, collecting and using vintage and modern fountain pens, inks, and fine papers. We are both members of the Pen Collectors of America. We encourage you to check out their site and become a member! Lisa is a past President of the PCA.
Brian’s collecting focus includes Esterbrooks, as well as hard rubber pens with some form of ornamentation, such as sterling silver, gold fill, or solid gold with bands, overlays and filigree work. Aikin Lambert, Paul Wirt, John Holland and Waterman are finding their way into the pen chest more often than not these days. Modern pens do seem to be working their way into rotation though, including OMAS, Sailor, Sheaffer Legacy, and Montblanc pens. Brian has studied pen repair with Joel Hamilton and Sherrell Tyree as well as completing Richard Binders intensive three day nib workers' course. Brian takes care of all the pen repair, images and pen listings here at Anderson Pens, as well as answering all those minutiae on Esterbrook you can think of.
Lisa’s collecting focus also began with Esterbrook, but she has expanded into the old style faceted Pilot Vanishing Point pens. Other favorites include Italian and Japanese pens, such as Aurora, Pilot, and Sailor. Lisa is your Ink and Paper Expert, and she manages many of the day to day activities here at the store.
Meet the People Who Make Things Happen
Dave joined us in April of 2014, and is a native of Kaukauna, Wisconsin. Dave attended the University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point and studied Music and Business. In 1993 Dave graduated from UWSP with a Bachelors of Arts degree. Prior to coming to Anderson Pens Dave worked at Heid Music Company in Appleton, Wisconsin for 18 years. At Heid Music Dave specialized in band instrument sales and working with the school education account's as the School Accounts Department Manager. Dave's first Fountain Pen was a Sheaffer Model 300 that he purchased from Brian and Lisa which began his addiction to pens. Some of Dave's favorite brands of pens are Sheaffer, Delta, Pilot, Sailor, and Retro 51. Dave has not made the jump to vintage pens yet but that may only be a matter of time.Dave still lives in Kaukauna Wisconsin today with his wife Julie and daughter Katelyn. Dave still is involved with music as a member of the Little Chute Community Band and Jazz Ensemble and is also on the Board of Directors for the Little Chute Community Band as Treasurer. In addition to Music, Dave enjoys gardening, spending time in the outdoors, baseball, collecting toy tractors, cooking, and spending family time with Julie and Katelyn. One unique fact about Dave is that prior to working at Heid Music, Dave was a Chef and managed the kitchen for a supper club and banquet facility here in Wisconsin. Dave is our primary salesman, assistant manager, and handles much of the customer service communication as well as inventory. Dave and Brian were friends in college, and Brian got Dave, and later Dave’s wife Julie, hooked on fountain pens. We have been blessed to have Dave here working with us on a daily basis, and he also keeps the store open when we are at shows.
Chris joined us in September of 2015 and is a native of Illinois who moved to Wisconsin to attend Lawrence University where he double majored in Art History and Studio Art. Chris is a lover of all things pens and stationery, with a particular fondness for Sailor and Japanese paper. Outside of work he continues to produce artwork and exhibits in Northeast Wisconsin. Chris works in a myriad of two dimensional mediums but prefers oils, drawing, cyanotypes and printmaking. He is excited to be the newest member of the Anderson team, and looks forward to delving deeper into the wonderful pen community. Chris has tried less than 50 of our 700 inks, it'll be a while before he has an absolute favorite. For now Sailor Miruai, J. Herbin Lie de The, and Iroshizuku Fuyu-syogun are some of his favorites. Chris's grail pen is currently the Sailor King of Pen Asa-tsuyu with a Naginata nib.
Chris handles sales, shipping, and customer service, and is the creative arm of Anderson Pens. We look to Chris for ideas and he never fails to come up with creative ways to do things we hadn't considered. Chris is the inspiration behind thINKthursday and our Midweek Mojo features on the Blog.
Azizah joined us recently as our Social Media Guru. She is a graduate of the University of Manitoba with a Master's in Microbiology. She has moved around a lot, and is currently in The Netherlands. Prior to joining us, Azizah worked for her University's Disability Services for many years, providing live transcription of classes to Deaf and Deaf-Blind students; this experience has fueled her appreciation for writing. Azizah is also known as Gourmet Pens in the stationery world - she has been writing the GourmetPens blog since 2010. You may recognize her from FPGeeks, where she contributed to the site and was part of the podcast, and she runs SBREBrown's website. Azizah and SBREBrown also do joint fountain pen videos (Serious Nibbage). She has an excellent sense of smell and taste, which serves her well in those pen, paper, and ink reviews. She also loves reading, calligraphy, and anything else that requires the use of stationery. It's safe to say she loves pens. Oh, and cats.
Steph grew up in Appleton and stayed in town to study Linguistics and Philosophy at Lawrence University. She graduated in 2013 and started working for a nearby deli where she first met Brian and Lisa. They used to joke about stealing her away to work for them and she was thrilled to discover that they weren't really kidding at all. Steph is (secretly) a bit of a writer and has published two poems and a short story so far. When she was in high school she tried her hand at calligraphy, but until she joined the team at Anderson Pens her favorite pen was the ubiquitous Pilot G2. Her introduction to fountain pens was a sort of revelation. Now, she is the proud owner of a purple Lamy AL-Star as well as a Stealth Vanishing Point and can't wait to expand her collection. At home, Steph enjoys spending time outside with her pet hedgehog, Myshkin. She is newly engaged to her boyfriend of two years, Seth; they should be tying the knot sometime in the summer of 2017. Steph joined us in February of 2016 and has recently been promoted to run our Proper Pads printing operation and handles image editing.
As a Communications and Merchandise Marketing Major, Kim is thrilled to use her knowledge and experience in her new role as Director of Marketing at Anderson Pens. After graduating from University of Wisconsin - Green Bay, Kim moved to Mokpo, South Korea to teach English for two years. After bouncing around Asia, she returned to The United States to set up a permanent home for her family in Northeast Wisconsin. Kim was introduced to Anderson Pens when it was her account while she was with Gannett. It didn't take long for Kim to purchase her first Pilot, followed by multiple Retro 51 pens. However, her 4 year-old daughter is also a fan of the Retro 51 pen and is constantly borrowing them to do her own "work". Kim's new favorite is the Sailor Four Seasons Haruzora Spring Metallic Sky Blue pen. She keeps this one out of her daughter's reach, but does allow her daughter to practice writing with the Varsity Fountain Pens. At Anderson Pens, we encourage a love of pens at an early age!
Our Store is located at:
10 E. College Ave. #112A
Appleton, WI 54911
Monday through Friday: 9:30 am - 5:30 pm
Saturday: 10:00 am - 2:00 pm
Sunday: By chance or by appointment
In the News:
The Appleton Post Crescent August 1, 2016