In the wonderful world of pens and pencils, pencil cases often don't get the attention they deserve. Yet they are the ones who bring order to your collection of writing instruments while keeping them safe and out-of-the box new. We're turning the spotlight on pencil cases; whether you're a student, artist, working professional, or just need an all-around stellar pencil case, here are our hand-picked recommendations for you.
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The zippered pouch is a classic style, and very recognizable. The Miyamoto Collection Retro Komon Pen Case shown here is the simplest variation, with a squared cylindrical shape and only one pocket, but something like the Nomadic PE-09 Flap Type Pencil Case would also be considered a zippered pouch. Because they keep everything securely enclosed, they're viewed as highly portable and versatile.
Wallet style pencil cases like the Nomadic PN-04 Snap Button Pencil Case are relatively low capacity, but offer the best visibility. Your writing instruments are spread out, so you know exactly where everything is, and tools aren't constantly shifting around. Wallet cases are also slim and easy to slip into a laptop bag. However, the pockets are usually open on one side, so the case must be stored upright to prevent pens from falling out.
Book style cases are typically deep and high capacity, with a "hinge" along the side. Many, like the Lihit Lab Teffa Pen Case, have a wide assortment of compartments and pockets. Book style cases are ideal for anyone that wants to carry a lot of supplies, but can be somewhat bulky.
Roll up (or wrap) pen cases are usually made with softer materials like cloth or leather. Like the wallet style cases, roll cases tend to have great visibility, making it easy to find the tool you're looking for. The flap on top keeps the pens from falling out, and the tie cord wraps it all up into a pretty little bundle. There's something very artisanal about the design that artists will appreciate. See the selection guide for more.
Standing pencil cases like the Kokuyo Neo Critz Transformer - Double Zipper are basically pouches that can be converted into pencil holders. They have a small footprint, while still managing to keep everything decently visible. Students with limited desk space will appreciate the multi-functional design of the Neo Critz and its ilk.
Hard cases made of metal or plastic are protective in some ways, and damaging in others. For an example, throwing a hard case in your backpack with a laptop could result in scratches not only to the laptop, but to the pen bodies inside (particularly if they're nice fountain pens). At the same time, hard cases display their contents quite well when left on a table or bookshelf.
Protective cases made from leather, canvas, silicone, polyneoprene, and nylon are relatively soft, and won't scratch the pens and pencils within. They tend to be flexible, can stretch if needed, and are usually easy to clean. Students, artists, travelers, and anyone that puts their tools through a beating will probably want a protective case. Nylon is especially tough and portable.
Portable, convenient, and even fun, a good pencil case is a must-have for any stationery junkie. What kind of pencil case do you prefer? Tell us what essentials you carry around with you in the comments below!
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