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Gifts that Give Back

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For those of you who buy a little gift for yourself while shopping for others, here are two lines that will make you feel a little less guilty about it: Public Supply and Blackwing!

Based in New York, Public Supply donates a very generous 25% of profits from every sale of its office, art, and writing essentials to public schools whose arts budgets have been slashed or eliminated. It is very gratifying to visit their classroom page, where they post thank you notes from each classroom that has benefitted from the program.

Blackwing, the creator of the pencil favored by John Steinbeck, Leonard Bernstein, and illustrator Chuck Jones, supports K through 12th-grade based arts and music programs through The Blackwing Foundation. In addition to its high-quality pencils made with incense-cedar from the Pacific Northwest and premium Japanese graphite, Blackwing journals suit every need -- from the pocket-sized clutch notebooks to the Sebastian Sketch books to the Summit, which, once opened, offers 15” x 10” useable space. And the most versatile -- the everyday Slate notebook -- 5” x 8” with a built-in Blackwing 602 pencil. The gray matte 602 is my favorite of all their pencils and certainly earns the tagline “half the pressure, twice the speed.”

Keep in mind that the 602 is a perfect starter pencil for children for this very reason. Because of its firm, smooth performance, a child can learn to hold a pencil properly rather than grasping it in a fist. Check out Blackwing’s pencil accessories as well, including long point pencil sharpeners, replacement erasers, and pencil point guards.

So, when buying for the writers, artists and composers in your life why not help drive creativity in our schools at the same time by purchasing a gift from Public Supply or Blackwing? And while you are at it, buy a little something for yourself!

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