Fit for Royalty

    The private salon of Countess Ottilie von Faber (1877-1944) was the inspiration for this year’s Graf von Faber-Castell Pen of the Year. The countess was the wife of Count Alexander zu Castell-Rudenhausen, who became head of Faber-Castell in 1900. Ottilie’s grandfather Lothar, great grandson of the founder, stipulated in his will that all successors must bear the name Faber. Thus the new company name, Faber-Castell, came about when Alexander and Ottilie married at the turn of the century. Inspired by the Indian satinwood paneling in the countess’ salon at the family castle in Stein, Germany, along with the herringbone pattern on her writing desk, the company’s new handmade satinwood pen replicates the same pattern. Priced at $3,000, each pen in this limited series, which is for sale exclusively in 2008, is crowned with a faceted citrine. (www.fabercastell.com

    ?Nancy Olson

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