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The Pen Zone: Celebrating The Year of the Monkey

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On the 8th of February, China and the numerous Chinese communities from across the world celebrated the beginning of the Year of Monkey. Alongside of this it has become a well-established practice for renowned brands to release Chinese Zodiac themed models each year. A quick money-making scheme, some say, aimed at milking the nouveau riche of the Far East. But is it? Some have called the phenomenon a ‘cultural appropriation’ (or misappropriation?) but others see it more as ‘cultural appreciation’.

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The Pen Zone: Montblanc Figurado Creation Privée

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Imagine if you will for a moment a Rolex with a case made from real tobacco leaves. Seems crazy, right? And yet this is exactly what Montblanc – often referred to as Rolex’s alter ego in the pen world – has done. Called the Figurado Creation Privée, this new pen takes the concept of customisation to a whole new level.

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In Conversation With Giuliano Mazzuoli, Watch and Pen Creator

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Giuliano Mazzuoli is an Italian product designer, who first made a name for himself as a typographer and later as designer of pens. Since 2005, he has been focusing increasingly on watches. His works are familiar yet original. A coffee pot, a pressure gauge, a gear. Domestic objects, tools and parts, one would typically find in a garage. The genius lays in elevating the object above the utilitarian and reinterpreting it in surprising way.