You guys, I literally gathered up every pen, pencil, marker, magic marker (there is a difference), highlighter and colored pencil in my home. I looked in the car, the garage (I know) the desk drawer, the office closet, the purse and the kitchen. Whew, that was a mouthful. If you’re over the age of 35, that was my best impersonation of Tommy Lee Jones in ‘The Fugitive.’ I need to DVR that stat. Okay, let’s get back to the topic at hand; pens.

Once I was done corralling and counting, I had more than a minimalist would own #for sure. Here’s the breakdown by type;

Pen Count + others (the items in orange are things I got rid of; wheeeee!)

  • 2 red pens
  • 1 purple pen
  • 4 blue pens
  • 7 black pens
  • 4 magic markers
  • 9 black sharpies
  • 4 pencils
  • 15 colored sharpies
  • 2 highlighters
  • 4 metallic gel pens
  • 1 chalkboard pen
  • 16 markers
  • 24 colored pencils

I didn’t get rid of a ton–mostly because I only own 14 pens (and that was before I got rid of the two red pens). The rest are;

  • Job-related (Sharpies)
  • Craft-related (colored pencils and markers) which are also work-related since I use them in Instagram pics for @BneatoBar
  • Good to have a few around (pencils) #amiright

So in total, I now own 12 pens (and it’s a 2-person household). Which has me thinking; what is your number?? Like, did you know that a pen takes 5-8 hours of use to run out of ink. I feel like I’ll have my pens forever at that rate (since I just don’t write a ton). I would like to write less checks but that doesn’t seem like it’s happening anytime soon. And for stationary, I usually use the metallic gel pens– so I really could stand to part with a couple more pens, no?

On our Instagram, we posted a fun pic with a witty caption that says, “Between pens and lighters, Bic is making a fortune off of people losing their products.” I posted this for a couple of reasons; The first is that it’s funny and possibly true. We buy more than we need because we can’t find what we already own. If we had proper homes for our belongings, we might not lose stuff. And finally, if we had less stuff, it would be easier to keep track of the stuff we own.

I’m bringing up pens because I think it might be an easy category for most folks to start with. You see, we’re starting a new series in which we count stuff we own and compare our quantities to others. There’s no right or wrong answer, it’s more of a study on what we collect, why we collect and how much we collect (or just plain end up with). And if all of this talk about stuff motivates you to go through your stuff (and eventually part with some of it) well then we would be more than stoked.


  1. Pingback: are you a pen pal or card collector? | Bneato Bar

  2. Marcia at Organising Queen August 23, 2015 at 9:04 am

    I have TONS. TONS. But I am a paper gal and I use my pens a lot. When they go dry, I toss immediately.

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Go top