August 28, 2017

Stationery: Rulers And Stencils

I have collected dozens of rulers and stencils over the years and thought I'd share some of them with you. Some are bog-standard, others somewhat rarer. In the photo on the right you can see your typical 15cm and 30cm plastic and metal dealies, along with a couple of rolling rulers for making parallel lines and arcs, as well as that odd metal protractor-with-a-ruler-attached contraption that I was sent from Hong Kong. The small KDK rolling ruler I picked up for spare change in some el-cheapo shop in the late '90s, while the Seikoshi rolling ruler was given to me in 1989.

These rulers here are an odd bunch: the top pink one was a free gift from my internet provider OCN in 2001 when I was living in Japan. The little dog attachment shuttles up and down the ruler when you tilt it. I'm not sure what purpose it serves other than to make a little noise. Next is a Yikes! novelty bendy ruler, bought in 1995, a slide rule given away as a free gift in the late '80s, and one of those bendable rulers for drawing curves with. Can't remember what they're called.

Now, onto the stencils. The ones you see here all date from the mid-'80s to the mid-'90s. The most dirty and used ones are made by Helix and are unbreakable – many a DIY sign back then was made with these. The larger green one was part of a kids' stationery set and was more of a novelty, as was the Gothic font one. Even now in the age of computer lettering, they have their own charm.

Finally we have two map-stencils from the UK and dated 1976; I wasn't born then, but someone in England gave me 'em. The green one is something anyone who attended high school in Australia would recognize: it's a Mathaid 4, a maths template which we used in school back then. They are still being made, so I guess they're still being used in schools. As you can see, unlike my 35+ year old Helix stencils, Mathaids are not unbreakable. But if you wanted to draw parabolæ, bell curves or sine waves, look no further.

One more stationery post, then it's back to business!