News: Maki-e Snow, Moon and Flowers Limited Edition

Pelikan Maki-e Snow, Moon and Flowers

Pelikan updated their Instagram account late yesterday with a post that gives us our first look at the next pen in their 2022 line-up. This one follows the infinitely more accessible M605 Tortoiseshell-Black which has been well received by the community thus far. It should not come as a surprise that we are once again looking at a super exclusive Maki-e release. This is the time of year that we usually see one of these crop up and, while Pelikan has scaled back their release schedule over the past few years, the Maki-e models remain a mainstay. This time, we have the limited edition Maki-e Snow, Moon and Flowers. Pelikan’s announcement relates the following;

“‘Snow, Moon and Flowers’ refers to winter snow, autumn moon, and spring flowers, which are natural beauties in three of the four seasons of Japan, and also conveys the tenderness in the scenery. In addition, it has become a symbolic foundation that supports the aesthetic life of the Japanese people with a calm and peaceful state of mind. ‘Snow, Moon and Flowers’ has been used in various poems and lyrics in praising the beautiful landscapes that strike people’s hearts.”

This newest limited edition will once again be built off of the M1000 chassis and is slated to launch sometime in mid-August of this year.  Like models past, this run will again be limited to just 123 pieces worldwide.

Pelikan Maki-e Snow, Moon and Flowers

Just as we saw with the Seven Treasures (2021), Pelikan’s artist utilized the Togidashi-Taka-Maki-e (Burnished-Raised Maki-e) technique here which is a combination of Taka-Maki-e and Togidashi-Maki-e. It is said that when compared with other Maki-e techniques, a deeper appearing three-dimensional look is possible utilizing this method.  The pen’s motif represents the inherent beauty of the different seasons of Japan as depicted by snow crystals, a full moon, and cherry blossoms all painted on a background sprinkled with golden powder. This is actually a very common theme in Japanese art and design, originally hailing from a poem written by Bai Juyi during the 8th century under the Tang Dynasty. The poem would later gain renewed popularity during the Edo period which occurred between 1603 and 1867.

Pelikan Maki-e Snow, Moon and Flowers

For the most hardcore Pelikan aficionados amongst you, the Snow, Moon and Flowers moniker might look and sound somewhat familiar. Reaching all the way back to 2014, Pelikan hosted a special auction in which 17 pens done in the Maki-e style were sold.  Each pen in that lot was unique, never to be reproduced, with some selling for north of $20,000.  Pen number 9 in that auction was titled “The Beauty of Nature.” In promoting it, Pelikan introduced us to the Japanese word “Setsugekka” which stands for snow, moon and flower. While far from a direct copy, some of those very same design elements that were once only found on “The Beauty of Nature” have now made their way onto the new M1000 Snow, Moon and Flowers.

Pelikan Maki-e The Beauty of Nature
Pelikan Maki-e The Beauty of Nature

Pen No. 9, a lovely M800 titled “The Beauty of Nature” from 2014’s Unique Collection, stands alone as the only one of its kind. Notice how many of the very same motifs first employed here now make their way onto 2022’s M1000 Maki-e Snow, Moon and Flowers

The Maki-e Snow, Moon and Flowers comes with an 18C-750 two-tone gold nib in a medium width though the pen will accommodate any M1000 nib that you might wish to install after the fact. The pen’s furniture consists of the standard Souverän fare which means a gold plated beak clip, two cap bands, two trim rings at the piston knob, and a single trim ring at the section.  The cap top is adorned with Pelikan’s single chick logo amidst a background done in a similar style as the rest of the cap and barrel.  A dark green ink view window sits behind the section, similar to past releases.  Each pen will be individually numbered and will include the artist’s signature. As has been the tradition, this model will come packaged within a gift box made of paulownia wood.  Worldwide retail pricing is as of yet unclear, but it is certainly not for the faint of heart. US retailers appear to be asking $4,800 which is just a touch higher than the Seven Treasures retailed for in the US ($4,640).  This one gives me the same vibes that the Seven Treasures did though perhaps this design is just a little less busy. I think that those who gravitate towards these Maki-e releases will be satisfied but, thanks to the ultra-limited numbers and high price tag, that is only a select lucky few amongst us.  Still, it’s fun to dream of what could be and this is yet another insanely beautiful model that does not have to be owned to be appreciated for its beauty and artistry.  What are your thoughts on the Maki-e Snow, Moon and Flowers fountain pen?

Pelikan Maki-e Spring & Autumn (2016), Dragonfly (2017), Peacock (2018), Five Lucky Bats (2019), Japanese Umbrella (2019), Kingfisher (2020), and Seven Treasures (2021)

Six Years of Maki-e M1000s, left to right: Spring & Autumn (2016), Dragonfly (2017), Peacock (2018), Five Lucky Bats (2019), Japanese Umbrella (2019), Kingfisher (2020), and Seven Treasures (2021)

12 responses

  1. A really gorgeous collectible . I remember that Namiki had launched a limited edition with the same theme . But pelikan looks less textured than namiki. This also caused the disparity in price between them .

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    • I’m familiar with the Namiki model that you reference as part of my research for this piece. The two pens have a very different look about them despite the same theme. I think that Pelikan’s implementation fits in well with their past examples. Its a safe design that I’m sure will sell out without issue.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. While I admire the craftsmanship and appreciate the beauty, I just wish that Pelikan would do more with the basic M1000 model. A tortoiseshell or a vibrant finish, perhaps? Something, at least, more accessible in price.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I don’t disagree with that sentiment. My suspicion has always been that sales drive those decisions. Being a larger pen, I can’t imagine that the M1000 has the same broad appeal or sells in nearly the same volume as an M600 or M800 might. I’m sure that if it did, there would be motivation for Pelikan to bring more special editions to sell more units. It seems that the M1000 line is mostly relegated to these special type editions which are out of reach for the masses.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. As the 1000s are not my thing, I will leave these to someone else to enjoy. (The 800s are more my gig). Now if they ever come around with the art inspired pens mentioned in your August 2021 post…. that”s a different story!

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  4. Honestly, I am somewhat disappointed at this pen compared to the Peacock, Dragon fly, Autumn flowers etc in terms of the quality of design and workmanship, considering it is at the same price point or higher.
    Suresh

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    • Of those that you mention, I find the Dragonfly the most appealing. I don’t think the workmanship is any less but I think this was just a less ambitious design when compared to something like the Kingfisher.

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  5. Quite underwhelmed with this year’s Maki-e release, to be honest. I’ll save my pennies for the Namiki Emperor release later this year.

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