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Celebrating a century of Excellence

PARKER

CELEBRATING A CENTURY EXCELLENCE

NEWS - May 1, 2021

London: 2021 marks 100 years since the launch of the iconic PARKER Duofold and to celebrate this century of excellence, PARKER proudly honours the traditions of this fine writing instrument with the release of this Limited Edition.

Created during the ‘Roaring Twenties’ the Duofold embodied the exuberant style and daring attitudes of the decade. Duofold 100 pays tribute to that bold and progressive spirit with a modern interpretation of three of its most iconic finishes: Black, Big Red, and Blue Lapis Lazuli.

Each pen comprises 21 components, individually hand-assembled with expertise and a dedication to craftsmanship that is a fitting tribute to George S. Parker’s pursuit of excellence.

Available first as a Limited Edition collector’s set of just 100 pieces, and then individually for 12 months in the ultimate celebration of this icon.

An embodiment of the Roaring Twenties

The Duofold captured the zeitgeist of the ‘Roaring Twenties’ - a period of extravagant culture and a time when the public embraced new styles and rejected many traditional codes. It was an era embodied by the Art Deco movement and the first ‘Big Red’ Duofold exemplified the spirit of the age.

At a time when the world was filled with black pens, PARKER made a bold statement with its emblematic red finish which paved the way for many more colours including Blue Lapis Lazuli, Jade Green, and Mandarin Yellow.

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Experimental Origins 1920s

George Parker had built a successful 30-year business that had a well-deserved reputation for high quality, craftsmanship, and innovation, and the early Duofolds certainly maintained those standards. PARKER began to manufacture Duofolds from resin in the 1920s as it had several advantages over hard rubber. It was stronger and could be produced in many different colours. 

A simple experiment carried out by George’s two sons Kenneth and Russell while he was travelling gave birth to the ‘Big Red’ and paved the way for not only PARKER but the entire pen category. “To determine if there was any interest in adding to the original black pen, Kenneth and Russell decided to test an unusual red-orange version of Duofold on the market. The results of that test completely revolutionized not just Duofold, but the entire pen industry” recalls Geoffrey S. Parker, Great-Grandson of founder George S. Parker.

Inspired by Experimental Duofolds of the 1930s

By the 1930’s PARKER had begun experimenting with the Duofold by fusing different coloured materials together, in order to make alternating bands of colour. These experiments ended up paving the way for the PARKER Vacumatic.

A patent was filed in 1932 for the design which would stay in market until the late 1940’s and remains one the most revered classic pens until this day.

Duofold 100 takes inspiration from those experimental pens of the early 1930’s by fusing multiple thin layers of precious resin together giving the striped appearance you see once the cap and barrel have been formed.

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Exceptional Craftsmanship

PARKER’s exceptional craftsmanship is present in every aspect of Duofold 100. Each pen comprises of 21 hand-assembled pieces combining stunning craftsmanship with meticulous precision living up to George S. Parker’s mantra that ‘it will always be possible to make a better pen’.The cap jewel and nib proudly bare Duofold’s symbol of excellence, the Ace of Spades motif, alongside the years ‘1921-2021’ to mark the anniversary. The 18k solid gold, bi-tonal nib with rhodium highlights is hand-polished and manually assembled, delivering precise, flawless lines. 

The barrel has been carefully engraved and inlaid with gold foil to display the iconic ‘Geo. S Parker’ markings that adorn classic Duofold’s.The most impressive detail of all is the process in which the cap and barrel pattern is formed.Each of the pens is made up of three contrasting coloured resins which have been sliced and fused together forming four unique cross sections. Each cross section is then bonded together to create the stunning striped aesthetic.The technique is called diffusion bonding, which allows layers of material to be joined without the use of solvents or adhesives. Each pen remarkably contains around 300 individual pieces of resin!

Three Iconic Colours

With its long line of bold, daring colours, selecting only three for this 100th Anniversary is no easy task. But the contemporary representation of the original Black, Big Red, and Blue Lapis Lazuli more than justifies their inclusion.

Black

Officially not a Duofold, the Black No. 26 model safety pen provided the blueprint for the first PARKER Duofold. After the success of the ‘Big Red’ Duofold launch in 1921was introduced, the black version was added to and remained in the assortment permanently.

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Lapis Lazuli

The intense blue Lapis Lazuli was originally launched in 1927, creating a lively and diverse addition to recapture market share in the now competitive coloured pen market. ‘Lapis Lazuli’ references the deep blue gemstone that shares the same name. To recreate the appearance of the gemstone, small blue and white flecks were added to give it extra depth and lustre. Lapis is the Latin word for stone, and Lazuli is derived from the Arabic word ‘Azul’ denoting the colour Blue.

Big Red

The original bold colour of the Duofold Big Red put to rest the belief that the public preferred their pens in black and set the stage for the widespread adoption of coloured pens that followed worldwide during the 1920’s. From the start, the Big Red’s disruptive, energetic colour stirred the interest of consumers and remained the only available colour in Duofold until the Jade Green version was introduced in 1926. Until this day, the Big Red remains an emblematic, and most iconic finish in the PARKER and Duofold history.

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The Gift Box

With only 100 units produced for sale, the stylish Limited Edition gift box enhances the whole opening experience for Duofold 100. The wooden exterior is coated in a glossy black lacquer. The box interior is made of a soft black suede material as is the cushioned platform that holds the three Limited Edition pens.

Each pen is individually numbered from 1-100 and like all contemporary PARKER pens, a converter has been fitted. Below the platform is a certificate of authenticity signed by Geoffrey S. Parker, a Limited Edition booklet, and a box of 5 long cartridges.

The single pen is available in PARKER’s prestige gift box and will be available for 12 months.