Stabilized Variegated Box Elder Custom Ergonomic Holder

Stabilized Variegated Box Elder Custom Ergonomic Holder


This purchase is for a custom order pen holder to be hand carved specifically for you. All of my holders are entirely handmade and I work through orders on a first come, first serve basis.

This box elder has been stabilized to increase strength and durability, this adds weight to the wood, making for a heavier holder, and lends a very slight translucent quality to the grain. Additionally, this batch has a wide range of tones running through the grain, making the final coloration of a holder very difficult to predict, so choosing this wood is a bit of an adventure. The current stock I have on hand is suitable for slim to chunky grips, and can accommodate holders up to 6" in length.

NOTE:  The stock photo pictured with this listing is typical of the stock I have on hand, but does not show the exact piece of wood your pen will be made from. The wood in the photo has been sanded smooth and wetted to approximate how it will appear once finished. However, there can still be difference in coloration once an actual finish is applied. Since wood is a natural product, variation should be expected and ranges in color and grain may occur. The unique characteristics of certain varieties of wood may be caused by natural processes like mold and insect stress. As such, some species may have indicators of these processes (like pinholes) present. I have attempted to include these kinds of things in the stock photos for woods where they are common. If you have any questions about what to expect with the kind of wood you are interested in, please contact me prior to ordering.

Any/all photos of completed holders associated with this listing are provided only as examples of the results typical of this kind of wood. They are past orders that are NOT available for purchase and NOT included with this listing.

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All custom orders are made specifically for each customer and are proportioned according to the size of your hand and your grip. In order to determine the correct size and unique variation of my design needed to fit your holder for you, you will need to provide me with:

  • At least one photo of your hand gripping an oblique holder like you do when you are writing
  • A measurement of the distance from the middle of the pad of your index finger to where the tail of the holder rests against the web of your hand between your palm and thumb (see Measurement 1 in the photo below)
  • A measurement of the distance from the middle of the pad of your thumb to where the holder sits against your hand (see Measurement 2 in the photo below)

You can provide your photo/s and measurements any time between when you place your order and when I begin carving your holder. Photos should approximate the example below and need to show the angle at which you hold your pen as well as where you place your finger and thumb in relation to the flange. Including a ruler in your photo where I can directly see your measurements is a great way to avoid uncertainty on how to accurately measure. 

You can also request a general grip diameter if you have a preference for a thicker or a thinner holder. Since my holders aren't perfectly round, requested diameters are approximate and I base them on the diameter of the thinnest part of the grip when seen from above with the holder turned so you're looking directly down at the top of the flange.



I offer standard flanges in brass or nickel silver. If you have no preference I'll choose whichever strikes my fancy when fnishing your holder.

Your flange can be fitted for a nib of your choosing as long as I have the same nib in my collection. If you request a nib I don't own, I'll work with you to try to match it with something I do have, or you can send me a nib to work from. If you have no preference, I'll use standard fit that will accept a variety of commonly used nibs

Bullock flanges are available as a separate upgrade option and can be added for your holder by purchasing a Bullock Flange Upgrade from my shop when you place your order. Bullock flanges can accept a wide variety of nibs and are available in either brass or nickel silver.


I seal all my holders with a full coverage coating of cyanoacrylate (CA). This is one of the most durable finishing options available for pens and it creates a hard, high gloss surface that is essentially impervious to ink and water. With proper care, your holder will last many many years without needing to be refinished. The only downside to CA is that it is not flexible so it can sometimes develop micro-cracks over time when applied over more flexible woods. I've found that even in the occasional instances where these cracks do develop, they remain largely waterproof and the life of the finish is still longer than found with other common options like polyurethane, shellac or friction polishes.