This is an extra special one this week folks as we chat with Chris Leonard-Morgan, or as his friends know him, CLM!
Founder of the London Stationery Show, National Stationery Week and World Stationery Day and a Liveryman of The Stationers’ Company, Chris is a stationery enthusiast to say the least!
Hello Chris. Tell us about how you got into the crazy world of stationery and what was it that got you so hooked?
[CHRIS] I have always liked and of course used stationery and believed strongly in the importance of handwritten communication, but only became involved in the stationery business when researching a stationery and office products exhibition twelve years ago. I soon decided that fashion stationery was the way forward and what excited me most, and launched the first London Stationery Show in 2011. The rest, as they say, is history.
[CHRIS] I had the idea of launching an awareness day for stationery to raise its profile with consumers right at the beginning, and National Stationery Day was born in 2012. It was so popular with consumers and the media that we immediately grew it into National Stationery Week in 2013 and in 2014 added the Get Britain – and Kids – Writing [now ‘Writing matters’) campaign. World Stationery Day followed in 2015.
[CHRIS] I practice what I preach and encourage it at every opportunity – ask my wife, children and grandchildren! It takes effort, but sometimes only a handwritten letter will do! We also send a lot of greeting cards as a family and always have done, but I wish more card publishers would think about the card material they use for people who like to sign with a pen.
[CHRIS] This is a hard one because I have received so many wonderful letters, but one of the most special was the one I received fifty years ago when I was twenty years young telling me I had got the job to become the PA to the owner of the wine merchants Gough Brothers with an annual salary of £1000pa and a company car (a Mini)!
[CHRIS] I have to confess that I don’t use one - my slightly cluttered desk is home to them all.
Are you more of a ballpoint, rollerball or fountain pen kinda guy when it comes to letter-writing?
[CHRIS] Definitely a fountain pen man, followed by rollerball. Never a ballpoint for letters!
A tough one: top five stationery essentials you just couldn’t live without?