On June 10, 1943, the ballpoint pen was first filed with the U.S. Patent Office. Hence, every year on that day, we recognize the ubiquitous implement by celebrating National Ballpoint Pen Day.

True, it’s not the sexiest pen on the block. It’s not as beautiful as a fountain pen and the ink doesn’t flow quite like that of a gel pen. But it gets the job done, and odds are you’ve got one within arm’s reach of you right now — you just checked, didn’t you? 

Besides, why not rest those texting thumbs for once, and put pen to paper to write an actual letter to a friend or family member...or even your congressman. After all, the pen is still mightier than the sword!  


If you’re taking the time to write a heartfelt letter, you want your handwriting to look its very best.

To that end, it’s important to have a desk with the best writing surface possible. Natural grain and reclaimed materials might look great in coffee tables and shelving, but they’re not ideal for desks where any writing or paperwork needs to be done, because the uneven texture of the wood can cause interference with the flow of your penmanship.

And while you want your words to leave an impression on your friend, you don’t want them to leave an impression on your desk, especially if you’ve invested in a quality piece of office furniture.

BDI’s satin-etched glass surface is smooth for writing and is easy to clean and maintain.

Some finishes such as lacquer and polyurethane will even out inconsistencies while providing some resistance to pressure from your pen.

At BDI, we are especially fond of our satin-etched glass writing surface, which is super smooth for fluid handwriting, easy to clean with a damp cloth, super durable, and, if you do manage to scratch it, easy to buff smooth again. 

Lastly, it lends a clean, luxurious vibe that perfectly complements our sleek, modern aesthetic.


If you don’t have the best writing surface — or if you’re just seeking something with a softer side — a desk pad might be just the thing you’re looking for.

For something simple, Artistic’s KristalView desk pad with Microban, $60, features a non-slip grip to keep the pad in place. You can slide photos and other mementos underneath so that you can look at them while you work, and it’s infused with an antimicrobial product to keep it clean.

The Krystalview desk pad is an option for those without an ideal desktop writing surface.

Those who like to doodle and jot will love Ampad’s plain desk pad, $18, which is more or less a giant sketch pad.

For the ultimate in luxurious trappings, a sumptuous leather desk mat like Decasso’s, $150, features wrapped edging for a finished look and felt backing to protect your desk.

Feeling inspired? We hope so. Now go forth and feel the power of the pen!

Decasso’s leather desk mat provides a premium work surface option.

Do you still hand write personal letters, or have you gone fully electronic with your mail? Let us know your preference in the comments section!