12 Facts you never knew about office stationery!


I can guarantee office stationery isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you think of topics for interesting facts.  It often seems the simple things in life we take for granted that is more interesting things. Without any of these tools today – life wouldn’t be the same! So we thank the inventors and influencers for their innovation creations whether it is by accident or clever strategy.

  1. Many years ago before the invention of rubber, people used to use breadcrumbs and the crust of bread as an eraser. By accident, the inventor of rubber picked up rubber instead of breadcrumbs and began removing pencil markings; he suddenly discovered that he could easily remove his markings!
  2. Approximately in 1500BC Egyptians were the earliest known people to have created an object we now call scissors.
  3. Back in the late 19th century when the first machines were developed to bend and cut steel wire. The function of the paperclip was born and based on the principal of elasticity, as articulated by the British physicist Robert Hooke as early as 1678.
  4. Beginning of the early 17th centurycalculators were invented. The first commercial success of the machine was the arithmometer, made by Charles Xavier Thomas de Colmar in 1851.
  5. Pencils are the oldest writing instrument and it originates back to the 16th century, when a graphite deposit was first discovered in Northern England.
  6. The most common stationary equipment, paper, was invented in 105AD during the Han Dynasty and spread slowly to the West via Samarkand and Baghdad. Paper manufacturing in Europe began in the 10th century in Spain and Sicily before spreading to Italy and Southern France, this was before Germany joined the manufacturing paper trade in 1400.
  7. When you’re writing a letter or a document, why is the margin on the left instead of the right? Well, in 1900’s when the modern pad was invented a judge requested a margin be drawn on the left side of his paper. This has now become the first legal pad!
  8. Who is Louis Leitz? In 1896 Louis Leitz (German) invented the very instrument that holds paper together in a folder… A ring binder! His first invention has now been developed by the creation of modern technology but the same original design retains its importance in the workplace.
  9. Around 1440, Printing Press was invented in the Holy Roman Empire by the German Johannes Gutenberg, based on existing screw presses. Gutenberg (a goldsmith by profession) developed a printing system by adapting the existing technology he had.
  10. In 1845 Edwin Hill and Warren de la Rue were granted a British patent for the first envelope-making machine. Almost 50 years passed before a successful machine was built and commercialise for the purpose of producing pre-gummed envelopes. The same envelopes we use today!
  11. Who created the stapler? King Louis XV used his authority to employ someone who we cannot recognise to handcraft the very first staple inscribed with the insignia of the royal court, as required.
  12. Entrepreneur R. Stanton Avery manufactured the world’s first self-adhesive labels in the early 1930’s and made it into the successful business we know today, what a genius!

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