UPDATED (ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED JUNE 18, 2020 12:13 AM)
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A pencil cup is a desk necessity: a simple and small go-to that cuts down on the clutter in your work space. Whether you’re trying to organize your crafting materials, store all of those extra paper clips, or simply keep your mismatched pens and pencils together in one place, a pencil cup is a great way to do so. In the category, variety abounds. Some cups are made of open and lightweight metal mesh, others of heavier ceramic; some prioritize durability, while others give more of a nod to appearance. And hey, you might even want to use a coffee can, à la Jasper Johns! Ahead, find our top choices.
1. AmazonBasics Wire Mesh Pen Cup
Keep it classic with a black steel wire-mesh cup, sure to last longer than most without being heavy or cumbersome. At 3.9 inches tall, it is a bit on the short side, so it’s definitely better for pencils and pens than for tall, heavy scissors and longer tools.
2. Jam Paper Plastic Pen Holder
JAM Paper, in business since 1983, is known for its colorful, high-quality stationary products. While any pencil holder is a great organizational tool for desks, work spaces, artists’ studios, and the like, JAM’s version takes it to the next level. Sold in a rainbow of tones, this plastic rectangular box includes two compartments for separating your pens from your pencils, or your markers from your brushes. And, with sharp corners and flat sides, multiple holders look great when grouped together.
3. Muji Stainless Pen Stand
There are few materials more durable than stainless steel, so if you’re seeking something that can hold more than just pencils, it’s time to look to this kind of cup. This beautifully designed cup is easy to clean, won’t break if dropped, and blends into any desktop décor, be it an office space or an artist’s studio.
4. Café Du Monde coffee can
If you’re on a budget, or maybe just want to feel like an artist from an earlier time, consider storing all your favorite materials in a coffee can. It’s great for starving artists because you can drink the coffee and then use the can as a catchall. While Johns’s beloved Savarin isn’t around anymore, Café Du Monde is, and we highly recommend it.
5. Leatherology Modern Pencil Cup
Made of coated Italian leather, this pencil cup is a true statement item on any desk. And with its side-snap construction, it can actually lay flat for storage when not in use. It boasts a classy, minimalist design that fits into the more luxe décor that you may have on your office desk. Due to its quality materials and meticulous construction, the price tag is pretty hefty, but this cup will certainly hold its own with other high-end desk items, if that’s what you seek.