Cartier Standard Editions

Disclaimer on Pricing and Valuation

  • Cartier started producing writing instruments (pencils, mainly) back in 19th Century, but these were bespoke pieces made of precious metals and specific to customers' requests. Focussing mainly on high-end jewellery, watches and custom made accessories, Cartier came late into the mainstream pen business.  The first range of pens commercially available was the Vendôme line, launched in the early 1970s, and named after the famous Parisian square where some of France's most recognised luxury brands are based.

    As befits the Cartier name, the Vendôme range was seen as a jewellery piece and a pen with a feminine appeal, not only because of its peculiar oval shape, but also due to its actual size and design peculiarities, such as the 3-gold rings adorning the top of the pen (based on the "Trinity" ring initially created in 1929), the strange refill system and cartridge format, the rotational nib, and the clever design of the clip which was "hidden" until the top of the cap was pressed.

    The Vendôme line consisted of a ballpoint and fountain pen in several finishes, namely metal guilloché versions and others lacquered in solid colours and marbled combinations. It remained in production until the 1980s and gradually replaced by the "Trinity" pens.
Cartier Vendôme Malachite Lacquer Fountain Pen

Good Value
Online/Auction Values
Specialty Store Pricing
Metal Ballpoint Pen
€ 145
€ 92 to € 376
Metal Fountain Pen
€ 200
€ 300 to € 334
€ 220 to US$ 414
Lacquer Ballpoint Pen
€ 160
€ 166 to € 392
Lacquer Fountain Pen
€ 240
€ 180 to € 795
Sheldon Rarity Factor: (R3***) Scarce / (R4****) Very Scarce - lacquer versions

Disclaimer on Pricing and Valuation
The prices given here are the low and high average found on the international market between the years 2014 and 2017. The difference between the lowest and the highest values can be due to such factors as the state of preservation, the provenience, the reputation of the seller, and the completeness of the offer (original case, documentation, ink accessories, etc.). Every collector should be fully aware of the difference between selling prices and purchase prices, and between passion and investment.
Against the normal "market pricing", the following table provides some guidelines for the valuation and negotiation of collectible (not current) fountain pens as per their condition.

No signs of use, New Old Stock, boxed and fully documented, not inked ever
No discernable user markings, boxed, dipped or once ink filled
All parts original, slight signs of use, slight surface scratches, minor discolouration, crisp imprints, trim or body with no significant brassing, no dings, may be boxed, fully working
All parts original, some signs of use, surface scratching, brassing, light discolouration, fully functional
Not all parts may be original, heavy sign of use, worn imprints, used look, may need repairs, dings/stratches, medium discolouration
Not working, missing parts, cracks, strong discolouration, very visible dings
Another devaluation scale may be considered for particular typologies of damage
Nib is twisted but working
- 5%
Nib is not original
- 20%
Personal name or advertising engraved
- 10%
Small dents in metal body/cap
- 10%
Significant dents in metal body/cap
- 30%
Small scratches/cracks in resin body/cap
- 10%
Very visible scratches/cracks in resin body/cap
- 35%
Without cap or wrong cap
- 20% to - 35%
Brand missing in cap (when applicable)
- 5% to - 15%
Without clip, broken clip or wrong clip
- 15%
Piston system is leaking (when applicable)
- 5% to - 20%
Piston system is not functioning (when applicable)
- 30% to - 35%
Safety mechanism is not functioning (when applicable)
- 30% to - 45%
Lever ink system not functioning(when applicable)
- 15%
No ink sack for lever ink system (when applicable)
- 5%