Pad and Quill Blog on iPad Cases, iPhone Cases and Technology

  • Mr PQ is pregnant, part 2

    It’s a new year, and here at Pad &Quill we are working with our craftsmen and our designers to roll out new products we love and we believe our customers will think are awesome.  Or in Mr. PQ parlance, 'areaweSOME!!' A compounded mutation of standard English with an obligatory crescendo as he stretches the 3 syllable word to 6.  He can hardly help himself however, as by the time a gold-standard prototype arrives on our marketing desk, the idea has percolated and incubated in his head, heart and soul for 6 months to a year.  Having left the percolating and incubating of the four quills to Mrs. PQ, it’s hard to say he fully understands the concept of being pregnant with a child, but, he fully comprehends the labor of love it is to bring a new product into the world.

    Speaking of pregnancy, I’ve noticed a new trend among our younger friends that brings announcements of new arrivals to an interstellar level of 'areaweSOMEness'. It appears one can no longer frenetically call every person on one’s contact list while one’s wife’s head hangs above the porcelain throne in a bout of morning sickness. Rather, announcing a new arrival has become an event.  An event bolstered by polaroid quality images Snapfish’d into a pleasing birth announcement, a color coded designer cake procured which brings tidings of the child’s gender when served at a smartly catered disclosure event, followed by a strategically placed Facebook declaration of what said child’s name is to be.

    Not being an overtly public person, it can take me a fair amount of rumination before I am ready to release any of my own creative endeavors into the public forum.  Understanding Mr. PQ’s passion for our products, it can take some time for our marketing team to formulate a name that encapsulates what is essential to say about a new product, to evolve a line of descriptive copy that conveys all the 'areaweSOMEness' of a design and to prepare a launch to bring tidings of gladness and great joy regarding our new cases for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 plus.  Next round I think I’ll just order a cake.

    Mrs PQ

  • CES, Prop Bets and the Bella Vida Case

    Mr. PQ and I are headed to the Consumer Electronic Show (CES) in Las Vegas this week.  (Disclaimer: For those savvy social media thugs thinking to burglarize our home while we are away, allow me to dissuade you with the knowledge that a very well-armed housekeeper is on the premises and frankly, you’d be disappointed as we don’t own jack: unless you include Mr. PQ’s invaluable beard grooming kit, which he will most likely take with him as he doesn’t travel anywhere without an impeccably groomed beard).

    Anyhoo.  Back to CES and Las Vegas.  I’ve not returned to Sin City and CES since our first traverse there in 2011.  Pad & Quill was a fledgling company with a few bookbindery cases for iPad and some paper napkin sketches of wallet styled cases for iPhones.   We walked 273 miles of convention center floor, barely surviving the epilepsy inducing lights and carcinogenic haboobs of second hand smoke.  As you can tell, the intensity of my desire to return is surpassed only by Mr. PQ’s enraptured knowledge of my Wild intent to hike a part of the Pacific Crest Trail, as we will be in the vicinity, sort of.

    Not being particularly interested in gambling, for the sake of gambling, the tables and slots hold little allure for either of us.  We might plug a few quarters into a Texas Hold  ‘em machine, while sipping comped drinks and watching NFL playoff games.  What truly intrigue me however, are prop bets.  For the uninitiated, a “prop” bet is a bet constructed as an ancillary to an event.  For instance, Superbowl prop bets might include:  In which quarter will Gisele Bündchen appear on the television camera, sipping Bollinger Blanc de Noir from a crystal flute in her right hand.  Or in which game minute will Jerry Jones come-over flop, in a Chris Christie like frenzy, down the center of his forehead?  And finally, if it is a Romo v Manning Superbowl, which team doctor will be better equipped to intervene with the Heimlich Maneuver, thus saving their team from Superbowl infamy.

    One prop bet I would certainly back is that folks are going to love our new self-propping Bella Vida for iPhone 6 Plus.  This American full grain leather wallet is a well- crafted masterpiece of functionality, replete with the beauty and aesthetic design you’ve come to expect from a Pad & Quill product.  Sadly, for us mere mortals who carry the iPhone 6, the Bella Vida is still in design production, and won’t be immediately available, so I will be stealing Mr. PQ’s iPhone 6 Plus at various times to post comparison pictures of the Bella Vida and various Vegas landmarks.   My contention that it is the small, thoughtful, supportive things that lend to a beautiful life.  Big, bold Vegas may prove me wrong,  but I wouldn’t bet on it.


    (Mrs PQ)

  • Dickens, Whiskey and friends

    An old proverbial saying admonishes “do not look at wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the cup and goes down smoothly”.   I’m guessing ole King Solomon with all his wisdom, did not intend for that to apply to an evening out with Dennis.  Dennis is a rare gem of a man whose townhouse is a veritable reliquary of theatrical and literary lore.  Included among his bookshelves are first editions of Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol”, and original correspondence between members of the Pickwick Club.  A Dickens aficionado, Dennis brought A Christmas Carol to theatres across the country and was thereby invited to an audience at Buckingham Palace to meet Her Majesty the Queen of England.  Additionally, he is a close, personal friend to Cedric Charles Dickens, the great, grandson to the great, literary giant.  Crazy, the people you acquaint with over curry and conversation in an inconsequential cove in the middle of pretty much nowhere.  Pressing into hour three of a four-hour dinner, Dennis pulled our Anna Kendrick look a like waitress aside and whispered in her ear.  Moments later, she appeared with four tumblers of 18 and 20 year old McClellan Scotch Whiskey and a glass of room temperature water.  Distributing the tumblers amongst the table, he broke into the following narrative:

    Several years ago, while savoring a post-production nightcap with Cedric Dickens, who had availed himself for a personal appearance to the audience of the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, Cedric broke out in critique.  “When it comes to drinking whiskey, you yanks have it all wrong, pouring it over ice or dumping cold water into it, allow me to show you how it is properly done.”

    I’m typing in a refined British accent now, so follow along…

    First, you hold glass to the light, observe the amber and caramel tones, swirl the scotch gently in your glass and relish the beauty of color and hue.  

    Next, raise the glass to your nose and allow the heady bouquet to infiltrate your nostrils, prepping your palate for the fete of taste upon which you are about to embark.

    Now, allow yourself one small sip, a mere aperitif, to acquaint yourself with the character of the blend.  While this spot resonates amongst your taste buds, we shall drop 2-3 drops of room temperature water into the glass and give it a brief whorl. Now, it is time to savor.

    Not being a scotch drinker myself, I was a bit dubitable to the process at first.  However, the artisan in me fully appreciated lingering over the complexity of the ritual.  Whiskeys have an amazing array of colors, textures and bouquets that I’d never paused to appreciate.  With that first sip, I was nonplussed; yes this is what scotch tastes like and why I don’t gravitate towards it as a beverage of choice.  However, my mind was veritably blown away upon the second sip as layer upon layer of flavor and character unfolded in my mouth; this from one room-temperature drop of water?  I came to understand a new concept in spirits that evening.  Dare I say, the spirit of whisky past: a suitable mixer for Coke.  The spirit of whiskey present: a beverage Mr. PQ enjoys with a fine cigar by the fire.  The spirit of whiskey future:  when placed in the proper context, when presented in the manner which centuries old tradition demands, when seen through the eyes of the craftsman, Whiskey can be a wholly beautiful thing.

    I look forward to many more meals with Dennis and his lovely wife Anne, and attending the plays he is currently producing:  the outrageously funny Triple Espresso, the wonderfully quirky That Wonder Boy and the debut of To Begin With based on Charles Dickens, “The Life of Our Lord”

    I trust you will be tempted to imbibe in one of the many whiskey leather offerings available in the Pad and Quill online holiday store.



  • He's a Lumbersexual

    I found myself out of town essentially every weekend in September and October largely due to travel with the high school coed mountain bike team and travel to Superior Hiking Trail Association trail clearing weekends.  I'd return Sunday evenings, worn but refreshed from days spent in the fall sunshine, trampling through the woods to cheer or chop, Sherpa or shovel, replete with stories of new acquaintances made and old friendships rekindled.

    At first, Mr PQ held down the home front with the usual grace he affords my little weekend outings, generally teachings the boys to be manly men with hot wing challenges and late night video game duals. But, by about the third week of September, I noticed a subtle change. At first it was things, like a shipment of pine scented beard oil landing on our front door step from CanYouHandleBar. What? He said it was a market research product from a company with which we are loosely affiliated. Then, a parcel from Duluth Trading Company arrived holding a snuggle worthy flannel shirt. No complaints here, but Mr PQ is generally more a Banana Republic guy. Weekend after weekend passed and a subtle suspicion began to creep into the back of my mind. More parcels from Duluth Trading, more beard-care products. Mr PQ whistling off to work, his Red Wing leather boots tromping off into the frost covered world, most assuredly up to something. Twenty five years of faithfulness and respect toward our marriage had me assured that it wasn't another woman, but clearly something was going on in the recesses of that man's brain.

    Whoever said "Absence makes the heart grow fonder" forgot to mention that it also makes the "id" go crazy. I was beginning to fear that with no Mrs PQ around during the non-work weekend hours Mr PQ was slipping into a plaid shirt induced psychosis. It was time for a confrontation. I awoke Sunday morning, a fire crackling in the stove, Mr PQ pipe in hand, reading on the sofa, ultimately confirming my worse fears. It was the matching plaid shirt on top of another plaid shirt that gave him away.

    What screamed through my mind came out as a mere whisper of accusation.

    You...Your're a, a LUMBERSEXUAL??!?!


    (I wrote that in all caps and exclamation points for the benefit of my FB and texting friends who presume that this is the only method for conveying emotional angst and vigor)

    But back to Mr PQ. Yes, the man has turned into a complete Lumbersexual. Including his own Instagram account he just started.  If you don't believe me, read some of the rules he's devised, and try to dispute the facts. Here are a few of his new 'Rules of a Lumbersexual'.

    1. You oil the beard, never moisturize the face.

    2. Flannel is not merely acceptable, it's expected

    3. The only time plaid is not worn is when wearing a suit, tie and cafe racer motorcycle #gentlemansride

    4. Metrosexuals build clothing collections, Lumbersexuals build wood dressers...for their ladies.

    5. Wearing flannel is great, but flannel on flannel is exceptional.


    Personally, I don't mind, I've always liked a man who could swing a big axe.

    Mrs PQ


  • ACT like case making

    “Mom, you know that psych test I told you I failed?  Well guess what, I actually got an “A-“ on it.   Apparently her ADD can also have an effect on her perceived outcomes on tests.   This is the same kid who thinks she is “bad” at running track, but won a varsity letter in track and field her sophomore year, on a team that has won back to back “big” school state championships.  There is a position of being your own worse critic, and then there is the perception of a kid going to school in a wealthy, white suburb where she is surrounded by a student body that averages 26.3 on the ACT, with the top 400 students achieving a 29.  A respectable 21 on same exam can make a person feel “stupid”.  She doesn’t even factor in that her ADD is a 50 pound anchor around her neck when trying to perform on four hour tests that are comprised of filling in little ovals with a number 2 pencil.  In a competitive world it’s always good to accurately assess whom you are competing against.

    Design can feel the same way.   First, Apple presents to the public a mind blowing design that takes function integration to an art form.  Then 100’s of case producers hit the market with their version of a product in which you will encase your iPhone.

    10's of millions of iPhone 6 and 6 plus have been sold and I guarantee the percentage of those buyers who purchase a Pad and Quill case would be demoralizing on the face of it.  But at Pad & Quill we aren’t interested in grabbing market share by producing a cheap piece of silicon.  Our primary focus is to celebrate the craftsmen we employ by bringing to market a case that makes the ACT 29er’s pause, look, then try to replicate.  We mean to delight our customers with design and function that is rarely paralleled.  We strive to make our cases, sleeves and bags an organic extension of the paradigm shift usually associated with an Apple release.

    We believe our cases for iPhone 6 and 6 plus, in addition to our new line for the iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 3 will do just that.


    Mrs PQ

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