Okay, so maybe most of us are on a computer these days rather than writing anything by hand. Still, that shouldn’t stop you from customizing pencils for your next event. With the right creativity and stylish flair, these simple giveaways can be pretty cool and exciting!

Say goodbye to boring pencils, and hello to fun pencils that everyone will love. This design guide shows you how to make it happen!

Why Do You Need Custom Pencils?

First things first, let’s figure out why you need customized pencils. These are great items to have on hand, especially if you’re part of any of the following:


Laptops haven’t completely taken over the classroom quite yet. Pencils imprinted with your school name are still a must for pop quizzes and in-class essays.

Testing Center

Mistakes happen. It’s important that test takers have a pencil with a good eraser on the top as they fill out those papers or scantrons. The name of your center on the barrel gives each pencil a personal touch.

Writing Workshop

Ernest Hemingway once said: “I belong to this notebook and pencil.” You might encourage the next literary masterpiece if you have cool custom pencils ready to use at your next writing workshop.

Art Class

You can never have too many pencils for your art class, especially ones with a custom imprint on the barrel. They’re handy for drawing, shading, line work, and sketching out different ideas.


A good carpenter always has a pencil in their toolbelt. It’s a useful item to have on hand when it comes time to measure, whether it’s for floors, roofs, or hanging up pictures. A custom imprint is a nice touch that helps you take even more pride in your work.

Golf Course

Stop any arguments on the green with a golf pencil. These are a must for keeping score in everything from mini golf to a full-blown tournament.


Do you plan on having goodie bags for all the guests at your fundraiser? Maybe you want a little something to sell for extra cash. Either way, custom pencils are an easy and extremely affordable solution!

Trade Show

The #1 rule of a trade show: Never show up empty-handed. Custom pencils are easy to pick up from your booth, and they help people remember you when the show’s over.

You may not be part of a school or golf course, and maybe you’ve never heard of a trade show in your life, but that’s okay! A good pencil is one of those things everyone’s going to need at some point, so it’s always a good giveaway, no matter what the occasion.

Tips for Customizing Your Pencils

Now that you’re ready to make pencils part of your event, let’s figure out how to make them look awesome. Follow these design tips!

  1. Be creative with the look.
  2. Stick with a few words and/or a small image.
  3. Have fun with the colors.
  4. Print under the eraser.

Be Creative with the Look

Does the idea of a simple pencil make you yawn? Well, then it’s time to get creative! Give any of these fun ideas a whirl.

Unusual Shape

A unique shape makes a pencil instantly more memorable. Hearts for wedding favors, music notes for guitar classes, palm trees for travel agencies… you get the idea!


The iridescent craze is at an all-time high. Forget the unicorns and mermaid tails, you can get this trendy look right on your pencils!


Try glow-in-the-dark pencils instead of candy next Halloween. It’s definitely a much healthier option!


About 82,000 trees are cut down every year to make pencils. Help make the world a little greener by customizing eco-friendly pencils instead of regular wooden ones.


Move over mood rings, there’s a new color-changing item in town! The barrel changes from one gradient to the next as you write, which makes these pencils fun giveaways for kids.


A little bit of sparkle goes a long way. Glittery pencils are great for holiday events, salons and spas, and book fairs.

Foil Wrap

There was a big boom for foil wrap pencils in the 90’s. Bring back this old favorite and choose a design that reflects your business or event!


Neon signs are designed to catch people’s eyes. Your pencils can have that same gravitational pull when you choose fun, fluorescent colors.


Do you remember the old rubber pencil trick? Well, you’ll blow everyone’s minds if your pencil is actually flexible and bendy!


Pair your custom design with an extra decorative touch, like stars or hearts up and down the barrel. A colorful matching eraser is the cherry on top!


If you have a hard time choosing just one color for your pencils, go with them all! Rainbow pencils are always in style.

Try Mechanical Pencils

You can also customize mechanical pencils, which is an especially good idea for schools. After all, the cool kid in class always has a mechanical pencil!

Stick with a Few Words and/or a Small Image

Less is more. You only need to print one or two of the following on your pencil’s barrel:

  1. Name
  2. A Simple Message
  3. Small Clipart Image
  4. Phone Number
  5. Email
  6. Website

If your company name happens to be really long, or you just have a lot to say, that’s okay. Most of the time, your design can wrap all the way around the pencil’s barrel from the front to the back.

Have Fun with the Colors

Yellow is to pencils as blue is to the sky, but it’s perfectly fine to think outside of the box. Try any of these color combos!

#1: Dark Pencil with Silver or Gold Ink

#2: Metallic Pencil with Black Ink

#3: Monochrome

You want to keep your ink colors to a minimum as the more you use, the higher the charge for printing. The good news is you only need to print one color on the barrel to get a nice, clean design.

Print Under the Eraser

You can’t avoid sharpening your pencils forever! A good rule of thumb is to make sure the design is printed as close to the eraser as possible. This helps keep it from sharpening off too quickly.

After all, you wouldn’t want your pencil’s barrel to read: “Anne’s Buttered Popcorn” only to have the sharpening change it to “Anne’s Butt” That would just be weird.


Why Do We Love Pencils?

Pencils are almost like an extension of our hands. We use them for creative works, like drawing pictures and writing stories, and for important tasks like finishing a test or jotting down our grocery list.

Eye Level Bolingbrook, a learning center that’s been open since 2014, knows all too well the value of a good pencil. The center has thousands of custom pencils readily available for their students. The color-changing pencils in particular are a huge hit with the kids and are handed out as a gift when they sign up for the program.


So go ahead and customize pencils for your next event. They’re extremely affordable and useful… everything you want in a good promotional product!

“Using pencils gives students a chance to fix their errors and gives them a sense of accomplishment. Writing it out helps them remember their approach to solving problems for a longer time.”

– Fazeetha Rahman, Director of Eye Level Bolingbrook

The Bottom Line

This is a digital world, but sometimes the old-fashioned stuff makes the biggest impression. Put love and attention into customizing your pencils, and you’ll get love and attention in return!

About the author

Alyssa Mertes

Alyssa is a promo expert with over four years of experience in the industry. She is the Lead Copywriter at Quality Logo Products and has had work published for the Promotional Products Association International and the Advertising Specialty Institute.