Invented in the late 19th-century, the ballpoint is now the world's most-used writing instrument. Ink is dispensed through a tube over a metal ball (steel, brass or tungsten carbide) at its tip. The ink is a paste containing dye and oils which dry quickly, although the drying time varies depending on the viscosity of the ink and the diameter of the ball - larger balls dispense more ink and creating a longer drying time.
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In Carytown since 1979, the shop has been owned by Heather Holub and Kelley Banks, Virginia Tech grads and architects, since 2013. Merrymaker continues to bring fine quality stationery and invitations to the Richmond area and beyond.