I have been using Holbein colored pencils, the 150 set, that my son brought back for me from Japan (thank you again son!!). There are some amazing colors that I can't find in any other set of CP. I was attempting to buy some open stock pencils (I did find a wonderful fellow Wetcanvas member who lives in Japan who bought me some, but it was a long and expensive process). Anyway, I contacted Holbein in Japan directly via email and I received the following message. Holbein pencils are being reformulated to meet US standards and will be introduced into the US market sometime this year, and they will be available in open stock. Cheers! Here is the email I received from David Hopper, President of Holbein, Japan:
We will be introducing the line into North America mid year and there will be a number of Retailers who will carry open stock. thank you for your inquiry. A number of the colors will have adjusted formulas in order to avoid Health Labeling.
HK Holbein Inc