The very first the Papelaria Fernandes shops opened in what was then Rua do Rato in 1891. The first quarter of the 20th century saw major development in the business, as the shop was supported by a large factory where up to 1,500 people worked in several shifts, 24 hours a day. Shops, cafés and restaurants sprung up to serve so many people, giving rise to Largo do Rato as we know it today. The factory began with typography and the manufacture of envelopes, later expanding into bookbinding, printing, engraving and carton packaging.
Over the more than 100 years of its existence, Papelaria Fernandes has expanded the range of office and fine arts materials available in the city. It was, for example, the first shop to sell glazed paper. A lot of people come here knowing what they want to do but are not sure how to do it or what the best materials for the job would be. Which is why personalised service is important, particularly considering that the customer has to be guided through the shop’s more than 20,000 products.