Posts Tagged ‘moleskine’

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More Of Those Eclectic Links

06/01/2014

It was a very weird week, but I did find some good stuff to share…

Flashmob Extraordinaire!

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Markings Journals Meet Fountain Pen Ink

04/22/2014

Three C.R. Gibson Markings journals have been on a shelf waiting review for more than a year. To be sure they are attractive which could be the reason they never got properly filled. My used journals are destined for the recycle bin and Markings are just too nice for that fate. But since you guys like paper so much, putting them to the test made a good project for this month.

The first is a Markings sketchbook (MASA-2) with a Monet Waterlily Pond cover. It contains 130 pages lightly ruled on one side and blank on the reverse. The paper is 6.8″ x 8.9″ and held together with large double rings. Line spacing is 7.5 mm and pale blue so it doesn’t interfere with writing. The paper is soft white and has no tooth but does have a somewhat velvety texture. It’s a comfortable surface for fountain pen nibs and good with other writing instruments as well.

Ink did not show through or bleed through so double-sided use is assured. This is a very nice notebook I will enjoy filling.

The two bound Markings journals are the same style though sporting different covers, one leather (MJ5A-1) and the other embossed metallic (MJ5A-3). Each has 240 pages, a storage pocket, elastic band closure, ribbon marker and lays remarkably flat. Both journals look great and are well made for the price though the 6 mm line spacing might prove too narrow for wide nibs.

The paper color is slightly more yellow than Moleskine though the lines are identical in spacing and color. The weight is similar to Moleskine, but the paper seems to be lightly coated which causes fountain pen ink to suffer inconsistent coverage. Some inks feathered significantly and all of those tested bled through except Noodler’s Black. A Sharpie Pen in black performed well, so other writing instruments ought to get along fine with these journals.

These Markings journals are readily available, attractive and well-made, but unreliable for fountain pen use. Since the feathering and bleed-through are evidence of ink incompatibility, a narrow nib won’t improve performance enough to get a recommendation. However, the right ink will write well enough even with a o.7 mm nib.

What’s the takeaway from these pen tests? Don’t expect uniform paper performance from a manufacturer. Frustrating? You bet. Waste of money? Yep. Add to that the variability of ink performance and it’s hard to recommend any brand without reservation though there are exceptions.

Not for the first time this year only Noodler’s Black performed well. It’s reassuring that there is at least one pen on my desk that should write on most anything. However, it is not fun when my other pens are loaded with pretty inks that won’t work with the journal at hand. Better to stick with what has earned the approval of my inks and pens. That makes me more productive and my pens much happier. Go team!

 

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Links To Enliven A Quiet Day

04/19/2014

Just in case you have some free time today…

 

You write the caption…

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A Bargain Journal That Beats Moleskine Paper

01/16/2014

Get your hard-earned cash ready, but it won’t take much of it to buy this Swinton journal. The medium-sized one I bought today beats the pants off Moleskine paper and the photo proves it.

The Chinese paper is heavier than Moleskine and feels lightly coated. No feathering and only the Rohrer & Klingner produced very mild bleed-through. No show-through or bleed-through with the other inks. Even the notorious Noodler’s Blue Nose Bear performed well. Without filling the journal, I won’t know if other pages will perform similarly, but they feel the same. So I am hopeful.

The binding is stitched and the journal I purchased lays flat easily. It has a slim white ribbon bookmark. I like the width of it as it does not interfere with writing like wide ribbons can.

There are four sizes including small, slim, medium, and large. The medium is 4.7″ x 6.6″ and comes in a variety of covers and closures with a pocket in the back. Line spacing is 6 mm, the same as Moleskine, and it has 160 pages lined on both sides. The paper color is identical to Moleskine, but the lines might be slightly more gray though not darker than Moleskine.

I bought my Fashion Journal in an Office Depot and it appears that Swinton Avenue Trading Ltd. is an exclusive supplier though the journals are not available online. They were displayed in an exclusive kiosk next to the pen and pencils. It was fully stocked so this might be a new product, and if so, could wind up on the website in future.

The label is easily removed leaving a clean back cover.

Now here is another reason to give these journals a try. The small and the slim are $3.99, the medium is $5.99 and the large is $7.99. I like the size of the slim very much, but my handwriting is too large for it. The medium comes with either no closure, an elastic band, or a flap with a concealed magnet. I opted for the latter to protect the pages when traveling in my handbag.

My standards are high if my expectations are low and finding an inexpensive product that takes so well to fountain pen ink was a real surprise. The Fashion Journal from Swinton certainly made my day. Yeah, I’m easy.

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G’bye 2013 – Hello 2014

01/01/2014

Pens, inks and paper make a terrific hobby, but you already know that. Writing about them is my way of sharing the fun of using these tools. You make it worth the effort and for that I thank you.

Some names and numbers…

Thank you for the generous donations that helped keep Inkophile going last fall. My hobby has become a financial challenge. Really. Who wouldn’t want the newest colors of ink and several pricey pens every year? Sometimes retailers or manufacturers offer their newest creations or items they want to move off the shelf for review and that’s very much appreciated. When that doesn’t happen, I would like to purchase new items. Sponsorships and other sources of funding would allow me to do that. So moving forward, there will be some changes at Inkophile. Hopefully, that won’t estrange too many readers, but if you fancy an unsupported pen blog, there are plenty in the sidebar from which to choose.

As my interests have evolved, so has the content of my blog. Watercolor painting plays third fiddle to writing and using fountain pens, but painting in my journal has made it an integrated hobby. If nothing else, the addition of lively color to my wordy journal entries is a creative embellishment that is both intriguing and satisfying. More to come.

This is my favorite doodle of the year. It started as two comma shaped lines at the top and the rest was pure luck.

Copyright © 2013 Margana Maurer. All Rights Reserved.

Gene Kelly in Rose Ink

May your new year be filled with joyful dancing and colorful friends. Hello 2014!

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Lots of Links From Moleskine to Ink to Art

12/15/2013

So much good stuff out there. Where to start…

And lastly a fountain pen-friendly postcard from Kathleen Hall at Good Nature Publishing…

Good Nature Publishing Postcard

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Personalize That Holiday Gift With Décopatch

12/14/2013

Want to make a journal truly unique? Cover it with Décopatch from Exaclair. Even a Moleskine Cahier can look smashing when it’s all dressed up!

Decopatch

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