Sunday Reads: Pens And Cats Are Cool


If you are not familiar with David Isaacson and Vacumania, now is the time to get acquainted. He knows more about pens than the rest of us combined and he always has beautifully restored vintage pens on offer. At the other end of the spectrum, Fountain Pen Quest reviews disposable pens. It may not be your cuppa, but it is the safest way to introduce a novice to fountain pens without risk to your precious and pricey babies…


Sunday Reads: Pens, Inks and Paper. Oh, my!


No lions, tigers or bears, but a few pen and ink links. Oh, and one piece about going to Mars for those who like to travel…


A DIY Journal With Tomoe River Paper


It is always satisfying to assemble a DIY journal for a new year. For 2018, I discovered a leather passport case that will accommodate two Traveler’s Notebooks. It makes a small and lightweight companion that takes up little space, but looks great and offers enough pages to keep the writer in me creative and content.

The notebooks come in diary, blank, grid and lined editions all with fountain pen friendly paper. I prefer the Traveler’s #005 with Tomoe River paper that Leigh Reyes introduced me to a few years ago. Tomoe takes fountain pen ink like a champ, but also holds up to a light watercolor application which makes it fine for small sketches or to add extra color to written pages.

The Sea Green (more teal than turquoise) cover from Banuce is eye-catching and just the right size for the Traveler’s Notebook. It has lots of slots for credit cards, stickers, and other bits and pieces. Another passport-sized cahier might fit, but the Moleskine does not. I might purchase the coral to house all those lists and task notes that clutter my desk. Two notebooks doesn’t seem excessive when it comes to being organized, does it?

The leather is smooth to the touch, but firm enough to give the journal a solid writing surface. Either a writing board or a piece of blotting paper will protect lower sheets, but Tomoe has rarely bled through in my experience. The cover folds back easily for notes on the go.

The snap clasp will keep everything firmly inside. The corners are slightly round, and the stitching consistent. The black edging offsets the striking color and gives the journal a finished look.

The only drawback is the over-sized stamp of the manufacturer’s name. It would have been more subtle centered on the lower edge of the back cover.

This is not a pricey item and durability is hard to predict, but it should last through the coming year. It arrived attractively packaged should you want to give it as a gift. Add a Traveler’s Notebook and any writer would be happy to fill the pages. For less than $15, the cover and notebook make quite the bargain.

Banuce passport covers here and here. Traveler’s Notebook with Tomoe River paper. J. Herbin Blotter Paper. Taroko Design Pencil Board. All links are to Amazon. When you purchase through my links, I get a tiny commission but every penny helps keep this Inkophile supplied with new items to review.


Sunday Reads: Handwriting, Ink, And A Chrome Warning


A diverse group of links…


Pelikan’s European Price Increase


The Pelikan’s Perch has a comprehensive post about the price hike and a theory behind the increase. The comments to the article add to understanding how Pelikan aficionados view the situation.

At its peak, there were a dozen Pelikans in my collection. That number has been cut by half so I remain an enthusiast. My modern M400 has been a solid worker for many years though it needed adjustment before it truly suited my hand. It has a fine nib with no drag and significant flow. There are days when it is the perfect pen though it is never inspiring since I like lines with at least a modicum of character. The fine has none. Round nibs aren’t expected to so that isn’t a fault. Just something that is.

The current offering of just five nib sizes does not appeal to me and I would not spend the going rate for any of them. In the past, Pelikan offered a huge variety of nibs but that has long since ceased to be. That deficiency in addition to the escalating prices makes older and vintage Pels more appealing. Not that you can’t spend a goodly sum on a vintage pen, but why buy new when there are gems on offer that are far more exciting to use.

Platinum and Pelikan Pens
Binder Modified Pelikan Stub

Pelikan M400 with Waterman Florida Blue Ink

Pelikan 400 Tortoiseshell Brown (1951-1954) Quick Fountain Pen Review

Pelikan M400 (Old Style, 1982-1997) Tortoiseshell Brown Quick Fountain Pen Review


Sunday Reads: The Perfect Crime, Neil Gaiman And Ink


The Perfect Crime tells a complete story, beginning, middle and end, in twelve seconds. It’s YouTube storytelling at its best.


Sunday Reads: Pens, Journaling And Animals


Beautiful images at the first link. Kudos to the photographer. If you aren’t a pencil lover yet, Ana might persuade you…

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