Archive for the ‘Paper’ Category

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A Boatload of Paper

01/30/2015

Late last week I received a box of paper products from a friend who shares my paper hoarding affliction. You know the symptoms. Buy tons of paper retail, on sale, discounted, whatever, but often in quantity with hopes one product will be so ideal for fountain pen ink that you experience a state of bliss whenever you see, touch or put a pen to it. Not sure if that is over the top or dead-on, but if it sounds familiar, you are in good company.

Here is the dilemma I faced over the weekend.

Where to begin with so many choices? I finally gave myself a nudge and removed one plastic wrapper. But that’s as far as I got. The journals just looked too perfect to abuse with scribbles and such.

However, reviews take hands-on experience. So after the wrappers are removed, pen and ink tests will follow for writing paper and watercolor tests for the art paper. Call it initiation. Those that pass, join the hoard. Those that don’t, land in the giveaway box. On occasion, a format doesn’t thrill me, so even good paper can get tossed. It’s a simple system even though my collection seems to expand no matter what I do.

But isn’t that a good thing?

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Inexpensive Paper That Loves Fountain Pens

01/15/2015

Need an inexpensive paper that can handle ink flow from wide nibs? This letter sized TOPS pad (20490 V2) came from Staples last week and it loves fountain pens and fountain pen ink.

The surface is very smooth and while there is mild ghosting, only one ink showed a few dots of bleed through. The 6mm line spacing will work for most anyone. The lines are crisply rendered, but pale enough to provide no conflict with your written words. It is a light weight paper more like Tomoe River than Rhodia or Clairefontaine which explains the ghosting. But at $1.49 a pad, this paper is a steal. Permission granted to be a guilt-free thief.

Caveat: Please read the comments. This review is about a specific batch that works well with fountain pen ink. Other batches may not perform as well as one reader discovered.

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Miquelrius Ink And Watercolor Tests

01/10/2015

Much to my surprise, the Miquelrius journal paper handles watercolor from a waterbrush better than ink from a wide fountain pen nib. Admittedly the brush was on the dry side, but still there is a lot of doodling that can be done this way. Note that there was no bleed through. The show through is on par with the weight of the paper and similar to Tomoe River.

As for my continuing pen and ink experiments, a Lamy Safari EF with Noodler’s Black has proven the best match so far. Noodler’s General of the Armies works well, too. Some inks feather while others bleed through enough to make the back of the paper useless. However, at the price point of around $10 and for the amount of paper, these journals could be used up and trashed without regret which makes them perfect for having a little fun with ink, paint, stamps and some other doodads. And fun is what it’s all about.

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Orange As An Antidote

01/07/2015

To counter the gray day, color invaded my desk.

What perks up your day?

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Selecting A Journal For The New Year – Part 2

01/06/2015

Best laid plans and all that. The Miquelrius journal has been a disappointment. The paper bleeds worse than the paper in my copier so I’m looking for something better. Kp offered to send a few journals from her stash and I will post the results in time. If all else fails, a Stillman & Birn Epsilon or Zeta may have to heed the call although I prefer them for other duties than my day to day musings. A lined or grid format is really essential to keep my writing on the straight and narrow, but decorating pages with watercolor is necessary, too. The search continues…

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Closing Out 2014

12/31/2014

Now that the year is over, a brief recap is in order. I had hoped to adopt a canine companion, but finding a rescue that wouldn’t trigger allergies proved illusive. However, my collection of tools expanded with some new favorites.

  • Platinum #3776 Century Nice and Nice Pur since they are clearly brilliant.
  • Conklin Duragraph Stub for a well-priced wide nib with character.
  • Noodler’s General of the Armies because I love blue-green ink.
  • Iroshizuku kon-peki for an all-purpose blue.
  • J. Herbin Orange Indien since I’m a sucker for orange.
  • Sailor Tokiwa-Matsu when only evergreen will do.
  • Tomoe River Paper for fountain pens and even a dab of watercolor.
  • Clairefontaine for it’s variety of formats and fountain pen friendly paper.
  • Stillman & Birn for watercolor and art journals.

A big thank you to Exaclair, Stillman & Birn, Luxury Brands USA, Jet Pens, and Paper for Fountain Pens for sending so many wonderful products to enjoy and review. Without your generosity, Inkophile couldn’t exist.

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Selecting A Journal For The New Year

12/30/2014

After following Mia’s work in a Hobonichi this past year, is it any wonder this journal topped my list for 2015? The Tomoe River paper is delightful and the layout and covers are attractive and well-made. The largest version is in the right range for my wide nibs and would still leave enough room for doodles and ink swatches. Unfortunately, the Hobonichi is not in my budget.

There are stores that sell Tomoe River paper in journals, but not in the grid format with which I want to experiment this next year. Paper For Fountain Pens, Nanami Seven Seas and Jet Pens have lined and blank paper if that might work for you. Jet Pens sent some blank sheets that I might put together for an ink journal once my Clairefontaine is full.

Uncertain what to use for a daily journal, I put aside the decision for another day and decided to look for a Noodler’s ink to write holiday notes. It was rather dark in my office so I used a flashlight to see the back of the bottom shelf and look what I found.

Two Miquelrius grid notebooks! They lack the cachet of Tomoe River, but they have a ton of pages and are very fountain pen friendly. These journals are too heavy to carry around so that is one drawback. Otherwise, they will do. And the budget nanny is pleased indeed.

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