Customer Service And The Booboo


Have you bought a stinker? Not a product that was vaguely disappointing, but one that was defective or at best poorly executed? Too often we just chuck the offender in a drawer rather than return it to the seller or manufacturer. That acquiescence begs for more abuse rather than contributing to the creation of better products.

When an item isn’t worth the effort and cost of return, it is still valuable to let the retailer or manufacturer know that you were dissatisfied and why. Some company representatives are sincerely interested in how they can make use of customer feedback. That might be just the thing to make me try their products again.

Others explain how great they are and that they couldn’t have done anything wrong.

Oh, yeah?

Just lost a customer since my experience was not as perfect as the rep insists it was. Few products are available from only one source, so the competition just earned my future business. Plus if the item gets reviewed, guess which retailer won’t get mentioned?

Which brings me to a related point. Whether your experience has been positive or negative with a product mentioned or reviewed, your comments will, with rare exception, get published here. Wanton bashing might get deleted, but otherwise, go for it. Your opinion is valuable and welcome.



Fountain Pen Day!


Today is the fourth Fountain Pen Day and there are lots of discounts and giveaways to celebrate. But what about your existing collection? Show them a bit of love by treating them to a cleaning and a fill of fresh ink. Or sort and organize the lot to keep your pens cozy and easily accessed.

Fourteen of the little dears jumped into the tray this morning when I mentioned taking a bath. The former sushi container makes transporting them to the kitchen easier than carrying them in my hands. It’s a lot of pens to clean at one time, but I will feel virtuous when the task is completed.

Psst. Don’t tell them, but only three will get filled today. The Platinum #3776MU, the Platinum Century Yamanaka SM and the Conklin Duragraph 1.1mm will be perfect with the five pens already set up for paper tests this weekend. Inks to be determined.

So grab a pen and give it some love. It’s the perfect day for it.



Sunday Links And A Laugh Or Two


This was not a fountain pen week though the Nemosine Singularity 0.8 with Diamine Marine Green and the TWSBI 580 1.1 with Diamine Violet were lovely for journal use. Watercolors took over my limited free time delivering an enjoyable break from the demands of real life. Not much online browsing, but there were a few links worth sharing and even some laughs from the first one.

Sometimes taking the dog out early has its rewards. I want that blue in an ink!

Morning Moon


Sunday Links From Paper To Inks To Pens


Betcha can’t click just one…


Sunday Links From Pens To Watercolors Plus A Book


I do love a worthwhile petition…

Wednesday will be a big day here when Tessa’s first book becomes available at Amazon.


Review: Midori Traveler’s Notebook


Are you acquainted with the Midori Traveler’s Notebook? It’s a journal/calendar/notebook designed to follow you anywhere. Jet Pens introduced me to this brand that has since become a staple in my writing arsenal. The original black and brown leather covers are suitable for even the most conservative work environments, while the flashy, happy, colorful ones made by devotees invite a steady stream of journal entries. But there is more.

In case you aren’t familiar with Midori, there are lots of video tutorials about making covers and inserts (cahiers) and other clever additions to personalize your journal. One useful benefit is that the inserts can be limited to single subjects and archived for future reference.

Midori didn’t invent the cahier, but they did devise a means of connecting several together. What looks like a book is actually a number of inserts that can be removed or swapped for instant customization. Currently my Midori contains three inserts with pen and art related notes and swatches. In January, a calendar will get added. The elastic bands make it simple and easy to add or remove inserts as well as other additions like pockets and folders.

Pictured below is a single insert decked out with washi tape, Post-its, colorful tabs and some pen work. The uncoated and unmarked cardstock cover got along well with a brush pen and glue.

For brief notes, the Passport (90mm x 124mm) will do. For more extensive writing or for large handwriting, the Traveler’s size (110mm x 210mm) will provide room to roam. From minimalist to loaded to painterly, Midori works well for all sorts of uses.

Many of the modifications could be adapted for other journals and notebooks like composition books and Field Notes journals.

Midori paper is excellent with fountain pen ink and comes in a large assortment of styles from blank paper to calendars. It’s easy to see why it has a cult following and a variety of groups on Facebook.

A few DIY videos:

Not into DIY? Let an Etsy artisan do it for you.

Want to try Midori notebooks? Jet Pens has enough variety to get you started. There are plenty of inserts and other goodies available in the Traveler’s size. My favorite notebooks are the grid style #002 and the ultra thin paper #013. However, the Passport is more portable and fits nicely in the hand. I took an old passport cover and adapted it with Midori elastic bands to hold two inserts.

The Midori system is a tactile adventure as well as an excellent journal. Hard to knock it on any level.

The #013 insert contains Tomoe River paper and shows only a slight amount of buckling with watercolor. At 128 pages, this lightweight paper refill gets my vote for best value for money especially since it is excellent with fountain pen ink. Leigh encouraged me to buy one and I am so glad she did.

Stuff&Things Review: Midori Traveler’s Notebook (A Man’s Perspective) Bradley is a fountain pen user and has positive things to say about the paper as well as the format. He has made additional videos about the Midori TN including a modification that makes swapping out a journal very easy.


Playing With Ink


Some folks play with their food. Not me. I’d rather play with ink and paint.


Platinum Pen from Luxury Brands USA. Kuretake Waterbrush and Midori Traveler’s Notebook from Jet Pens.


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