h1

New Noodler’s Ink Labels

05/24/2022

In my email this morning was an announcement from the distributor that “Noodler’s is going back to where it all started, the Catfish! Most of the new ink labels have the classic Noodler’s label of the Catfish. Some labels have descriptions below the catfish picture explaining the ink properties.”

To be honest, when I think of Noodler’s, I always picture the catfish. Certainly there have been other memorable labels, but the catfish is the one that stays with me.

Here is a peak at what is to come.

 

 

 

h1

Inkquiring Minds: TWSBI Declares WAR on Moonman and Narwhal

05/17/2022

Are you interested in a pen world controversy? This excellent video lays it out nicely and some of the comments add to the tale. If nothing else, it is a distraction from world events and the political posturing the media serves us.

Full disclosure: I am months into writing an extensive review of converter pens offered by Moonman, Delike and Majohn. A Delike New Moon 2 fude has been my #1 pen for over a year while the TWSBI 580 hasn’t been filled once. The Delike is a better fit in my hand, is very attractive and its nib is perfect for my journal paper and line-spacing. It’s my if-you-could-only-choose-one pen.

Knockoffs are a frustrating and regrettable hazard these days and certainly China is the worst offender. TWSBI considers Moonman and others to be selling copies of some of their models. Basically, TWSBI has told retailers if they sell Moonman and related pens, they can no longer sell TWSBIs. If TWSBI had a patent on their piston-filler mechanism, I would support enforcing it, but they don’t. If they haven’t filed for one, why not?

Business is business you say? Well, I don’t have to give TWSBI my business or anyone else for that matter. Make a good product and offer it at a fair, dollar-for-value price, and people will come. That’s the best way to beat the competition.

Delike New Moon 2 with a fine fude nib.

h1

Noodler’s And The Pen Community

05/12/2022

A few folks have gotten their knickers in a twist over pen and ink names. As a result, Noodler’s has changed the names of a number of products. Other manufacturers have given inks new names over the years ostensibly for marketing reasons though apparently the underlying formulas remained unchanged. To be accurate at representation, my policy has been to use the name on the bottle and that will continue. If I ever restock a bottle with a new name, I will make the switch but who uses up Noodler’s ink? Those bottles are huge!

For reference:

Previous Name


Noodler’s Ink

New Name

19010 Kiowa Pecan Pecan
19022 Apache Sunset Southwest Sunset
19028 Ottoman Rose Rose in the Louvre
19029 Navajo Turquoise Mesa Turquoise
19034 Tiananmen Discontinued
19035 Ottoman Azure Azure
19036 Shah’s Rose Pearl Diver Coral
19066 Bernanke Black Brevity Black
19067 Bernanke Blue Brevity Blue
19069 Rome Burning Rome (one antique coin)
19070 Q-E’ternity ($&¢) Brevity Blue-Black
19074 Park Red Discontinued
19085 House Divided Discontinued
19103 Anti-Fascist Blue (X-Feather Blue) X-Feather Blue
19104 Noodler’s 1984 Ink Discontinued
19105 Censor Red Brevity Red
19810 Nikita 4.5 oz w/Free Pen TBD
19814 Dragons Napalm 4.5 oz Free Pen Dragon’s Fire
Noodler’s Fountain Pens
14045 Apache Tortoise Konrad Flex Mesa Tortoise
15045 Apache Tortoise Ahab Mesa Tortoise
15048 Cherokee Pearl Ahab Oklahoma
15049 Comanche Ahab Brazos River
15051 Black Crow Ahab Raven
15054 Huron Ahab Lake Champlain
15055 Iroquois Ahab Lake Erie
15060 Navajo Turquoise Ahab Mesa Turquoise
15063 Pima Tortoise Ahab Canyon Tortoise
15066 Zuni Ahab Wilderness twilight
Standard Flex Nibs
17066 Zuni Std Flex Wilderness Twilight
h1

Matchy-Matchy In Pink

05/11/2022

Last week I ordered a replacement for a favorite ink along with a pen for a comparison review from Jet Pens. It turns out they are perfectly suited for each other in a matchy-matchy way. Sometimes you just get lucky.

h1

What Happened to Inkophile’s Links Posts?

03/09/2022

Putting together a links post is entertaining but time consuming. Recently, product reviews and musings about using pens, ink, and paper have reemerged as the best use of my time and effort though I can still spend a month or more writing a single review. If there is anything you would like to see, do let me know.

For those who love to click links and read the latest about pens and such, there are a number of blogs that will feed the need. Two that I recommend are The Well-Appointed Desk and Fountain Pen Quest. Once I catch up on reviews and other subjects, my links posts will return.

h1

Be Bold And Decorate Your Journal Pages

03/03/2022

From time to time, the subject of decorating journal pages with washi tape, stamps and watercolor doodles has come up. There are tons of watercolor sets from which to choose, but frankly many come with weak colors and cheap brushes. You deserve better. So after much research, a few sets have emerged that are better than the inexpensive sets that are marketed for children. The cost is a little higher, but worth the investment.

In the world of watercolor, there are three tools: paper, brushes and paint. For those who have a serious interest in learning to use watercolors, professional level tools are the way to go even as a beginner. For those who only have interest in decorating journal pages, correspondence, and making small paintings that will never get hung, saturated colors and decent brushes will do. They will also cost less than professional level products.

Mixing colors to create new ones is a fascinating aspect of painting, but especially in the beginning, it is easier to use paint straight. To do that, a wide selection of colors is needed. After significant research, a few sets emerged as worthy of mention though brands like Daniel Smith, Winsor and Newton, Schmincke, Sennelier, QoR, Mission Gold, DaVinci, and M. Graham always deliver high quality. Just like ink, the characteristics are different, but the paint is consistently excellent.

There are tons of cheap, student paint sets that I would not recommend. However, I discovered two sets that cost $20-25 and have enough color variety to keep anyone happy for quite some time. There is a video for an Artistro kit that applies to any set so start there. The company is a small, family owned enterprise that has put together an aesthetic kit containing all of the basic tools.

MeiLiang is the second set that offers good quality at the price point. It is the student grade set from Paul Rubens, a watercolor supplier that some artists recommend. I have no experience with the company, but there have been lots of good reviews. This kit only comes with a water brush so you might want to purchase a synthetic brush for more versatility.

Note that quality brushes can be purchased for less than $20 and I do recommend buying the best that you can manage even if it is only one brush. Especially for doodling in a journal, a single brush is all that is needed. More would be great, but one will do. A size #8 is the most commonly recommended, but a #6 will work well in a typical book-sized journal. A #2 is tiny and will produce thin lines and fine details.

Go for a short handle. Brushes come in a wide variety of synthetic and several natural hair bristles. Synthetics have improved so much in the last decade that recommending them is easy. Some are quite soft, but a firmer brush is a little easier to control. Be gentle with the tip of the brush and it will last a long time. Angle the brush to the side rather than loading paint from the tip and rinse well in lukewarm water before storing. Place a brush on its side to dry to prevent water seeping under the metal and loosening the glue that holds the bristles in place. Once dry a brush can be stored at any angle. Put a drop of water on each pan of paint or lightly spray with water to soften and to encourage the most saturated color. Well cared for brushes can last decades. Abused ones may only last months.

A travel brushs come with a cap that protects the bristles. It costs a little more, but can be just the thing for someone who likes to go out and about with a journal. This type of brush is by no means necessary but it is an option to consider.

Just as there is fountain pen friendly paper, there is paper that will work well for doodling with watercolors. Buckling is the biggest problem and can be minimized by limiting the amount of water on the brush. Tapping or holding the side of the bristles against a piece of scrap paper or a paper towel will remove some of the fluid. In my experience, paper that works well with ink will often work fine with small amounts of watercolor.

Below are some recommendations for watercolor sets and synthetic brushes with links to Amazon. The first two watercolor sets are hard to find elsewhere, but for journaling they have all the paint you will need. The recommended brushes might be available at your local art store. Just don’t buy into the idea that you have to “mix your own colors” rule. It isn’t a rule and isn’t necessary unless you are serious about becoming a watercolorist. Otherwise, just grab some paint, a brush, a cup of water, and have fun in your journal.

Being creative is a great defense against the turmoil of the outside world and unless you flash your journal for all to see, this activity can be just between us. And I promise to keep your secret.

Watercolor Sets

  1. Artistro
  2. MeiLiang
  3. Sennelier
  4. Paul Rubens
  5. White Nights

Brushes

  1. Princeton Aqua Elite, Series 4850, Synthetic Kolinsky Watercolor Paint Brush,Travel Round, 8
  2. Princeton Artist Brush, Neptune Series 4750, Synthetic Squirrel Watercolor Paint Brush, Travel Round, Size 6
  3. Princeton Aqua Elite, Series 4850, Synthetic Kolinsky Watercolor Paint Brush,Round, 6
  4. Princeton Aqua Elite, Series 4850, Synthetic Kolinsky Watercolor Paint Brush,Round, 8
  5. Princeton Artist Brush, Neptune Series 4750, Synthetic Squirrel Watercolor Paint Brush, Round, Size 8
  6. Princeton Artist Brush, Neptune Series 4750, Synthetic Squirrel Watercolor Paint Brush, Round, Size 6
  7. Princeton Artist Brush, Neptune Series 4750, Synthetic Squirrel Watercolor Paint Brush, Round, Size 2

Lastly, I have watercolor sets from Schmincke, Rembrandt, and White Nights to sell. Send an email to inkophile@gmail.com if you are interested.

Washi tape

h1

A New Notebook For Fountain Pens From Lollipro

02/21/2022

The Lollipro notebook is a relative newcomer, first appearing less than a year ago at Amazon. It is nicely put together and comes with 120gsm fountain pen-friendly paper. What sold me on ordering the Lollipro was the way they described how well the paper works with fountain pen ink. While it wasn’t a sure thing, neither was it a gamble since the binder would work with another A6 brand of paper that I already knew was good with fountain pens.

This A6 notebook lays flat, fits easily in my handbag and comfortably in my hand thus meeting my basic form requirements. The spine is a bit stiff, not supple, and will need a little breaking-in. Quite serviceable as is but it does not flop open like a cover made with cloth. The stitching is even and consistent in its distance from the edge. Like every other binder with stitching I have owned, a couple of stitches are imperfect. Not enough to be of concern, but in fairness, worthy of mention.

The cover is comfortable to the touch and has a light suede texture. The six-ring, loose-leaf design is convenient for someone like me who is constantly reorganizing notes. The binder mechanism is attached with two screws and can be removed should the need arise.

Despite the dullness of the image, the paper is ivory with gray lines spaced 7mm apart. The surface is smooth and velvety making it suitable for any nib. No feathering, no bleeding, no ghosting with fountain pen ink. My 0.5 HB mechanical pencil is another satisfactory mate for the paper and the Tombow MONOgraph in coral pink is a good color match.

The front cover has an outside pocket for a slim phone or papers. The Lollipro is stiff enough to use on my lap or on an uneven surface which makes it more versatile than a floppy A5 binder I have from another seller. I am looking forward to the spine becoming more flexible and sufficient use should improve that over time. It comes in transparent and bright orange editions in addition to my rose pink lined in gray.

There are several configurations. The bundle I purchased includes three packets of paper and two plastic, backing sheets like pencil boards, that will make a firm surface whether writing on the front or the back of a sheet of paper. They are also useful for post-its and washi tape, both of which peel off easily from the plastic surface. Think of them as mini bulletin boards.

The heart on a string could be used as a bookmark or as a simple decoration. It is easily detached and I am putting it aside for now.

In the paper world, there are two A6 sizes: personal (6.75 x 3.75″) that fits the small version of the Filofax system and the standard or European size (5.83 x. 4.14″) that is 1/2 the size of A5. I cut paper in those sizes as a test and found the personal size like the Lollipro better suited to my list-making penchant.

If you don’t usually buy from Amazon, note that it is where I found the Lollipro product line. It is a small company trying to make a go of it and the binders are good value for money. Currently at around $10 for the binder alone, I haven’t seen anything better or even close for that matter.

J. Herbin Rouille d’Ancre looks like a good mate for the Lollipro rose pink cover. The only question now is which pen to use. A transparent barrel might be just the thing like the Platinum Century Nice. Sounds like eye candy for a fountain pen lover.

Please view the images here for better color rendition.

%d bloggers like this: