Posts Tagged ‘Luxury Brands USA’


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.



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.


Review: Platinum #3776 Yamanaka Fountain Pen


Carol at Luxury Brands sent a Platinum #3776 Century Yamanaka for review several months ago and it has been a joy in every respect. But then I am a sucker for a clear demonstrator with silver furnishings and a nib that makes writing a pleasure.

The Yamanaka was designed to “reflect the image of a ripple of the brilliant” Lake Yamanaka near Mount Fuji. It’s a beautiful medium sized, light-weight pen, well balanced and comfortable in the hand. The textured effect reminds me of rain on a window pane and makes this pen very stable in the hand. No slipping whatsoever. Posting makes it slightly less well balanced in my smallish hand. For most users that won’t be an issue.

Loaded with Platinum Mixable Silky Purple, this is one of the smoothest nibs I have ever used. With practice, the soft medium nib will produce a very fine line to a bold 0.8 line. Typical of modern soft nibs, a little effort is necessary to achieve that range. However, it is good enough to create flourishes and a unique signature. When flex writing isn’t needed, the nib offers a hint of feedback and yet a nice grip of the paper. That makes it excellent as a daily writer.

The pen is a relatively wet writer so the line is just a little wider than a typical Japanese nib though not so wide as a Western nib. Throttle back just a tad and the line can be better controlled. Even an extra fine line is possible. Loaded with Platinum Carbon Black, it would make a useful pen for drawing expressive lines whether doodles or something more artistic.

Some users claim that matching ink and pen brand can produce ideal results. Filling the Yamanaka with Platinum ink might have made a believer out of me. All I can say is WOW! Match made in heaven and my little sample bottle of Silky Purple won’t last long. In addition, the ink is gorgeous in the transparent barrel though any colorful ink will look jewel-like.

Like other Century pens, this one can rest uncapped for several minutes without the nib running dry. Brand or color may contribute to how long ink will remain fluid. If you tend to pause while considering what to write next, this could make writing a much more enjoyable and relaxed experience. If you are a casual user, the Slip & Seal cap keeps ink from drying out even when stored for extended periods of time. No burps or hard starts either.

While I like the soft medium nib, it won’t suit everyone. My experience with a Platinum medium nib has been no less satisfying and I think it’s a size many writers could enjoy. It is a little less free-flowing so the line is a bit more narrow. Both pens make excellent daily writers.

Such perfect timing. The Yamanaka review is ready to post and the pen is in need of a refill. The breeze is gently tapping the shutters against my window and the lighting at my desk is as good as it gets. Time to close my laptop and put the pen to best use writing a long overdue letter. Life is good!


Do You Favor Any Of These Inks?


Introduced mostly through mutual friends, these are the inks that have captured my fancy this year:

  • Akkerman #18 Garuda Road
  • Akkerman #24 Zuiderpark Blauw-Groen
  • Akkerman #28 Hofkwartier Groen
  • Akkerman #26 Groenmarkt Smaragd
  • De Atramentis Cola Ink
  • Diamine Marine
  • Diamine Merlot
  • Diamine Tyrian Purple
  • Diamine Wild Strawberry
  • J. Herbin Rouge Caroubier
  • Noodler’s Park Red
  • Platinum Mixable Ink Aqua Blue
  • Platinum Mixable Ink Silky Purple
  • Platinum Pigment Rose
  • Sailor Miruai
  • Sailor Souten
  • Stipula Calamo Saffron
  • Super 5 Dublin

Two old favorites reemerged as good mates for a variety of pens.

  • Noodler’s Purple Martin
  • Stipula Calamo Verde Muschiato

Are any of these inks in your rotation? Which inks in your collection have emerged as special this year?

A big thank you to the folks who contributed to my wealth of new inks:


Where Did It Go?


Has half the year gone by already? Sheesh. Where did the days go? At least some if them went into research and testing more inks than I can count. A few of those results have been posted, but there are more to come.

Most recently I experimented with Platinum Pigment Inks from Luxury Brands USA and the results have been eye-opening. Lisa Vanness assured me the line is safe for my pens so I loaded Blue and Rose Red into a couple of Platinum pens. Happily, the inks turned out to be undaunted by even the Moleskine challenge. The only drawback so far is that the Blue in a wet nib can be slow to dry on some brands of paper though the Rose Red less so. Pen-ink-paper matching applies.

An amber Conklin Duragraph 1.1 Stub joined the herd a couple of months ago. It won’t get a separate review since the cracked ice model got its due in January. Suffice to say it’s a smooth, wet writer with a hint of feedback. It isn’t for everyone, but will suit those of us who enjoy a wide nib with tons of flow. Oh, yeah!

Early in the year and after reading many posts and watching dozens of videos about the best planners and how to utilize them, I concluded that using plain grid paper would be something different and interesting for 2015. So I began collecting a few products in the pursuit of paper bliss. Thanks to Jet Pens, paper-oh, and Exaclair, things got off to a good start. But then friends donated a few more and notebooks are still arriving. So the comprehensive review has gone on the back burner until all of the paper arrives. The test pens have been loaded for months and keeping fifteen of them happy has been quite the challenge. A few have complained which I find quite cheeky. That got sorted with the miscreants by a thorough cleaning and a return to the pen drawer. Hrumph!

One of these days, when the lighting conditions are just right, there are at least eight pages of ink tests on Moleskine paper that will get photographed. Not sure any text will be needed for the post since the results will speak for themselves.

Old notebook covers have been pressed into service with new paper notebooks that are ink friendly. That made me rethink tossing even the most shabby ones. With the right paper, re-purposing is easy. This is one virtue that is a bargain.

Over the next few months, the plan is to mix things up with ink and grid journal reviews along with other subjects pen-related. However, there might be a sprinkling of notes about my rescue dog, Macy, should she sit still long enough for a photo. If you want more of one than the other, do let me know and I will try to oblige.

Note that Rose Red leans more orange than the image. Some colors just do not want to be photographed correctly and this red is one of them.




Platinum #3776 Music Nib With Colorful Inks


The Platinum music nib remains my favorite pen after more than two years of use. This sample of ten colorful inks shows how well the nib works with whatever I toss in it even on cheap paper.


A Drop Of Platinum Mixable Ink


Late last night an errant drop of Aqua Blue Platinum Mixable Ink grew tentacles with the help of a Platinum Century Chartres Blue pen. Even the back of the abused envelope was amused. A laugh at bedtime is a good thing.


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