Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Ink Shot Review: J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect

A huge thank you to Bureau Direct for sending me a sample of this delectable ink to review! Honestly. I need a bottle.
Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (5)
Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (6)
Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (8)
Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (13)
Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (14)
ABOUT

Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (10)
Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (11)
Color: Green
Bottle:50 ml
Price: £14.95
Where to buy: Bureau Direct
Bureau Direct
Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (1)
Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (2)
Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (3)
Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (4)
Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (12)
PROS
  • Stunning ink! A rich, vibrant emerald green base, with a beautiful sheen, and gold particles. 
  • Looks spectacular in wet and broad nibs. 
  • Works pretty well with dip nibs.
Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (15)
Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (7)
CONS
  • Hard to clean - those particles require some care.
  • Silly narrow mouth on bottle.
  • Requires the right combination of nib and paper to shine, but it's worth it. 
OVERALL

This is an ink that may not be suitable for all pens - I prefer to use inks with particles in pens I can take apart to clean thoroughly. I haven't had clogging issues, but I also am careful to clean the pens I use it in thoroughly. I think this is so gorgeous, that it's worth the added maintenance and care. Look at this stuff! The ink also shines in a wet nib, or a broad nib, and on coated paper.
Ink Shot Review J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor @BureauDirect (9)

I received this sample free of charge for the purposes of this review. I was not compensated monetarily for my review. Everything you've read here is my own opinion. No affiliate links.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Review: Paper Republic Le Porte Crayon Leather Pen Holder

Review Paper Republic Le Porte Crayon Leather Pen Holder (9)
ABOUT

Open: 19 x 19 cm
Rolled up: 19 x 5 cm
Color: Cognac
Holds 4 - 8 pens/pencils
Price: €60.00
Where to buy: Paper Republic
Paper Republic
APPEARANCE

This wrap appealed to me as soon as I saw it on the website of Paper Republic, because the color of the leather is so rich and warm. The Porte Crayon has a square shape with pointed corners. The edges and pockets are stitched with a medium thickness, light brown waxed linen thread. There is a t hick, raised knob with a brown cord attached to it, for tying your wrap shut. There is a brass-colored rivet securing it in place on the other side - it looks seamless and sits tightly in the leather.
Review Paper Republic Le Porte Crayon Leather Pen Holder (5)
The inside has a short flap on the top, to cover the tops of your pens/pencils, but also to prevent them from falling out. Across the bottom, there are four pockets. I think the spacing should be smaller between the pockets and the flaps. As it is set up, pens and pencils fit into the pocket, but a fair amount of the body of each is exposed.
Review Paper Republic Le Porte Crayon Leather Pen Holder (8)
The color of this leather looks delicious. It's a rich, warm, yellow-brown. In addition, mine has been personalized with one of my favorite quotes. The quote is a little faded, which I think adds to its character.
Review Paper Republic Le Porte Crayon Leather Pen Holder (10)
As the Porte Crayon is rolled and folded, the leather acquires a fantastic pull-up effect - changing color where it is bent. As it flattens out again, the color returns to its original state (or very close to it). The inside of the wrap is soft, smooth, and flat leather. The finish matches the outside well, in color.

I think it's a really nice looking leather wrap.

PERFORMANCE & FEEL

My new Porte Crayon was firm and stiff. It needed to be broken in, in order to be rolled up easily, and to accommodate pens in the pockets. I really enjoyed the rather sensual experience of breaking it in. I did so by folding and rolling it while it was empty. It felt like breaking in a new baseball mitt! Breaking in your own leather item makes it really feel like it belongs to you and you alone.
Review Paper Republic Le Porte Crayon Leather Pen Holder (4)
I love rolling the wrap up and tying the cord around it - sometimes messy, sometimes tidy. Since the leather is stiff, the wrap does not roll up very tightly. At least, not yet. From when I first started breaking it in, I have been able to roll it more and more tightly.
Review Paper Republic Le Porte Crayon Leather Pen Holder (7)
The pockets, although I find them low (too low for the average pen clip to reach it), they are very snug. I have stuffed in a pen as thick as the Delta Dolcevita Oversize fountain pen into a pocket, and it fit. Larger pens certainly stretch the leather out a little, so consider what you want to carry. If you stretch a pocket out, a thinner pen won't be held as tightly afterwards, of course.
Review Paper Republic Le Porte Crayon Leather Pen Holder (6)
For the average-size pen/pencil, the pocket holds about a third of the utensil. The top flap covers either the top bit of the pen/pencil, or doesn't reach it if it's a short pen/pencil. The flap stops any pen covered by it from falling out, once it is rolled up.
Review Paper Republic Le Porte Crayon Leather Pen Holder (11)
The stitching is tight and clean - no stitches have broken or pulled in my use of my case. I expect it to hold. The ends are burned closed where they are double-stitched, and those have remained snug as well.

PROS
  • Beautiful color.
  • Portable, convenient size - either open, or rolled up. 
  • Can be personalized with your initials (no additional cost).
  • Fun and personal to break it in to your heart's content - whether a little or a lot. 
  • Snug pockets for smaller pens, but can stretch to hold pretty beefy pens (but this will make the roll thicker when rolled up)
  • Pairs really well with the Grand Voyageur in cognac. 
  • Perfect for dip nib holders (of normal length, not the magic wand kinds).
  • Definitely gets even better with use - as all good leather goods do. 
Review Paper Republic Le Porte Crayon Leather Pen Holder (1)
CONS  
  • Low pockets and high flaps.
    • Shorter pens and pencils are not covered by the flap and can move around once the Porte Crayon is rolled up. 
    • Full-sized/new pencils don't fit. 
  • Rivet for the closure knob is flush with the leather but I am careful not to put a fountain pen in that pocket so as to not scratch the body.
  • Not supple and soft - for those who prefer wraps like that.
  • Expensive, but I think it has a lot of nice features and is really nice overall.
OVERALL 


I'm not an artist, a traveler, or a (real) writer. The Porte Crayon is pretty, smells wonderful (as proper leather goods should), and it feels really nice in hand, either open or rolled up. I prefer using this for my machined pens, or for me dip nib holders. It's a nice way to keep four dip nib holders (or more, but in my case, I use four) together - a flourishing holder, an oblique, and two straight holders.

Review Paper Republic Le Porte Crayon Leather Pen Holder (2)
Review Paper Republic Le Porte Crayon Leather Pen Holder (3)
I love that it can be customized with your initials, and I'm totally crazy about mine because it has a Tolkien quote on it. I hope that system rolls out soon because it's fantastic. I really like this and I think, although it's expensive, I have found several uses for it that make me happy. It's also just a beautiful leather case.


I received this item free of charge for the purposes of this review. I was not compensated monetarily for my review. Everything you've read here is my own opinion. 

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Review: Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect

Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (13)
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (11)
ABOUT

Size: A5+ 165 x 220 mm
Paper Weight: 120 gsm
FSC Paper (Swedish Munken)
Made in Germany
Color: White
Ruling: Dot Grid
Sheet Count: 96
Price: £26.00
Where to buy: Bureau Direct
Bureau Direct
APPEARANCE

This is a solid, pretty notebook that I think looks rather impressive. The cover is white bonded leather, with rounded corners. The edges of the paper are visible - they are a baby blue that match the print on the cover 'You Make Me Glow'. The spine is rounded, as are the pages inside.
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (16)
The paper is white, with a dot grid ruling in grey. It is a small, cute grid ruling that looks pretty great on each blank page. It is a simple looking notebook, but the print on the front is the most fun! More on that soon...
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (10)
PERFORMANCE & FEEL

The notebook feels solid and robust. It is heavy, and I like how substantial it feels in hand. The cover is velvety smooth, and a little rough over the print. The covers are semi-flexible and flush with the pages inside. The paper is quite smooth to the touch, but it is not coated. Note: that is 120 gsm paper, uncoated.

The notebook opens easily and lies flat because of the design of the binding. I love this design. It's very convenient, especially because of how thick the notebook is. It's much easier to actually write on all sides, and on all parts of the page when the entire notebook can open up completely and lie flat on its own.
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (15)
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (14)
The paper performed very well with pencils, ballpoints, roller balls, and gel pens. Brush pens and markers did well, too. Nothing feathered, and only the marker really bled through. There was a little bit of show through with the brush pen filled with fountain pen ink, but no bleed through.
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (17)
I actually really enjoyed using pencils and brush pens in this notebook. I don't know why it was so satisfying, but those are some of my utensils of choice.

Although the paper is heavy, it is uncoated. I found it was not entirely fountain pen friendly. I experienced feathering even with extra-fine nibs. Feathering was not proportional to nib size though. I also experienced a lot of show through and bleed through with wetter nibs. The paper did not tolerate fountain pens all that well, but it felt really nice to write on, being so smooth. I also enjoyed that, because it was uncoated, my nibs that were prone to hard starts or skips did not end up doing so.
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (18)
Although particles in inks were visible on the paper, ink sheens and shading were really toned down. Really wet nibs still offered shading, but of course, that also  meant it was more likely to feather and it definitely would show through/bleed through. Drying times were pretty fast across the board, with a variety of nibs and inks.
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (6)
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (4)
Don't be totally disheartened. I successfully used the back of a flex nib to mimic a folded nib, and that worked really well. There was no feathering or bleed through, and the sheen on the ink showed up well. It was also a lot of fun and the dot grid was a good guide for practice. I also used brush pens and various inks successfully (such as Sailor Jentle Yama-Dori). Try out different nibs and inks - you may find something that works for you as I did.
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (1)
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (2)
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (7)
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (8)
Now, on to the cover! The print actually glows in the dark. It needs to be charged before use and it fades pretty quickly. It's a novelty, but it's fun. I love glowing things, so it was hard to ignore this. Good for a dream journal? Nighttime journal? Beside-the-bed journal?
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (12)
PROS
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (5)
CONS  
Review Nuuna Glow In The Dark Graphic Notebook @BureauDirect (3)
OVERALL 

If you only use fountain pens, I would suggest you don't invest in this notebook because you might be disappointed. If you are a mixed user, you'll probably really appreciate it. It's a solid notebook. I like having a variety of notebooks so I don't get bored with the same thing and this one ranks up there - pretty unique, smooth, nice paper, and it glows. Spice things up a bit.

I received this item free of charge for the purposes of this review. I was not compensated monetarily for my review. Everything you've read here is my own opinion. 

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