Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Montblanc Elixir Calligraphy Inks - Black & Yellow Gold

Montblanc is always launching new stuff - pens, notebooks, accessories, inks, all that stuff. They've really been pumping out the inks lately and it's hard to keep up. One of the coolest things they've done as of late, in my humble opinion, is the Calligraphy line up. I've done a video of the Meisterstück 149 Calligraphy Flex pen before and I show the inks but at the time, the focus was really on the pens.
To complement the Meisterstück Calligraphy Collection, two permanent inks, inspired by the old India ink, one of the oldest and most durable pigments, have been created. Permanent ink contains more solids than other inks, which build up inside the fountain pen over time. The water in the ink, which causes it to flow, evaporates, leaving behind soot and sediment that line the capillary grooves of the ink regulator and the fine capillaries of the piston filling mechanism. For this reason, it is important to clean the fountain pen with lukewarm water after every use of permanent ink to keep it in perfect condition. - Montblanc
Both inks have an awesome matte finish. The black is a really solid black color for those that love a pure black for their writing. Shading is virtually non existent and it offers some solid coverage. The yellow gold is a very pretty color, showing some shading and still holding that matte effect. Both inks have the kind of flow you would expect of a "sootier" ink - they're a little slower to flow so I was not expecting either ink to gush from my pens. I ended up putting it in a higher end piston-filler (see below - the actual Montblanc Calligraphy flex pen!) and it was not as difficult to clean out as I expected. I was just sure to use the pen daily and not let the ink dry out. As soon as it ran dry, I flushed it out - no leaving it in that to-clean pile for days. Or weeks. I wasn't worried about putting it in pens I could disassemble to clean. Sometimes the simple systems are best! Yay eyedroppers!

I like the appearance of the boxes and bottles. Super clean and classy. Stack and store easily in drawers and on shelves. They're not flashy. The bottles are easy to fill from because they have nice open mouths and deep bodies.

They are pricy as heck. You're looking at around $60USD per bottle. They are certainly unusual and unique, and offer a completely different writing experience and effect. They do take some extra care and attention. I appreciate having the opportunity to give them a shot - thank you to Appelboom for providing these bottles to me. You can browse the Montblanc inks at Appelboom here!

Friday, April 3, 2020

Oddly Satisfying Handwriting Sailor King Eagle Fountain Pen

Sometimes it's just fun to use your fun nibs for, well, fun! The goodies I use are listed below. Some of them are hard to find, in case you're looking. Hope it tickles your fancy!

Fountain Pen: Classic Pens LB5
Nib: Sailor King Eagle
Inks: Caran d'Ache Caribbean Sea, Robert Oster Green Olive Ink, Robert Oster Peppermint

Music: BenSound

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Vinta Inks Blue Floss Perya Stole My Heart.

Vinta Inks are obsessively designed and meticulously mixed. Our inks are meant for fountain pen or calligraphy use. We promise that we use the finest ingredients to make the best ink that we can.
Vinta Inks are made in the Philippines and they have a pretty cool initiative that I didn't even know about until I started reading up more about them.
At Vinta, we believe that education is one of the most important paths towards poverty alleviation. That is why for every bottle of ink you purchase, we will donate P25.00 to Teach for the Philippines, Inc. in their goal to provide access to quality education for all Filipino children. Help us make the world a more colorful place, one bottle at a time. 
That's pretty cool. I always like supporting companies that are trying to do something for someone else. It's just nice to see they have a bigger picture in mind. Of course, I picked these colors long before I knew about their initiative. These are the four colors I went with, and I am telling you, it was hard to pick just four: Deep water Blue Lucia, Mermaid Green Sirena, Blue Floss Perya, and Violet Maskara. I did not know the background behind the names but I love the names and it's really interesting to learn about the Philippines and the inspirations. They are whimsical and fun, and educational! The boxes are adorable and classy and the round amber bottles are simple and easy to fill from.

  • Deepwater Blue - Lucia - this is a gorgeous medium blue with greenish undertones. It shades to a lighter blue but doesn't get too dark. It definitely does not feel like "just another blue" to me. 
Dyesebel is one of the most important Filipino comic book characters in Philippine history. It was originally created by the Filipino illustrator Mars Ravelo. Lucia is the name of Dyesebel's mother. She was obsessed with collecting and gazing at artistic depictions of mermaids while she was pregnant, so the baby (Dyesebel) was born with what looked like a fishtail instead of legs.  Dyesebel's first appearance in the comics was in 1952.
  • Mermaid Green - Sirena - what a mystical green! I love how the color changes as it shades - it's a very blueish mint green and there's definitely some grey in there. I don't see a whole lot of pink showing up but wow, is it ever pretty!
Sirena is an homage to Mars Ravelo's famous Filipino comics Dyesebel about a mermaid. It is one of the most popular local comics that was serialized in 1952. This beautiful mint green has undertones of grey and pink.
  • Blue Floss - Perya - You know how I feel about things named after food, right? Especially cotton candy, which is one of my favorite things. Sweet as heck, but I like how it looks and the color mixture is captivating, and the texture is soft and perfect. This is my favorite of the bunch. I love the yellow/peach and blue. I can see the cotton candy. I can taste the cotton candy.
One of the most beautiful parks in Manila is Luneta Park built in 1820. It is now known as Rizal Park, named after the national hero of the Philippines, Jose Rizal. Very near the pier, many children and adults enjoy blue cotton candy as they stroll along the park. 

  • Violet - Maskara - What a pretty violet! You can see the blue in the shading and boy does it ever shade! It ranges from a light lavender to a violet-blue, and it matches the other three colors in its whimsicality. 
The maskara festival was conceived in part due to the sugarcane crisis in Negros. 1890 was the year the Spaniards split Negros region into two: Negros Occidental and Negros Oriental. These regional divisions remain today. 

They're beautiful in clear pens because they're not super saturated. Inks that shade well usually look fabulous in a clear pen, so obviously these have to go in clear pens. I am discovering I don't have enough clear pens for all my shady inks.

I picked up my selection from Vanness Pens quite some time ago - in fact, I think it was at the DC Pen show in 2019?? WOW. Time has flown, how disturbing. Here's their current selection! No commission, I'm just happy to refer you to them. You can follow Vinta Inks on Facebook & Twitter - @inksbyvinta.

Close up swab of that Blue Floss Perya!

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