Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Conklin Stylograph Fountain Pen - Review

Anyone who truly knows me, understands my love for plaid or vintage looking things. This pen fits the bill. Now, as I got a screaming deal on this pen (considering for what it sells for)...Well, let's just get to the review!

Brand: Conklin
Model: Stylograph Mosiac
Nib Size: Medium
Price: $145 at Conklin  or around $116 at other retailers.
Other info:Takes a converter (Comes with one with most retailers) 
Also takes cartridges.
Made out of resin and nicely polished chrome trim.
The clip is spring loaded; so easy to get on and off.

What makes this pen a pleasure to use is it's comfort. The nib is a flexible Cushion point steel nib. This feature only adds to the pleasure of this writing instrument. The coating on the fountain pen is smooth and is somewhat shimmery too. I suppose that just adds to the appeal  as well!

My writing experience with this pen has been pleasurable thus far. I always recommend flushing every new pen you receive BEFORE inking it up. This is said to help reduce the likelihood of problems arising when first writing with it. Plus it is just good "house-keeping" for your pens. (I use distilled water and a bulb syringe to flush my pens out most of the time).

Well, this pen is smooth! 99.8% buttery smooth. There may be just the ever so slightest hint of feedback.. You can just barely tell that the pen is touching the paper. So for people like me, perfect pen! It has a tad bit more feedback on cheap copy/printer paper (and thus also writes a more fine line on that kind of paper as well too). So depending on the paper you use, depends on the line width you may get.

Very nicely polished chrome fittings

Conklin logo. I love the font...

From Left to Right - Lamy Studio, Lamy Al-Star, Conklin Stylograph, Pilot Prera

The above photo gives you a decent idea of the size of the pen. Now, all these pens fit nicely in my hands while writing. However, I have average/medium hands. For the wieght of this pen, I would say that it is similar to the Lamy Studio (The gray/silver on all the way to the left). The stylograph is almost darn near the same in length/size to the Lamy Studio as well.

I would not say that I write with the pen capped. It seems at that point to feel too top heavy. So, thus, I keep the cap in  a separate safe place while writing.

So in my honest opinion, this pen is worth the money. It performs beautifully! And is in a decent price range for what you get - however I do suggest shopping around at other places. You may just find a better deal at an online auction site or somewhere else. Until then, my friends and fellow writers, have a great rest of your 2014 year and see you in the New Year 2015!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Nemosine Singularity - Review

Don't mind the specks of stuff by the nib...we had been making Christmas cookies earlier.... hehehe

Brand: Nemosine
Model: Singularity
Color:  Ivory
Nib Size: 0.8mm stub
Other Info:  Takes a cartridge or converter. 
Material is said to be Resin. Chrome trim. Stainless steel
nib that is made in Germany.

This pen was actually quiet the pleasure to write with. Besides the one main issue I had with ink leaking at the top of the cap (See pics below), it performed fairly well. It did skip from time to time, however it was pretty rare that it did so. This pen was ink'd up with "Diamine Monaco Red" .  The 0.8mm stub nib was just perfect in that I could use it for calligraphy AND even writing in my journal. And there is nothing better than a dual purpose pen! I would not say that the nib is buttery smooth, however it writes nicely; with just a slight bit of feedback. The grip section feels great. Even after writing for a while, it doesn't get slippery or anything. The nib is a German made nib (which I fancy). Overall, I would say that you get a pretty decent pen for a reasonable price.

  • Smooth writer. 
  • Fairly light-weight
  • Reasonable price

  • Leakage at the cap
  • Twist cap

As you can see, there is some leakage on the cap

So, in regards to the cap leaking. I have no clue  why it is doing this, and it does not do it all the time. When I saw this, I opened up the pen and saw a small bit of ink pooled up in the cap. It is not like it leaked droplets from the cap. This could present a problem if it travels regularly. My assumption is that the ink became pooled in the cap due to frequent and possibly rough movement. My daily usage pens are kept in a 12 pen leather case. That case gets frequent abuse in my purse, and is set in many different directions. I treat it almost like a wallet...but for my pens instead of debit cards, my ID and such. If it makes it any better, this was not the only pen in that case to have some ink in the cap or excessive ink on the nib.

The cap, which is neatly engraved "Nemosine" on the chrome

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Christmas cards, letters, and surprises!

Tis the season for Christmas cards and letter writing galore! Christmas time seems to bring about the letter writers and the pretty little cards that talk about the holidays and wishing happiness and joy to family and friends. Christmas, this year, came up on me a bit fast. I was unable to get the family pictures done in time to send out cards to family and friends, however maybe I can send them out as a "Happy New Year" thing. So thus I am left with plain ordinary cards that are enhanced with a few words from our family, some calligraphy (which I am practicing on and very new to), and a scripture from the Bible that is a favorite of mine.

Hot Cocoa, a Christmas card,and my newest addition ... A Conklin Duragraph in Amber!

It has been a very busy Christmas season for our family/ With the surprise addition of twin girls to our family....

"Pippy" is the black and white one with black legs. "Keiko" is the almost completely back one.

... that is, twin doelings! One of our favorite female goats (Chloe is her name) had twin girls in early December! And as you can see, they are quiet the active, acrobatic, energetic little girls. We are looking forward to hopefully adding them to our breeding program in the future years to come. If not, they will make great pets!

So, where was I... Yes, Christmas cards. I have enjoyed playing around with the calligraphy. Especially since becoming a subscriber to UPPERCASE magazine. It is somewhat expensive for a magazine, but as you only pay that price once ever three months, it is not really that bad. Plus you are supporting "local" business. The artwork and articles are informative, intriguing and beautiful. I look forward to subscribing to future editions and I encourage you to give it a try, even if it is just one magazine. Try it.

Indeed it is time to start whipping out the camera and doing some more reviews! Some new items have arrived and I would love to share them with you. Until then, have a MERRY CHRISTMAS and HAPPY NEW YEAR everyone!!!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Winter Horse Photography & Updates

Well, I figured that I would share some photography while I wait for some new "surprises" to arrive in the mail. I was expecting them Thursday (tomorrow) however it appears via the USPS website that they will not arrive until Friday! Bummer. So be on the look out for some pen and possibly more ink reviews in the near future.

This is my good friend's mare. She is a beautiful roan Quarter Horse. Both of her horses are absolutely stunning. My photography is not that great with Horses and animals yet...moving targets can be a little tricky to photograph (especially at night, which it was nearing dark when I took these pictures).

This is her other horse, a Quarter Horse gelding. I absolutely love this guy, he is such a cuddle bug! And a BIG cuddle bug at that!

My (dirty) Appaloosa gelding Bruno. Yes, his eyes tend to creep a LOT of people out. He has two blue eyes. However, he is the sweetest and most gentle boy to handle.

This shot was not one I took purposefully to "hang on the wall". It was just a cute shot that I took. The black mare on the left is my husband's horse Gracie. Bruno (in the middle) who is not very fond of Lobo (Sorrel on the right) being so close to him. Horses will be horses as the saying goes.

This was a beautiful shot of the creek in the horses pasture. I hope to do some more photography in the very near future. So look forward to that, and if you like this pictures, come check out my Flickr account, where you can see more of my work.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Edison Nouveau "Autumn Harvest" Fall 2014 Edition

Pen Make: Edison
Model: Nouveau Fall 2014 "Autumn Harvest"
Color: Yellow, Gold, light browns
Nib Specs: Fine point; two tone
Other: Cartridge or Converter filling system. Can only be purchased at Goulet Pens.

The Edison Nouveau. A pen specifically and ONLY available at The Goulet Pen Company. You can order an Edison pen just about anywhere. But you cannot get an Edison Nouveau unless you go through Goulet, as it is a "Goulet Exclusive" only pen. This pen is their 2014 Fall Edition. They will be discontinuing this pen very soon! So come get it while you can.

My Experience

This pen is beautiful. I have always loved amber or autumn colored pens and inks. So the beautiful colors of the acrylic resin are a bonus. Surprisingly this pen is very comfortable to write with as well. I would say that it is medium - light weight and very comfortable to hold. Even when it is posted, it is not top heavy. Which, by the way, this pen posts beautifully; very snug. The cap is a twist cap as well as the body.

This pen was pretty nice to write with. The first ink I chose to write with was Diamine Autumn Oak - which color fit this pen perfect! It brought out the shading and that ink definitely was true to it's name "autumn" as it brought out some very wonderful autumn colors. For a few weeks, it wrote great. Then I noticed that it was writing drier. It appears that the nib on this Edison pen likes to attract ink...ink that wants to dry on it. Such an issue may have caused what followed...

 The tines on the end of the nib tweaked out of alignment (one tine was slightly higher than the other). I tried writing with it and the pen was so horribly scratch, it was miserable to attempt to write! So I messed with the tines all that I could, since I was at work when that happened. I was able to mess with the tines to get them back in place and I was off writing...although it still seemed a bit off after that incident. It took a good cleaning and re-inking with a more "wet" ink (Noodler's 54th Massachusetts) to get back writing. Even with an ink that is generally a wet performer in most of my other pens, especially the Lamy's, the ink did not flow as expect at first. I finally had to twist the piston and let down some more ink flow before it started writing and performing better. I have noticed that even with the Noodler's ink, the nib still collects ink at the end of the tines and seems to dry there.

This pen does have some feedback and scratchy feeling while writing. Maybe it is due to quality control (nibs?) on the product, or maybe that is just how these pens were designed. But I may look into switching to a Goulet nib later on down the road. The nib would be great for those who like a little feedback and like knowing that the pen is on the paper. I tend to like a more buttery smooth nib most of the time. However, I will definitely be keeping this pen in regular use.

So, if this is a pen that may fancy you, head on over to Goulet Pens and order it before it is gone. This beautiful pen can be purchased for $149.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

INK REVIEW: Diamine Autumn Oak

Brand: Diamine
Ink: Autumn Oak
Color(s): Gold; yellow; orange tint
Price: $12.95 for 80ml bottle ( Approximately .16 cents per ML)

This is one of those inks that you purchase that ends up surprising you. Most of my past experience with light colored inks is that they are too light to write with. However, anyone who even knows a liuttle about me by now knows that I am a fan of Diamine and Noodler's inks. I probably should do a more in-depth review of this ink. Maybe down the road I can do a comparison review (since I have a decent collection of yellow/orange colored inks.

Inked up in an Edison Nouveau fine point fountain pen (2014 fall edition - so yes, it matched quite splendidly!). The shading of this ink is wonderful. As you can see from #1 writing sample, there is lots of character in this ink. Light strokes of yellow followed by darker strokes of a more orange tint. True to it's name "Autumn Oak" It definitely shows all the colors of autumn oak trees.

This ink definitely is not as wet as one may like, yet it performs beautifully. Dry times are fairly good too, depending on the paper you use. There is extremely minimal (if at all) feathering when writing, but again that also can depend on the brand of paper you are using. All around, this is a great ink for the fall months - or whenever you want to write with something bright and cheery.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Updates and future reviews

As you may know, I recently started a new career/job that will really put my education and skills to the test (finally!).  I get to work somewhere were I am making a difference and I enjoy what I do. Not to mention, I get plenty of time to spend with my family as well. Blessings from above!
So, I should probably let everyone know that November is a very busy month for me. Three birthdays to plan, Thanksgiving (oh, and Black Friday too!), and so much more. So I apologize to my followers for the delay in my postings.  I have quiet a few ink reviews to do as well as a few pen reviews too. I am also hoping to do a "Giveaway" in the near future to celebrate hitting our 100th blog post. So keep an eye out in the future for some pretty sweet Giveaways and really cool reviews.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

PEN REVIEW: Platinum Preppy @goldspotpens

This is another pen that I won in a giveaway from Goldspot pens recently. The Platinum Preppy. This one comes in a 05 nib size (which I would  classify as a medium nib based on the line that it lays down.

Name/Brand:  Platinum
Model:  Preppy
Nib Size:  05 (M) Medium (comes in other sizes)
Color:  Red
Price:  $3.95
Other: Takes Cartridges, but apparently it can take a converter too.
Great pen for Novice fountain pen users (or those just getting into fountain pens).

I have been writing with this pen for a few weeks. I am not usually a fan of ink cartridges that come with the pens, so I usually fill them with my own inks or ink samples. This was one of those rare times where I just popped in the cartridge and started writing. It wrote beautifully! Fairly smooth, yet had just enough feedback to let you know that it was touching the paper. I have not figured out if you can take it apart for cleaning yet (but it appears not).

It does appear that the ink is pink in the picture (left). However due to lighting, the color is a tad bit different. It is more of a bright red. Almost on the verge of going pink! I was using Ivory paper in a Piccadilly journal.

I love the demonstrator style and considering the price of the pen, it is a great deal for what you get! I highly suggest this pen for those starting out in the fountain pens and are trying to decide if fountain pens are for them. Smooth writing, easy to use, and cheap enough to throw away or even re-use! What more could you ask for!

Other Similar Links

Thursday, October 30, 2014

PEN REVIEW: Platinum Plaisir

Brand/Make:  Platinum
Model:  Plaisir
Nib Size:  Medium
Color:  Black 
Price:   $22

The Platinum Plaisir. An extremely affordable pen considering the performance. This is what I would describe as the "Beginner's" fountain pen. Great for those just getting into fountain pens and they do not want to spend a whole bunch of money on pens. Some of the great qualities of this pen include that it is scratch resistance and the new cap technology can prevent the ink from drying for up to a whole year.

Upon receiving this pen (Thanks to my friends at Goldspot) I popped in the ink cartridge that came with it and started writing away. Here is what I noticed:
  • Smooth
  • Definitely puts down a nice, wet,  Medium line
  • Lightweight (but not cheap feeling)
  • Comfortable to hold
  • You are able to watch the ink flow through the feed.
This is definitely a great pen, and I could have probably even gone with a Fine nib and been happy too! The fact that this pen comes in 7 colors (or more) is pretty awesome in itself. Cleaning this pen is also a breeze. Get some distilled water and a baby nose syringe and you are all set. This pen also takes a converter as well (Like some $6 or $7).

Disclaimer: I received (won) this pen (with a few others) in a bundle giveaway and this in no way changes my opinion or thoughts of these items.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Fountain Pen Deals & Special Buys!

Usually I do a mid week link post sharing those links that I found interesting and wanted to share. However, I have chosen to go in a slightly different direction. I would like to share some awesome deals that are available through a website called "Massdrop".  If you are not sure what Massdrop is about, it is fairly simple. People go on Massdrop, vote on what they would like to buy, and then the manufacturer or retailer is contacted. The more people who commit to buying, the cheaper the item gets. So with no further adeau, here are the specials currently going on!

Lamy 2000 - $104 (Normally $200) (Free Shipping)

Pilot Metropolitan (2 Pack) - $23.99 ( 37.50 MSRP) (Free Shipping)


Pilot G-TEC-C 12 pack of pens - $19.99 ($30 MSPR) (Free Shipping)

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

INK REVIEW: De Atramentis Sir Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle

Ink Brand: De Atramentis
Inks Color: "Sir Arthur Conan Doyle" also known as "Oriental Red"
Color tones: Light wine red
Pen Used: Pilot Vanishing point Medium nib
Price: $12.95 for a 35ml bottle (.37 cents per ML)



This ink was a bit of a challenge for me. At first, it wrote really light in my pen. I thought that maybe there was a bit of water that diluted it, so I let it sit for a day. I wrote the following night in my journal with it. Oh how it seemed so much better! It seemed to write great at first. Then, it started to skip. The hard start up's were after. As you can see from the picture above, it was fairly difficult to write with.

Now, here is the weird quirk. It only seemed to really be a pain on Clairefontaine paper! Yea, that is weird. I wrote with it on copy paper - fine. I wrote with it on my Piccadilly journal - fine. I wrote with it on Rhodia Paper - did okay; no issues that I can recall. But seriously, this ink is paper picky? And to be more specific, it was with Clairefontaine Triomphe paper where I had this issue. On occasion, it would skip with the other papers. 
I even thought that maybe I was out of ink, so I checked the pen - full of ink and working great.

This is probably not an ink that I would recommend to anyone, just because it can be finiky and it performs poorly.

My Star Rating: 1 out of 5 stars

Other Similar Links

Monday, October 20, 2014

INK REVIEW: Diamine Flamingo Pink

Ink Brand: Diamine
Inks Color: "Flamingo Pink"
Color tones: Pink; soft pink; baby blanket pink
Pen Used: Lamy Safari neon yellow Fine point nib
Price: $12.95 for an 80ml bottle (.16 cents per ML)

 Beautiful Flamingo Coloring (wall.alphacoders.com)

It is hard to believe that I like a pink ink! I am more of the darker reds or navy blue/blue black color type of person. However, I stumbled across this ink and figured that I might as well give it a try. To my surprise, I like it.

  Disclaimer: I have attached a picture of a flamingo (left) to better show you the true color characters of this ink.


The color that you see here is a tad bit brighter than what the actual color is...this seems to be a common problem among swabs that are "scanned" and uploaded online. The color is, in all actuality, a much softer pink (hence the name FLAMINGO pink - which attributes more to it's color).

This ink performs beautiful. It has just enough shading to make it stand out and be easily read. Although the color is not over bearing either (like some pinks that are out there).
Even after sitting for over a week, this ink flows smooth and starts up with no problems!

My Star Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Other Similar Links

Sadly, there are NOT that many reviews out there on this ink... not sure why.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Monteverde: Re-Nib'd

In adding to my small collection of fountain pens, I have run into an issue with a couple of my Monteverde pens. I am not sure if it was just luck of the draw (and I got lucky...twice) or if it is a quality control issue that the nibs just plain suck.

I originally had a 1.1mm nib in my Monteverde Jewelria when I purchased it. It worked "okay" for a small amount of time. After about a week or so of use, I started having issues with the tines. Even after a bit of tinkering, I was un-able to get it to work properly. So I decided to jump on a Goulet #6 two tone Fine nib.

 Then after stumbling upon my other Monteverde score - A Monteverde Intima Volcano Grey on eBay -  I had the same issues. Yet again I was left with a few choices; to clean it out and store the pen for an undescribed amount of time, or to buy a new nib from the Goulet Pen Company. So yet another small financial addition to another Monteverde pen.

Now both of my Monteverde pens write B.E.A.U.T.I.F.U.L !!! (Thanks to the Goulet Pen Company for offering some superb nibs!). The only painful part is that you are spending an additional $15 (for a nib) on top of the original pen purchase price. However in my opinion, it is worth it! The Goulet nibs write so smooth, almost buttery smooth. So my recommendation is high for anyone who has a pen with a crappy nib; go buy a Goulet nib!

Other Similar Links:

Pen and Journal Passions - Review of Monteverde Jewelria
Well-Appointed Desk - Monteverde Intima Neon
Note Booker ESP - Reviews the Invincia