All posts by edjelley

J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor – Ink Review + Video

J. Herbin 1670
Emerald of Chivor
Fountain Pen Ink Review

PenLamy 2000 Stainless Steel – Broad, Folded Nib Dip Pen
Ink: J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor
Paper: Kyokuto F.O.B. COOP – Dot Grid – B5

J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor Review-11Notes:
So, I’ve found my new favorite ink…this one. J. Herbin’s Emerald of Chivor is an awesome shade of teal with the signature 1670 gold flakes. In addition to the gold, there’s an incredible red sheen seen around the edges of each letter and where the ink pools – resulting in an ink with intense depth. The ink flows well, if anything a bit on the wet side in my Lamy 2000’s broad nib. There’s so much depth to this interesting ink and I absolutely love it. Even my friends who have seen it (who couldn’t care less about fountain pens and ink) commented on how cool it looked. I think the ink looks best in a broad nib, and even better in a folded nib dip pen. On top of the gold flakes, the red sheen, and the high saturation, the ink has a nice degree of shading. J. Herbin really hit it out of the park with this intensely complex ink!

Be on the lookout for Emerald of Chivor in stores later this summer!

Check out this video I produced for J. Herbin for the new ink:

All photos are uploaded in hi-res, click to enlarge!

J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor Review-2 J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor Review-3EFJ_1630 J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor Review-4 J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor Review-5 J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor Review-6 J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor Review-7 J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor Review-8 J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor Review-9 J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor Review-10 J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor Review-11 J. Herbin 1670 Emerald of Chivor Review-1


  • Red Sheen
  • Awesome color
  • Great shading


  • None!



Disclaimer: I received this bottle of ink pre-release for purposes of product photography and video production. I was not compensated for this post – all opinions are my own.

5 Best Inks For Everyday Use

5 Best Inks For Everyday Use

EFJF2530There are hundreds of inks out there from dozens of different brands. There is sure to be a color already made to suit everyone’s individual tastes. Different brands have different characteristics and properties, including dry time, flow, smoothness, saturation and the ability to shade. While an ink like Noodler’s Apache Sunset is fun to write with an stunning to look at when in a flex nib, it’s not overly practical. I’ve put together a short list of my top 5 favorite inks for every day use. In the list, you’ll see a blue, a black, a blue-black, a red and a green. Read on to find out what made the list!

EFJF25421. Diamine Asa Blue
Even though I’ve only recently acquired a bottle of this ink, it’s fast becoming one of my favorites. I have had great experiences with Diamine ink in the past – it’s easy enough to clean out, no staining, it’s well behaved on a lot of different paper types, and it’s reliable. This ink is a lovely shade of medium blue. It reminds me of Iroshizuku’s Kon-Peki, an ink I also love. I think the Asa Blue slightly edges it out of the top list because it is slightly more appropriate for everyday use due to the more subdued color.


2. Sailor Kiwa Guro Nano Black
Sailor’s Kiwa Guro Nano Black is one of my favorite inks. When I first got into fountain pens, I set out on the quest to find the perfect black. In my opinion, Sailor really did an excellent job with this ink. The color is super dark and it’s glassy smooth to write with. This is a pigmented ink, meaning that it will have a higher permanence than other inks, but be careful about leaving in a pen for extended periods of time. I’ve never had an issue with the ink, but it’s still worth a mention. Kiwa Guro is great for everyday use because it performs well on both regular copy paper and more premium pads like Rhodia. If you’re looking for the darkest, smoothest black ink out there, definitely consider giving this one a try!

Visconti Homo Sapiens Bronze Age Review Writing Sample3. Pilot Iroshizuku Shin-Kai
Not quite blue, not quite black, Shin-Kai is an excellent ink for those who can’t make up their minds. While regular black ink can get boring, this cross between blue and black adds a bit of color to the page while still maintaining a serious, professional look. If the bright blue color of Asa Blue is inappropriate for your line of work, consider going for a blue black like Shin-Kai. In case you were unaware, Iroshizuku is Pilot’s premium line of inks. They all perform very well on a wide range of papers and come packaged in a beautiful glass bottle that will look great on any desk.

Diamine Matador4. Diamine Matador
For the teachers and editors out there, this list had to include a red ink. This offering from Diamine is as bright as they come. The vibrant red ink goes on the page without any shading, which helps increase legibility. Load it up in a 1.1mm stub for bold lines that will stand out amongst an entire page of words with ease. While it may not be the best for regular writing (imagine trying to read a whole page of red ink!), it’s great for pointing out something that needs to be seen.

j-herbin-vert-empire-fountain-pen-ink-handwritten-review-4 (1)5. J. Herbin Vert Empire
Sometimes blue, black, blue-black, and red just don’t cut it. I like to keep a pen loaded up with a dark green ink to add some diversity to my notes. J. Herbin’s Vert Empire is a perfect green ink that’s both dark enough to read and colorful enough to be different. The color is easy on the eyes and a pleasure to write with!

I’ve given some suggestions on what inks make great daily drivers. Leave a comment below with your go-to everyday ink!

Fountain Pen Loadout – June 2015

June 2015 Monthly Fountain Pen Loadout-3Left to Right:

  • Lamy Safari Griso Grey – Diamine Grey – F Nib
  • Montblanc 149 – Iroshizuku Tsuki-Yo – M Nib
  • Pilot Custom 823 – Diamine Asa Blue- Architect Point
  • Nakaya Neo Standard – Diamine Asa Blue – S-M Nib
  • Lamy 2000 Stainless – TOP SECRET – B Nib
  • Lamy 2000 Makrolon– Sailor Kiwa Guro Black – M Nib

Notes: It’s kind of a weird feeling to be completely content with a set of pens. I’ve spent the last four to five years buying, trying, and selling a TON of different pens and I feel like I’ve finally achieved a small collection of writing instruments in which I am completely happy with. Since the last loadout post, I’ve sold off my Pelikan M805 Stresemann – only reason is that I didn’t bond with it. I had the same experience with my M605. They both write wonderfully, look great, and were classic looking pens. The problem is that I found myself reaching for my Lamy 2000 Stainless that I bought at the same time way more than the Pelikan.June 2015 Monthly Fountain Pen Loadout-2 As far as I’m concerned, this set of 6 pens is all I really need. The Safari is great for grab and go, the Montblanc is large and has significant presence, the Pilot 823 with architect point is super fun to write with, the Nakaya just has a feel in hand like no other pen, and I absolutely love my workhorse Lamy 2000s. Not in the pack are my Karas Kustoms Inks – I still have two of them and they’re not going anywhere. They’re just on a little bit of a break. I’ll continue to buy and try new pens, but right now I’m completely content with these and that is a really weird feeling…

June 2015 Monthly Fountain Pen Loadout-1 The inks I’ve been using are a bit different too. Two pens contain Diamine’s Asa Blue (Pilot 823 and Nakaya) – a wonderful medium blue that really pops off the page. It’s like a slightly toned down Kon-Peki and I’m loving it. I picked it up in one of Diamine’s smaller bottles to try out, and I suggest you do the same! The Grey Safari is loaded with Grey ink, also by Diamine. It just makes sense in there. The Tsuki-yo (I think it’s Tsuki-yo…can’t remember!) in the Montblanc is a darker blue that just feels right loaded in there. It looks a bit more serious and it’s a serious pen. The Lamy 2000 is loaded with Sailor Kiwa Guro Nano Black – one of the blackest black inks out there. It’s also pigmented and permanent. I had to sign some really important documents this week, so I loaded that up specifically for that. The last on the list is the broad nibbed Lamy 2000 with a mystery ink. I’m sworn to secrecy on what the ink is, the brand of the ink, and the color of it. Trust me, this one is REALLY exciting. I should be able to uncover it within a few weeks so keep an eye out!June 2015 Monthly Fountain Pen Loadout-7June 2015 Monthly Fountain Pen Loadout-5 June 2015 Monthly Fountain Pen Loadout-6 June 2015 Monthly Fountain Pen Loadout-4

In the mean time, if you need a fountain pen picture fix, check out my Instagram.



New Sponsor: Pen Chalet

I’d like to thank Pen Chalet for sponsoring this site this month. You can see their banner in the side bar to the right that will take you to all of the current specials that Pen Chalet is running. At the time of writing, they have a killer deal going on for the Kaweco ART Sport (the awesome acrylic version) for only $81, as well as Platinum demonstrators for 40% off.

To kick off the sponsorship, Pen Chalet is offering up an additional 10% discount on any order if you use the code “EDJELLEY” at checkout!

Field Notes “Workshop Companion” – Summer 2015 Colors Edition – Review

Field Notes
Summer 2015 Colors Edition
“Workshop Companion”

Field Notes Workshop Companion-11Specs From Field Notes:

“This 27th limited COLORS edition is a set of six books, boxed in a sturdy 60-pt custom slipcase with a sheet of crack-and-peel decals. Each of the books focuses on one DIY discipline — Wood Working, Automotive, Gardening, Painting, Plumbing, and Electrical — each containing tips, reference materials and the usual Field Notes wise-cracking.

Field Notes Workshop Companion-4The six covers are color-coded to compliment six tones of 100-lb cover stock from the French Paper Company’s terrific new “Kraft-Tone” paper, their first new grade in five years. The 70-lb text Kraft-Tone “Standard White Kraft” body pages feature our dot-grid, and are bound with tough brass staples. Anyone fixing a switch, planting a bush, or painting a door jamb will find these books make a nice addition to their workbench, junk drawer or toolbox.Field Notes Workshop Companion-2


This is going to be like my coverage on the other COLORS editions by Field Notes – more of an overview than a full review. If you’re unaware, Field Notes puts out a quarterly limited edition, usually themed, with some cool details involved. This set of 6 books is packaged in a cardboard slip cover and they’re themed to help you get work done. Each book represents a sect of handiwork, from electrical to plumbing. The covers are heavy 100 lb. stock that feels like it will stand up to being tossed in a toolbox or back pocket.

Field Notes Workshop Companion-10I particularly like the brass staples. They’re subtle, but I think that’s why I like them. The 70 lb. paper inside is quite toothy, but does a decent job holding up to fountain pen ink. I’ve been more into pencils lately, and the toothy paper feels great with some nice graphite. There’s a bit of feathering and some minor bleed through, but Field Notes haven’t ever been the greatest for fountain pens. Gel ink, ballpoint pens and even some markers work well with the paper, you shouldn’t have any trouble.

I’m a fan of the edition, and as with all COLORS editions, these are limited. Head over to FIELD NOTES to grab a pack (or two, like I did…) before they’re gone forever!

Field Notes Workshop Companion-12Gallery: