Category Archives: Features

So far there are three features on

The Weekly Loadout:
which shows what fountain pen and ink combinations I’m using this week.
Black Fridays:
where I showcase a black fountain pen, a black ink, and a black notebook.
The Trading Post:
where I provide a list of user submitted forms in order to promote the trade of fountain pen related items in the fountain pen community.

This page is the master list of all three, however, you can break them down by category by using the menu bar to the right.

Photo Post: 1960’s Civil Defense Documents and the Platinum 3776 Black Diamond

When cleaning out some drawers at work, I stumbled upon some really awesome looking radiation exposure manuals from the 1960’s. The type, layout, logos, and overall feel of these docs are just awesome. They’re great representations of the time period, both culturally and from a design standpoint. I found it awesome how well the Field Notes steno pad blends in with the documents. It really shows off the brand’s attention to detail and how they’ve pretty much nailed the look and feel they’re going for. I hope you enjoy the photos! The pen featured in these photos is the Platinum 3776 Black Diamond edition with a broad nib, fresh in from Pen Chalet!

Civil Defense Documents 1960s Platinum 3776-8 Civil Defense Documents 1960s Platinum 3776-4 Civil Defense Documents 1960s Platinum 3776-10 Civil Defense Documents 1960s Platinum 3776-16


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.



Fountain Pen Loadout – March 2015

March 2015 Fountain Pen Loadout-2Left to Right:

  • Karas Kustoms Ink – Kaweco Green Ink – Hero 9018 Fude Nib
  • Lamy 2000 Stainless – J. Herbin Orange Indien – B Nib
  • Pelikan M805 Stresemann – Sailor Miruai Ink – B Nib
  • Pilot Custom 823 – Iroshizuku Momiji – Architect Point
  • TWSBI 580AL – Noodler’s Bad Blue Heron – M Nib
  • Pilot Vanishing Point – J. Herbin Bleu Pervenche – M Nib

Notes: It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these and there are a lot of new things here. Also a few things I’ve had for a while but haven’t gotten around to reviewing yet. I just figured out that the Hero 9018 fude nib fits into the Karas Kustoms Ink and I’m having a lot of fun with that. I recently picked up the Lamy 2000 and the Pelikan M805 so those two are being put through their paces for official reviews – expect those soon! The Pilot 823 is almost always inked up, the architect point is so fun to use. I haven’t emptied out the 580AL in a while, no problems with the ink and no visible staining, which is nice. I’m not huge on this pen, but somehow it’s managed to stick around. I filled the Vanishing Point with the JH ink to do a review, it’s just about empty so it will be back in storage soon.

March 2015 Fountain Pen Loadout-1 March 2015 Fountain Pen Loadout-9 March 2015 Fountain Pen Loadout-8 March 2015 Fountain Pen Loadout-6 March 2015 Fountain Pen Loadout-5 March 2015 Fountain Pen Loadout-4

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


8 Reasons Why You Should Write With a Fountain Pen

8 Reasons Why You Should Write With a Fountain Pen

It’s no secret that I love fountain pens. They’re my preferred writing instrument of choice, and not without good reason. Check out the eight reasons below on what I think the best benefits are of using a fountain pen.  If you’re already a fountain pen enthusiast, share the list to help convert your friends!

Update: Here’s my Top 7 Beginner Fountain Pens Under $25 article too!

Monteverde Invincia Stealth Fountain Pen 1. Smoother Writing Experience

Fountain pens are capable of being some of the smoothest writing instruments out there. There are few other pen-to-paper experiences that are like a fountain pen. It’s hard to explain until you try it, jump in with a starter fountain pen and some nice paper and never look back.

Why You Should Write With A Fountain Pen-22. Limitless Ink Colors

Well, technically there are a few limits, but there are way more fountain pen ink colors available than your standard ballpoint or gel pen. There are many brands of ink out there and they all have different properties. Smoothness, saturation, shading, water resistance and permanence all vary across brands. There’s a color for every writing situation!

Why You Should Write With A Fountain Pen-33. Tons of Style Options

Whether it’s ultra modern and futuristic looking, or an actual vintage pen from 50 years ago – there are tons of style options for everyone out there. Maybe you like the Bauhaus-inspired Lamy 2000 (like me), or a Vintage Parker Vacumatic. Thousands of color options, body materials, nib designs and filling systems mean that there is something out there to suit many different design preferences.

Why You Should Write With A Fountain Pen-1-24. Less Disposable

Quit throwing away plastic pens when they run out of ink. According to the EPA, Americans throw away 1.6 billion disposable pens every year. Society is obsessed with convenience, which unfortunately goes hand-in-hand with disposable items. The pen on the left gets thrown out when it’s done, the pen on the right is from the 1950’s and still works as well as it did on day one. Invest in a fountain pen (it can be as little as $15!) and use a pen you can enjoy for years to come. Stop contributing to the landfill and write with something you’ll be proud to own and maintain.

Visconti Homo Sapiens Bronze Age Fountain Pen Review5. Great Feel in Hand

Unlike the skinny, plasticky ballpoint pens most commonly used in an office, fountain pens are made to feel great in the hand. Contoured grip sections (where you hold the pen) and more substantial weight result in a more comfortable writing experience. Again, there are so many options that you are bound to find something you like. The example above is made out of real lava rock, making for a unique feel.

Why You Should Write With A Fountain Pen-46. Improve Your Handwriting

While writing with a fountain pen doesn’t automatically up your penmanship, it can help! When learning how to properly write with a fountain pen, it helps to slow down. This decrease in speed can indirectly force you to take your time when writing out each letter. Have messy handwriting and want to improve it? Nothing like a fancy new pen to help motivate you.

Why You Should Write With A Fountain Pen-67. Cool Factor

Maybe it’s the inner pen geek speaking, but I find it fascinating that there are several parts and either a steel or gold piece of pointed metal that deliver ink to page. Capillary action draws ink from the internal reservoir through a feed to regulate the flow, all the way to the tip of the pen. When writing with a fountain pen, very little pressure (if any) is needed. Different pens have different filling systems and clear pens (called “demonstrators”) let you see all the inner workings. Tell me that isn’t more interesting than your standard ballpoint?!

Why You Should Write With A Fountain Pen-58. Start a New Hobby

Granted, you don’t have to go all-in to enjoy using a fountain pen. It’s fun to have something that needs a little bit of maintenance. Take pride in your pen collection by making sure everything is clean. There are plenty of local pen meet ups and there are a dozen or so pen shows across the country. You can take the hobby as far as you want it to go. Everyone I’ve met through the pen world have been incredibly friendly and generous people.


I hope I’ve made a few good points as to why you should write with a fountain pen! If you already use a fountain pen, what is your reasoning? If you don’t, what’s holding you back? Let me know in the comments below!

Stationery in Colors – Aluminum Edition

Welcome to the third installment of Stationery in Colors. Make sure to check out the first two! I was going to do the black edition next, but the photos didn’t come out quite as well as I wanted. Remember to always check your camera settings, my shutter speed was a bit too slow and I wasn’t happy with the missed focus on several of the shots. This photo set is a little smaller, but the light airy feel is definitely more “Spring” than “dreary Winter”. Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Stationery in Colors-Aluminum-1

What’s in these photos (L to R):

Stationery in Colors-Aluminum-2 Stationery in Colors-Aluminum-3 Stationery in Colors-Aluminum-4 Stationery in Colors-Aluminum-6 Stationery in Colors-Aluminum-7

Thanks for stopping by!