Category Archives: Reviews

The master list for all fountain pen, fountain pen ink, and stationery reviews:

Omas Ogiva Alba Fountain Pen Review

Omas Ogiva Alba
Fountain Pen

- Handwritten Review -

  • Review Inks: J. Herbin Blue Pervenche, Orange Indien, Sailor Miruai

Omas Alba Fountain Pen Review-1


Writing Samples:

Omas Ogiva Alba Writing Sample



Omas Alba Fountain Pen Review-19Since hearing about the Omas Ogiva Alba, I was very interested in checking them out. Omas pens typically tend to cost a bit more than the $495 entry fee for these. There are plenty of reasons justifying the price tag, and I’m a huge fan of the brand. The pens are made in Italy, hand finished, and assembled with love. The nibs are some of the best I have written with as well. Huge thanks to my friends over at Kenro Industries (the US distributor of Omas, Aurora, Sheaffer and Montegrappa) for letting me borrow these beautiful pens for review. Full disclosure – I no longer work for Kenro Industries, but don’t worry, we’re still friends. Read on to find out how the Omas Ogiva Alba was and head over to Goulet Pens if you want to pick one up!

Appearance & Packaging:


Omas Alba Fountain Pen Review-10


The first thing that stands out about the Albas is their vibrant colors. I think the teal, orange and purple work together quite well. They’re definitely fun and will no doubt breathe some fresh air into a pen collection full of black and grey pens. When you look at (and feel) the pen after being blinded by the translucent cotton resin, you will notice that the body and cap are ribbed. Not only does this add some nice tactile feel, but it definitely makes the pen more interesting to look at and bounces light off very nicely. The Ogiva is a classic cigar shaped pen with very classy furnishings. The clip is sturdy and has a built in roller to ease the pen in and out of shirt or pants pockets. I really like how the step from the barrel to the grip is very gradual. There’s no sharp drop off and the pen looks just as sleek uncapped as it does when sealed up. The Albas come in Omas’ standard packaging, which is minimalist and nice. It’s a sturdy box lined with grey felt in a dark grey metallic sleeve. With the holidays coming up, it would make a great gift presentation.

Nib Performance & Filling System:


Omas Alba Fountain Pen Review-11


In my opinion, Omas has some of the best nibs in the business. They’re all tested and tweaked before leaving the factory and it’s not hard to tell that they really care about the overall writing experience. Omas nibs are definitely wetter than the standard pen, but this adds to the silky smooth experience. I was lent an extra-flexible 14k fine nib, a standard 18k medium nib, and an 18k stub. Out of the bunch, the medium is my favorite. But first, a little about each nib.

Omas Alba Fountain Pen Review-6

The 14k nib is extremely soft. When writing in cursive, you can get some incredible line variation when pushing the nib. However, be careful as the softer gold can easily be sprung. Admittedly, the extra flex was much better suited for cursive than it was with my standard small caps writing.

Omas Alba Fountain Pen Review-8

The medium nib is pretty much perfect for me. It’s got a nice huge sweet spot, it’s silky smooth, and has just a bit of spring to it, making for a nicely cushioned writing experience. The flow runs on the wet side, so make sure you load it up with an ink that will behave.

Omas Alba Fountain Pen Review-7

I’m not much of a stub guy, but this one is quite nice. It’s buttery smooth and it’s not too sharp at the edges. The pen lays down a nice line and there’s noticeable variance between the cross and down strokes. Overall, I’m extremely happy with the nib performance. They definitely hold up to my Nakaya and my all-time favorite Lamy 2000.

Omas Alba Fountain Pen Review-15

The Ogivas fill via piston, which is smooth to turn and holds a ton of ink. The translucent resin allows you to see your writing fluid of choice sloshing around inside the pen body. No complaints here and the large ink capacity is a good thing, especially when the pens tend to run wet.



Omas Alba Fountain Pen Review-16


The Ogiva is a classic cigar shaped pen. The cap is capable of posting, but I prefer the length and balance without doing so. It’s very close in size and shape to my Pilot Custom 823, which I really like. It’s not an oversized pen, but it’s not small. Definitely right in the middle of the road. I’d say my hands are average size just to give you some scale. The fit and finish are both superb, there are no seams, no marks – just nicely polished and textured cotton resin. The pen is nicely weighted and balanced as well. My only issue with the entire pen is that I wish the grip had a taper at the end. I’ve found myself subject to inky fingers because of the straight grip. It’s definitely not an issue, but a personal preference.

Omas Alba Fountain Pen Review-18


  • Great build quality
  • Great nibs
  • Bright colors
  • Fit and finish are great
  • Priced right for an Omas


  • $495 is still expensive
  • I wish the grip was tapered at the end



Omas Alba Fountain Pen Review-14

The Omas Ogiva Alba is a great pen. There are a ton of different nib options and the three colors are fun and refreshing. The fit and finish are on point and you can really tell that the people who make these pens care. At $495 it’s not a no-brainer, but if you’ve been interested in the brand and would like to see what the fuss is about with a relatively low barrier to entry for an Omas pen. You will not be disappointed by the writing experience. Pick one (in each color?!) up at Goulet Pens – the exclusive retailer until the end of the year today!



Disclaimer: This pen was provided to me as a loaner for review purposes by Kenro Industries. All opinions are my own.

About these ads

Field Notes “Ambition” – Winter 2014 Colors Edition – Review

Field Notes
Winter 2014 Colors Edition

Field Notes Ambition Winter 2014 Review-10

Specs From Field Notes:

“Our old friends French Paper Co. of Niles, Michigan supplied “Olive,” “Wine,” and “Chocolate” 100# Speckletone for the covers, with production bouncing around the Midwest for the last few weeks. Printing started in Chicago’s suburbs at eDoc, then the covers were delivered to Nu Wave Diecutting & Finishing in downtown Chicago to emboss the cover logo. After a trip back to eDoc for bindery, they were trucked down to Liberty Book and Bible in Indianapolis for a process nearly as old as bookbinding, but all-new to us!”

Field Notes Ambition Winter 2014 Review-4


Wow. That’s what I said when I saw these online for the first time. It’s like they made an edition for me. There is absolutely nothing I don’t like about these. The muted tones, the gold ink, the different (and very useful) rulings in each book, and the awesome gilded edges all add up to probably my favorite FN edition yet. The books each have a different ruling.

Field Notes Ambition Winter 2014 Review-6

The green is a ledger (which I’m using to help myself budget and save) a 56 week day book (which I’m using to micro-journal) and a standard graph book for everything else that doesn’t fit in the first two. I’m currently carrying the book in a Midori-style leather cover that holds the three books in place with elastic bands (Thanks to Cary Yeager of Fountain Pen Day for that!).

Field Notes Ambition Winter 2014 Review-2

Like I said before, there’s nothing about these books that I don’t like. The paper in Field Notes has been historically mediocre when using a fountain pen, but finer nibs and the right ink will work on these with no issues.

I’m probably going to be using gel though, specifically one of my favorites – the Zebra Sarasa 0.7mm in Dark Green. Like all of the “COLORS” editions, this one is limited so get over to Field Notes ASAP if you like what you see. I picked up three packs and I’m seriously considering more!

Processed with VSCOcam with a2 preset
This was not staged. I was really wearing all of the colors that this edition came in. Like I said, I think they were made for me.



Related Reading:

Pens / Ink / Cases for Sale – November 2014

You ever look at all of your stuff and think, “Man, I have too much stuff…”? Well I just did that and I think it’s a good time to clear out some less-used pens and make room for some more. All prices are listed with the pen, please email to inquire. All prices include PayPal fees. Pens will ship insured via USPS. International shipping will be extra, please email me if you are interested.

Pen Sale 2014-9Kaweco Liliput – EF Nib – $68 retail – $40 shipped

Buttery smooth EF nib, condition overall is an 8.5/10. There is a very small nick in the barrel, but it does not affect writing performance or feel of the pen. I will throw in a few Kaweco cartridges as well so you can get writing right away. Great little pocket pen. Will ship in gift Kaweco gift tin.

Pen Sale 2014-6

Monteverde Invincia Stealth – B Nib – $68 retail – $40 shipped

Broad nib needed some work, so I smoothed it a bit with micromesh. Writes nice now. The pen is in cosmetically great shape. No box.

Montblanc Daniel Defoe Palm Green Ink Review

 Montblanc Palm Green
2014 Writer’s Edition
Fountain Pen Ink

- Handwritten Review -

PenMontblanc 149, Medium Nib
Ink: Montblanc Daniel Defoe Palm Green
Paper: Kyokuto FOB COOP B5 Dot Grid

Montblanc Defoe Writers Edition Palm Green Fountain Pen Ink


Huge thanks to Pen Boutique for sending the ink over for review! This is the Montblanc 2014 Writer’s Edition, Palm Green. The ink honors writer Daniel Defoe. I like the nicely shading green ink quite a bit. It’s a grassy green with a yellowy base that comes through quite nicely when the ink shades. The 149’s medium nib has a generous flow and does an excellent job of putting the ink down on paper. The ink is a limited edition, like the other Writer’s Series inks so if you like what you see, act fast! The packaging is different from Montblanc’s standard ink packaging (which I prefer), but I still like the presentation of the Palm Green. The ink reminds me of Rohrer & Klingner’s Alt-Goldgrun, but with more green and less gross. Thanks again to Pen Boutique for sending the ink over for review! You can pick up a bottle of your own right here.


Pen Boutique is a retailer of fine writing instruments, inks, refills, and accessories. I had the pleasure of meeting them at the DC Pen Show and checking out their retail locations. They’re a great store, thanks again for the ink!


- Nice Shading
– Great Color
– Limited Editions are always fun


- None!

Montblanc Defoe Writers Edition Palm Green Fountain Pen Ink Montblanc Defoe Writers Edition Palm Green Fountain Pen Ink Montblanc Defoe Writers Edition Palm Green Fountain Pen Ink Montblanc Defoe Writers Edition Palm Green Fountain Pen Ink Montblanc Defoe Writers Edition Palm Green Fountain Pen Ink Montblanc Defoe Writers Edition Palm Green Fountain Pen Ink Montblanc Defoe Writers Edition Palm Green Fountain Pen Ink Montblanc Defoe Writers Edition Palm Green Fountain Pen Ink Montblanc Defoe Writers Edition Palm Green Fountain Pen Ink Montblanc Defoe Writers Edition Palm Green Fountain Pen Ink



Field Notes Unexposed Fall 2014 Colors Edition – Review

Field Notes
Fall 2014 Colors Edition


Specs From Field Notes:

“Here’s what we can tell you: each “Unexposed” pack features three 5.5-inch x 3.5-inch 48-page memo books in an opaque black sleeve. The interior paper features our “reticle graph,” last seen in the “Night Sky” Edition from Summer 2013.”


Processed with VSCOcam with c2 preset  Field Notes Unexposed


If you have yet to notice the trend of matte black, grey, and darker colored pens on the site, I dare you to look at some of the back posts. This edition of Field Notes is definitely not my cup of tea, but that’s not to say it’s not something fun and different. I was hoping for some more typical fall-themed colors and it appears that we got the polar opposite. The cool thing about the release is that they did not tell you what you were going to get. Instead of the usual “belly-band”, the books were sealed in a black paper envelope.

Field Notes Unexposed

There are 6 different colors, randomly inserted into the packs. I lucked out and got one of each across the three packs that I ordered. The super bright, Lisa Frank-ish colors aren’t going to see any use by me but they are a cool addition to the collection. The reticle graph ruling is cool as well, I really enjoyed it in the Night Sky edition from 2013. This was also the first round of photos from my new iPhone 6 – I think they definitely got the job done. What did you think of the Fall 2014 Colors edition?

Field Notes Unexposed





Related Reading: