2018 Hobonichi Pre-release Announcement

How is everyone's progress on the choice planner this year? In case you are jumping on the wagon for a Hobonichi in 2018 or just curious of which covers would be part of the line-up, check out this link (sorry for the late notice on my part!). Hobonichi will unveil one cover a day until August 12th. The full line-up will be announced on the 18th.

Are you looking forward to your future planner?

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Original Sailor Jentle colors

When the original Sailor Jentle colors were discontinued several years back, I could literally hear the shattering noise of all ink lovers’ hearts. Perhaps now it is time to mend that wound. I just read an announcement from Goldspot Pens that the original Sailor ink line will return. As to whether this release is limited or permanent, it is still in the wind. If you have a hankering for Apricot, Grenade, Epinard, Ultramarine, Pêche, or Sky High, you may want to consider signing up for the notification email from Goldspot, as the ink will be available in early May. However, if you have purchased Sailor ink from its second release back in around 2013 or 2014, you may want to check out this post, for some colors in this line up are very similar to the original line.

*I am not affiliated with Goldspot Pens nor was I compensated for writing this post. Just want to give a friendship shoutout to those who may have missed the opportunity several years back 🙂

Happy New Year!

Happy belated New Year and Handwriting Day!

Even though this blog has been quiet, the pens in my rotation are ever increasing.  Toward the end of the year, I took advantage of various promotions and purchased some fountain pen ink I have longed for.  As you may have guessed, too many pens are inked!  I have since then cleaned out several pens, but still have 7 of them in rotation.

currently inked

Written on Maruman B5 Report pad

Continue reading →

Nomadic Easy Classification Pencil Case

 

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Selecting a suitable pencil case is close to a shoe fitting for Cinderella for me, probably because I am such an indecisive person who has a hard time deciding what to bring.  Most of the time, I only transport my selected stationery goods between home and work; thus, there is no urgent need for me to look for an adequate pencil case until I had to travel back home earlier this year.  Though the selected arsenal would be in my messenger bag with me in the cabin at all time, it was still better to be safe than sorry since I have planned to take a few fountain pen with me.  The prerequisites for this ideal pencil case are medium capacity (I prefer not to take too many items with me, as it does become harder to locate an item in the midst of pens) and some protections for fountain pens.  With these elements me mind, I thought a combination of a book style and a zippered compartment would do nicely, and after some perusal sessions, I settled on Nomadic Easy Classification Pencil Case in Blue.

Specification

  • Length:  21.7 cm (approx. 8.54 in)
  • Width:  9.2 cm (approx. 3.62 in)
  • Depth:  5.5 cm (approx. 2.17 in)
  • Material:  Nylon
  • Exterior color:  Blue with light gray trims (in this review), also available in black, gray, navy, red, and yellow.
  • Interior color:  orange (similar to the hue of Pilot Iroshizuku Fuyu-gaki)
  • Closure:  zipper
  • Numbers of compartment:  3
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Nomadic logo hiding behind the mesh part

Nomadic Easy Classification is large for me only because I am so accustomed to using pencil rolls.  With its dimension, it is a medium pencil case that is great for organization, daily carry, as well as traveling.  My very first impression of it was its lightweight.  Some pencil cases can be very hefty that discourage users from putting more items in it.  However, do not be fooled by its featherweight because all compartments have a thin padded layer to protect the enclosed goods.  The color combination is also eye-catching and gives a unisex appeal.  The one that is under reviewed here has hyacinth blue exterior and orange-red interior.

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YKK zippers

 

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double stitches all around

The nylon material is textured which gives a bit of grip to the pencil case that facilitates the overall retrieval of the case, and the standard YKK zippers ensure the ease of use and longevity.  I speculate that the driving force behind the design of this case is utility since there is no feature or compartment on the case that appears to be “extra.”  Though the quality of a product can be determined by the material or design alone, for me, details are indicative of the overall quality and concept of the product.  In the case of Nomadic Easy Classification, all the edgings have matching color double stitching to improve durability and to appeal aesthetically.

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tray compartment with mesh pockets
The design of case intrigued me because half of the case is similar to a book-style pencil case in that the upper half has a pouch that allows vertical storage of pens, which is ideal for fountain pens, while the bottom half opens to a small compartment that is great for post-it and other smaller items.  The other half of the pencil case is tray style with two mesh pockets on the sides, with plenty of room for pens and gadgets and added a sense of organization for commonly retrieved items, such as lead and bar style eraser.

 

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book-style-like side

 

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longer portion
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smaller compartment

Notice that I said Nomadic Easy Classification has a similar to book-style pencil case because the two compartments on one side unzipped into two flaps and do not completely open like a book.  One side is long enough to accommodate an average size fountain pen, such as a Pilot Kaküno.  Also because how long the compartment is, mini size fountain pens, such as Kaweco Liliput, might “disappear” in the pocket.  Interestingly, this is one of the times when I found pen clip handy since fountain pens can be easily secured in the pocket by clipping onto the edge.  The tray style side can fit quite a bit of pens; currently, I have 8 pens, a white-out pen, and a 15-cm (approx. 6 inches) ruler without the pen case looks overly bulging (that is with 6 fountain pens on the other side).  Though I place fountain pens in Nomadic Easy Classification as my daily carry, I would not suggest placing grail pens in them for the reasons that the case only offers light protection; however, it is suitable for any pens you would not mind or have a heartache if they have some signs of usage.

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Nomadic in action!  Tray compartment
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All fountain pens nicely stowed

 

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Storing page markers and post-it in the smaller compartment

For the one month I have used this case, I have not found any feature that I dislike.  It is a durable, lightweight, and utilitarian.  The space allowance that this case provides does not translate into the weight.  I would highly recommend it to anyone who is looking for a nicely and streamline designed case for the daily carry.

Resurfacing and update

Apologies for my long absence!  School definitely occupies most of my time, in addition to work and family.  The good news is that pen and paper still have significant presence in my life, no matter what.

Recently, I have gone back to Taiwan to visit my family, and you can almost expect me to have a set of stationery with me.  (Yes, yes, travel kit again).  I have to confess that I am particular when it comes to writing utensils, so one thing I would do first (yes, before I packed the luggage) is select stationery items I would like to have with me.

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Given that this is a longer trip (it is approximately a 16-hour flight outbound), instead of bringing the trustworthy Saki Collection pen roll, Lihit Lab Teffa Pen Case was purchased to fulfill this particular purpose.  I needed a pen case that offers a bit more protection and a bit more compartment to contain my choices of pens and gadget, as well as my OCD.

Lihit Lab Teffa pen case definitely answers the need of organization; there is a compartment for almost everything I have brought along with me.  Here is a breakdown of what I have inside of the pen case:

  • Pilot Kakuno Fine nib with Diamine Mint
  • Pilot Vanishing Point Fine nib with Rohrer & Klingner Scabiosa (not pictured)
  • Lamy Al-Star in Matte Black EF nib with De Atramentis Gingerbread
  • Zebra Surari (a ballpoint pen is handy when it comes to custom form!)
  • Pentel Ain Clic eraser
  • Pilot Furefure Corone mechanical pencil in .3mm
  • Zebra Optex EZ highlighter in purple
  • Pilot Neox Eno HB lead in .3mm
  • Pilot Coleto Multipen
  • Pilot Hi-Tec-C

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Ink that has been filled in these three pens have not been in the rotation for awhile; the revisit reminded me of how much I like them.  It is clear that most of the writing utensils are in fine or extra fine nibs.  In retrospect, I would bring Pilot Falcon instead of Lamy so there is more variety in nib sizes.  It is also obvious that all the writing instruments are quite colorful, partly because they are handy when it comes to note taking, and equally effective to stay awake while studying.  If it was an ordinary vacation, you might think I have gone to Lala land with a mini stationery store in my messenger bag.  Unfortunately, school work awaited while I was abroad, so nice stationery brought some solace to this task.
In addition, I also have the Hobonichi planner with me, not as much as a planner, but as a travelogue. It just happened that at the metro stations in Taipei, commemorative stamps were available at each metro station to collect.  Probably the most inexpensive and memorable souvenir.  🙂

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A note on fountain pen friendly post-it

Some discoveries are made serendipitously, especially when it comes to fountain pens.  Though they are such endearing writing utensils, finding paper, especially post-it, that can tolerate the ink can be a bit of a challenge.

It just happened that I was delegated the responsibility of ordering office supplies for my unit at work (stationery nerd’s dream come true?  My supervisor obviously does not know the existence of this blog), and I was puzzled by how regular Post-it does not adhere well to any surface, so I ordered the Super Sticky type.  While randomly grabbed a Super Sticky Post-it to scribble notes, I softly cursed at myself because I wrote with a fountain pen, but only to find out, oh, no ink blobs!  Of course this phenomenon piqued my curiosity, so I decided to do a small experiment with several fountain pens I had with me.  In all samples, blue is the Super Sticky while the pink is a regular post-it made with recycled paper.  Both varieties are manufactured by 3M.

Montblanc Royal Blue in J. Herbin Rollerball

This pen and ink combination work well with both varieties.  Very minor feathering can be detected where I rested the pen tip slightly longer, but over all, no feathering that will cause aneurism.

MB Royal blue

Sailor Clear Candy with J. Herbin Rouge Bourgogne

J. Herbin ink rarely works well with regular paper in my experience, and Sailor’s finer nib can caught the fiber in paper that is slightly toothy.  How does this combination work in both Post-it?  Well, better than I expected.  There are minor feathering in both Post-it, but not to the extent that the writing is distorted.  As for bleedthrough, there is none for Super Sticky and small specks of ink dots scattered on the regular Post-it.

JH RB

Pilot Vanishing Point and Montblanc Lavender Purple

Though I love the color, Montblanc Lavender Purple can be selective on paper.  Both Post-it actually have stellar performance in face of this difficult ink.  Very minor feathering on the regular one, especially where lines intercept, but no ink blobs.  As for Super Sticky, there is very little spidery line if you enlarge the photo.  No bleedthrough on Super Sticky, and ink dots for the regular.

JH RB 1

Pilot Falcon and Lindauer Purple

Since I am doing an experiment, might as well go all out, right?  Falcon was the wettest pen I had with me, so how do the Post-it notes stand?

Not too shabby if I wrote normally with no flex.  Yes, there is a bit of feathering along the corner on the Super Sticky, but words remain legible.  The feathering manifested a bit differently on the regular Post-it.  While feathering pretty much contained where the ink pools for Super Sticky, feathering spreads outward on regular one.
Falcon unflex

Here comes the ultimate test:  flexing!  The feathering is apparent without any type of magnifying glass, but still not too bad to the point that you see Gestalt blobs.  Super Sticky still holds well for the most part.  This writing sample exhibits the most bleedthrough compare to the previous four.  Comparatively, the feathering is worse on a regular Post-it.  In fact, the bleedthrough seep to the next note.

Falcon flex

I hope this series of experiment contribute a bit to the ongoing discussion on fountain pen friendly Post-it.  Though Super Sticky is not 100% feathering free, in my opinion, it does very well compare to my previous experience.  I am not certain whether all Super Sticky Post-it will perform the same as the one I used in the office, but at least there is some hope, right?

What is your experience with Post-it and fountain pens?