Ink up!: BungBox 皇紫 Imperial Purple - Pilot Kakuno M-nib

by Mel in ,


I dropped by BungBox to check out their newest ink. It was so popular that it had sold out (that day, in fact). Bu Kaoru-tencho was kind enough to let me fill my newly-cleaned kakuno from the test bottle after I played around with it using a glass pen on some testing paper.

When I tried it out with the glass pen in the store and I really liked it, but it wasn't until I started to draw in my Rhodia ICE, that I fell in love with it.

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It's just so pretty. A very solid purple. It's the purple that you think of and want, but so rarely get. I've got to get my hands on a bottle when it's back in stock.

Though I must say, I will personally be calling this color "Sumeragi" rather than its official name: "Sumeramurasaki". I just like how it sounds. Sumeragi.


Things I do for a pen...

by Mel in ,


So, I was getting breakfast (or a "morning" as it is called in Nagoya) and I noticed a little sign next to the register that said "Free mini fountain pen fo new card members".

You know where this is going.

I got one of their pre-paid point cards; I go to the cafe often enough anyways that getting the point card makes sense (or so I tell myself). The staff charged my new card and gave me a fountain pen that looked quite like a Petit1.

It turns out that it's one-time use. I might write up more about it, but right now, it's at work. I might just attempt to make it an eye-dropper when I use up the ink. 


Today's Haul: Maruzen (丸善) 2014.05.26

by Mel in ,


After spending three hours writing out podcast script at a family restaurant (think Denny's), I decided to reward myself with a trip to the Maruzen, a chain of book+stationery stores of quite high quality (personal opinion).

I blame the "reward" state of mind, the Maruzen point card, a 5am wake-up time to teach a 7am class, and the three cups of coffee I had at the family restaurant, but I spent two and a half hours making laps through the stationery area, repeatedly taking items from the shelf and returning them and taking them from the shelf again.

I'm pretty sure the staff thought I was one of those crazies and they were pretty damn right to think so.

The previously described state of mind also made me more susceptible to marketing ploys, especially if it's new stuff (excuses, excuses). The two first items I picked up were a Frixion, which is exactly the same as a regular black Frixion except that the barrel is fancy, and a Rhodia Ice Number 12.

 Today's haul. I'd like to congratulate myself on my self-constraint.

Today's haul. I'd like to congratulate myself on my self-constraint.

I ended up buying both along with a B5 loose-leaf folder, a Surari, a card for my mom, and the first volume of the Biblia series, which I heard really good things about. Might write more about this on my other blog.

Onto the highlights of this particular haul.

Pilot Frixion Ball Knock Design Series 0.5 Black Color Block

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First, let me say that I am both a huge Frixion user and not a huge Frixion user.

I use the full rainbow of the clicky ones for work because I write notes for the people I teach and with my horrid handwriting, the erasability has been a lifesaver.

 Placement of the display was also at the front of the store. Well played, Maruzen. Well played

Placement of the display was also at the front of the store. Well played, Maruzen. Well played

But as many in the pen blogosphere have noted, the black is not quite black. It's more a dark grey and that bothers me greatly so outside of work, I use my trusty Zebra Sarasa Clip 0.5 Black and more recently, fountain pens, but that's a whole different post. (I have to give Pilot credit, though, because the black has gotten darker over the years.)

However, regardless of my stance on the Frixion, as mentioned above, I'm a sucker for marketing and when I saw this display, I couldn't resist the fancy barrels. 

After a bit of internal rationalizing, my rational side gave in and I got the colorful one.

A bit of Internet searching has informed me that these six new designs are up for release on June 1st (FYI: today is May 26th) and target the designer community. I'm not quite sure if the very nature of this pen appeals to members of the designer community, but they sold at least one to a member of the "ooh shiny" community.

I just wish the explanations and warnings were a sticker because they totally take away from the overall look. Though apparently not so much as to deter my purchase. 

 For anyone curious, it says "If you rub with the rubber on the top of the pen, the color will disappear. This cannot be used for signatures or addressing envelopes. Warning: Do not use this for anything other than writing. Avoid using the pen at an angle higher than parallel to the ground and retrack the pen after use. Do not leave under high heat; ink will lose color when it reaches over 60 degrees Celcius."

For anyone curious, it says "If you rub with the rubber on the top of the pen, the color will disappear. This cannot be used for signatures or addressing envelopes. Warning: Do not use this for anything other than writing. Avoid using the pen at an angle higher than parallel to the ground and retrack the pen after use. Do not leave under high heat; ink will lose color when it reaches over 60 degrees Celcius."

After reading one of the news articles I've learned that the one called "Indicator" changes appearance when clicked. Dude! Want! Currently debating changing back out of my PJs and leaving the comfort of my room to go back out to the center of town to get it. Just checked outside, it's raining. Staying in my PJs, it is!

Zebra Surari 0.5 Black Ink Earth Sky Blue

As I mentioned, my go-to black pen is the Zebra Sarasa, but gel ink isn't all-mighty and while I have a permanent marker, I wanted to pick up a black Surari to have in my arsenal. I was going to get the basic model in 0.7 Black, but when their are so many barrel options, why not get a cooler looking one? I almost got a clear dark turquiose until this one drew my eyes.

 It's pretty. I like it. Amazing what a happy color can do for your mood.

It's pretty. I like it. Amazing what a happy color can do for your mood.

It's an 0.5, but I'm a sucker for light blue and chocolate brown. And the label calls it Earth Sky Blue. Even better! This pen makes me very happy and really, can you ask for more?

Rhodia Ice Number 12

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Believe it or not, this is my first Rhodia. 

Of course I knew about them, but maybe it was the bright orange and black or maybe it was the binding, but I was never attracted to these. I suppose some of it had to do with my constant choice of many other quality notebooks. I've been a Mnemosyne fan ever since I first took one in my hands years and years ago.

But after getting into fountain pens earlier this year and reading a lot more stationery blogs, my (online) exposure to them increased and my curiousity grew. And then I saw pictures of the special edition white Rhodias. I was pretty much sold. White and silver are a classic favorite and "special edition" has a seductive ring to it that I often can't resist.

And resist, I did not when I saw these on display. Unlike many occasions when I buy a notebook with the conviction that I'll find a use for it, I knew this would be used for recording pen/ink combinations. I'll be using this for all future "Ink up!" posts. Just the right size to scribble stuff out. My task for tonight: to make pages for my currently inked pens.

 Didn't know what to do, so I drew some zentangles. Does this means I have to do this for each one? Hmmm....

Didn't know what to do, so I drew some zentangles. Does this means I have to do this for each one? Hmmm....

One down, four to go. This might take a while... 

More posts to come! (o^^o)


Ink up! インク、イン!: Pilot Iroshizuku Ama-iro - Pilot kakuno F-nib

by Mel in ,


 パイロットカクノにパイロット色彩雫「天色」

パイロットカクノにパイロット色彩雫「天色」

I emptied the black cartridge in my soft blue kakuno so I could fill it with a heavenly blue from the Pilot Iroshizuku series. And I am so happy with this ink in this pen. It is quite lovely.

And now that my basic colors have been covered, hopefully my ink buying habit will take a break. I'm going to enjoy using them by sending out many many postcards and letters.

早くソフトブルーのカクノちゃんに色彩雫を早く入れたくて、先に入っていた黒とカートリッジを使い切った。そして素敵な「天色」を入れて書いてみたら、幸せ気分。やっぱりこの組み合わせはぴったり。

とりあえず、色が揃ったので近いうちは新しいインクを買わないと思う。持ち色でたくさんのハガキと手紙を出そうと思っています。


Ink Up!インク、イン!: Bungbox Tsuyuhikari-Pilot Prera (M-nib)

by Mel in ,


  ブングボックスのつゆひかり-パイロット プレラ<M>; Bungbox Tsuyuhikari-Pilot Prera <M>

 ブングボックスのつゆひかり-パイロット プレラ<M>; Bungbox Tsuyuhikari-Pilot Prera <M>

My newly purchased Tsuyuhikari from Bungbox is named after a green tea from Omaezaki in Shizuoka, one of the major tea areas of Japan and it nails it. It looks just like fresh green tea (the tea leaf kind, not matcha).

I put it in my new Pilot Prera, which I purchased with the intent of filling with many different inks. An M-nib because I do so love shading.

I will be using this combination to write a lot of correspondence in the late spring and early summer. I stocked up on postcards in Kyoto for that same purpose. So much fun!

静岡県御前崎のお茶にちなんだブングボックスの「つゆひかり」を新しく購入したパイロットのプレラに入れました。様々なインクの濃淡を楽しむためにちゃんとMのペン先。

つゆひかりはまさに淹れたての美味しい緑茶の色で惚れた。この組み合わせで春から夏に京都仕入れた沢山の 葉書で友達に書こうと思ってます。楽しみ!


Ink up!: Bungbox L'Amant in Pilot kakuno Soft Pink

by Mel in ,


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The pink cartridge (finally) ran out in my Soft Pink kakuno, so I cleaned it, attached a converter, and filled it with my newly purchased L'Amant, a purple with pink original ink from Bungbox.

It was a bit scratchy at first and I took a page of scribbling and doodling to get used to it, but now I'm quite taken by it. 

The strange thing is that it isn't a color I would normally choose. Totally out of my comfort zone palette and maybe that's why I felt a slight hesitance when I bought it, unlike the unquestionable giddiness I felt when ordering the Pilot Iroshizuku Ama-iro. When I tried L'Amant at Bungbox, my reaction was "oooh", while with the Ama-iro, I smiled and even started to giggle. (We'll see how I feel when I get it in the Soft Blue kakuno.)

But as I thought about it, I realized L'Amant compliments a lot of my stationery well *because* it is outside of my regular choices. And while I would shy from buying a shade like it in a gel pen, I'm quite happy with this bottle of ink. 

ピンクのカートリッジが終わったので、新しく手に入れたブングボックスの「ラマン」をソフトピンクのカクノちゃんに入れた♪ 最初の頃はちょっとカリカリって感じだったけど、ページ1枚分書いたり描いたりして私もインクも馴染んできた。かなりお気に入り。

ブングボックスで沢山のインクを試した時、後で注文してある色彩雫の「天色」が紙に触れた瞬間、ニヤけて、思わず「コレだ!」と声が出てしまうほどドンピシャな色だけど、「ラマン」は「おおお」と感心する色だったが、赤系の紫は普段の私的な色ではない。

しかし、だからこそ、持っているレターセットやハガキと良い感じにお互いを引き立てているということが判明。手紙やハガキを出す楽しみがまた増えた。

更にゲルインクの場合、普段使わないからもったいないと思うところ、万年筆のインクだと冒険したくなる。これも不思議な発見。