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November 25, 2009

Pelikan Pelikano Junior - A Lefty's Review

Pelikano Junior

I was rather excited to get my hands on another fountain pen specifically designed for left-handed writers - the Pelikan Pelikano Junior with an "L" nib. It is an amazingly smooth writer for such an inexpensive fountain pen!

This pen is designed with beginning fountain pen users in mind and is actually a children's school fountain pen. The nib is rounded in shape so it is not "pokey" (especially important for us lefties) and it is very forgiving. I can even write a fine line with it when the nib is upside-down!

The nib is a Pelikan "L" size for left-handed writers, or an "A" size on the version of the Pelikano Jr. for right-handed writers. It makes a medium-broad size line and has a very wet ink flow. In fact, if you carry this pen with you, you'd better have an extra ink cartridge on hand for when your ink runs out (Pelikan 4001 giant ink cartridges are a good choice). Some people might not appreciate this small inconvenience, but I like changing ink colors frequently so this is one thing about the Pelikano Jr. that I really like. Since this pen lays down a lot of ink, for a lefty I would suggest using an ink with a decent drying time to help prevent any smudges. Because it produces a bold line, this is also a good pen for those of us that like to use light or bright fountain pen ink colors.

The funky, minimalist and colorful design of the Pelikano Jr. instantly appealed to me. The pen is rather chunky, but not heavy, and provides a good rubber grip designed to assist with finger placement. When you unscrew the pen there is a smooth area to attach a name sticker to (plain stickers are included with the Pelikano Jr.). When the pen is screwed back together you can read your name through the pen barrel, which is helpful to keep well-meaning right-handed friends, students, etc from swiping one of your favorite everyday fountain pens.

The Pelikano Junior has no clip, and the body is very plain except for a couple of oval shaped bumps to keep the pen from rolling and the cap has the word "Pelikano" on it in raised lettering. I like to write with the cap off of this pen. I would imagine that the rather large size barrel on this pen would be helpful to assist small hands learning penmanship for the first time, as well as for older ones that have a bit of trouble gripping a pen.

The Pelikano Junior fountain pen is a great pen for everyday use and it has fans that include people of all ages! The bright translucent Pelikano Jr. colors include green (my favorite), blue, red and yellow.

November 18, 2009

Gift Ideas for Handwriters

Recently in the mail I received two cards with personal "handwritten" notations inside. Amidst the bills and junk mail, I found mail I really wanted to read! I realized then that I don't write letters anymore. I either make a call on the cell phone or send off a quick e-mail to those I care about. But there is something so special about receiving a handwritten letter in the mail.

So I am determined to give this simple gift to those who need a bright moment in their day. I have underestimated the value of a personal note that can lift the spirit of others. Old fashioned? Yes, and quaint and sincere.

1st wish: I would like to obtain a LAMY Joy Calligraphy Pen. With a little practice, I think I can not only send a card or letter that will surprise someone, but it can be specially written as a well.

I also need some nice quality fountain-pen-friendly paper to use with my LAMY Joy Calligraphy Pen. Clairefontaine Triomphe stationery tablets and envelopes are just perfect for writing letters!

2nd wish: This wish is for my husband. When we had been married three years I bought him a very nice pen and pencil set. I had engraved on both "3rd". He still has this pen. Now that we are approaching our thirty-seventh anniversary, I would like to get him a really special pen once more.

I think the Platinum President vivid blue fountain pen with a bottle of Noodler's Ink is just what he'd like. I like the color and line and I think he will too.

3rd wish:  Included in the fun stuff I would like to get are the Platinum Preppy Highlighters - set of 5 with St. Patty's Eire & Lighting Blue Noodler's Highlighting Inks.

4th wish:  I have never owned a nice fountain pen. I think for starters, a slim shiny black Lamy Safari fountain pen would be nice.


As an aspiring writer, these are all gifts that I would love to receive and I feel that other writers would love to receive them too! --Lorraine

November 11, 2009

Check out the Greenery - Gift Ideas

What is more peacful or refreshing than looking out over a sprawling green medow or hiking past majestic green trees? Green exemplifies our home of Portland, Oregon-- young, fresh, intellectual, and environmentally friendly to a fault. If you have friends that share our love of green, they will love these gifts!

Clairefontaine Basic Clothbound Notebook - This understated green color is the perfect compliment to the classic Clairfontaine paper inside.  Clairfontaine's commitment to environmentally sound practices has won numerous awards. Read more about this on our blog entry Clairefontaine's Earth Friendly Paper.

Kaweco Sport Ice Fountain Pen - This pen is unique in so many ways! When it is capped it is compact as can be, but posts as long as a regular pen. It can be filled with your favorite green fountain pen inks.

Pelikan Pelikano Fountain Pen P460 - This fun fountain pen would be a great gift for even your youngest green-loving friends. Used widely by European students the Pelikano Fountain looks great and may even help improve handwriting. This pen is also available in a left-handed version.

J. Herbin La Perle des Encres Fountain Pen Ink - As discussed in our June 9th posting bottled ink is good for the earth and for your pocket. We've found that the green inks in the J. Herbin collection are especially vibrant.

Noodler's Ink also has a nice variety of green inks for a friend's favorite fountain pen.

Green Lotus Rice Paper - Harvested from the branches of the mulberry tree rice paper does not require any trees be cut down. In face, harvesting the bark for this paper does not even harm the mulberry tree! In addition no harsh chemicals or bleach were used to dye this paper. Wrap your gift in beautiful and environmentally friendly paper!

The Gardens of the Alhambra Board Game - The delightfully green colored game pieces build a garden as they are placed on the board. This simple-to-learn game is even enjoyed by non-game-geek family and friends.

November 04, 2009

Art Deco 7321 Journal

Le Petit Prince Journal from Art Deco 7321

From the moment the Art Deco 7321 Journals arrived in our shop I knew I had to have one. The quality cloth bound covers and storybook themes of these journals remind me of books I loved as a child.

The My Roman Collection Journal that I picked out has 120 sheets of ivory color college ruled paper. I'm not sure exactly what weight this paper is, but it must be at least 90 or 100g. The lines do not go all the way to the paper's edge - there is about a 3/8" margin around the page so the journal paper has a nice solid color appearance on the edges when the journal is closed.

I found that this paper works quite well with fountain pens. I've tried using several fountain pens all with different inks and found that with most of the pens & ink I tried there is very little or no ink that bleeds through the paper. One of my very inky LAMY Safaris bleeds through the paper a little bit, and my J. Herbin Vert Pre and Noodler's Nightshade inks feather a little bit on this paper. Depending on the color of the ink and the width of the nib you can lightly see the writing through the paper, but I write on both sides of the pages without any problems and the writing is easy to read. The ink drying time is pretty fast on this paper, which is important for a lefty like me.

This paper also pairs very well with rollerball pens. I tested it with Pelikan Pelikano, Kaweco Sport and Pentel Tradio rollerball pens, all filled with black ink, and they all performed very very well. 

Another thing I like about the Art Deco 7321 Journals is the size. They are compact enough that you can easily carry them, but they are not so small that they are difficult to open. I like the feel of the cloth cover in my hand. The binding is a good quality stitched binding that you can even turn 360 degrees and not worry about pages falling out.

Art Deco 7321 Journals are a pleasure to use and make great gifts! They are available with Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Dear Alice, My Roman Collection and Le Petit Prince covers.



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