Greenery: 2017 Pantone Color of the Year Gift Guide

Greenery - Pantone Color of the Year 2017

Greenery – Pantone Color of the Year 2017

Pantone recently announced that the color of the year for 2017 is a shade called Greenery. Their website calls the Greenery “nature’s neutral” and provides this description of the color:

A refreshing and revitalizing shade, Greenery is symbolic of new beginnings.

Greenery is a fresh and zesty yellow-green shade that evokes the first days of spring when nature’s greens revive, restore and renew. Illustrative of flourishing foliage and the lushness of the great outdoors, the fortifying attributes of Greenery signals consumers to take a deep breath, oxygenate and reinvigorate.

I’m crazy about anything in the color yellow-green! We’ve put together a gift guide to help you shop for pens, ink and journals that are similar to this shade of green.

Greenery Themed Stationery

Greenery Themed Stationery

LAMY Safari Fountain Pen

The first fountain pen that came to my mind when I saw Greenery was this LAMY Safari fountain pen in green. If you haven’t already collected a Safari in this color this is a good year to do it! We replaced the regular nib on the pen in this photo with a calligraphy nib.

Pilot Prera Demonstrator Fountain Pen

The Pilot Prera Demonstrator Fountain Pen in Light Green has a clear body with a pop of green on the end of the barrel and cap. The nibs on Prera fountain pens are great if you have small handwriting or like to write with a very fine pen.

Pelikan M205 Duo Highlighter Fountain Pen

This Pelikan M205 Duo Highlighter Fountain Pen in Shiny Green is a special edition, so if this pen strikes your fancy don’t wait too long to add this to your desk. It comes equipped with a Broad BB nib and since it’s a fountain pen it can be refilled over and over again with highlighter ink. Our choice of ink? Why, of course matching Pelikan M205 Duo Highlighter Ink, also in Shiny Green.

Pilot Iroshizuku Fountain Pen Ink in Bamboo Forest Green (Chiku-Rin)

Chiku-Rin or Bamboo Forest fountain pen ink is a yellow green shade similar to the color of new growth on plants in the spring, which also happens to be the same color in nature that inspired the shade Greenery. Truly a beautiful and refreshing color!

J. Herbin Vert Pre Fountain Pen Ink

J. Herbin’s Vert Pre is another one of our favorite yellow-green fountain pen inks. The top of the glass bottle has a handy built-in place to rest your pen.  J. Herbin uses all natural dyes in their inks, which makes them non-toxic and pH neutral.

Rhodiarama Pad Holder - Anise Green

Rhodiarama Pad Holder – Anise Green

Rhodiarama Pad Holder No. 12 with Notepad – Anise Green

Carry your favorite Rhodia paper in this pocket-size refillable Rhodia notepad holder. It has a pen holder and pocket to stash receipts and business cards.

Rhodiarama Soft Cover Notebook - Anise Green Cover

Rhodiarama Soft Cover Notebook – Anise Green Cover

Rhodiarama Soft Cover Notebook with an Anise Green Cover

Your fountain pen will write like a dream on the high quality paper inside Rhodiarama soft cover notebooks. Your choice of lined or dot grid paper – just what those of you who are crazy about bullet journals have been waiting for!

Pentel Tradio Mechanical Pencil – Apple Green

The cap of the Apple Green Pentel Tradio mechanical pencil protects the tip from damage and breakage. It’s got a button on the side near the grip that you can click to advance the lead for uninterrupted writing.

Other ideas for a Greenery themed desk top include: the Quo Vadis Habana Journal in Anise Green, Quo Vadis Planner with a Bamboo Green Texas Cover, a Platinum Preppy Green Highlighter with Green Highlighting Ink, and the Staedtler Textsurfer Classic Green Highlighter. Several Clairefontaine notepads are available with yellow-green covers: you can request a yellow-green cover during order check out and if we’ve got that color in stock we will send it to you.

What yellow-green stationery items do you have on your desk?

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Fountain Pen Ink Art: J. Herbin Rouge Hematite 1670 Anniversary Ink

J. Herbin 1670 Anniversary Ink - Rouge Hematite

J. Herbin 1670 Anniversary Ink – Rouge Hematite

It’s the end of another year and we’ve been reminiscing about special releases of new fountain pens and fountain pen inks over the past few years. Back in 2010, when J. Herbin released their first 1670 Anniversary Ink in the red Rouge Hematite color, we had no idea there would be more to come. In addition to the original 1670 Anniversary red ink, J. Herbin has created Caroube de ChypreEmerald of ChivorBleu Ocean, and Stormy Grey.

The J. Herbin Rouge Hematite 1670 Anniversary Ink is a vibrant, earthy, rich blood red color, reminiscent of the historic color of the J. Herbin logo and the red sealing wax used by royal courts. Using the right combination of paper and nib, you might even see a gold colored sheen in this ink.

We’ve created a homage to Rouge Hematite using that very ink. The drawing is on Clairefontaine 90g sketch paper and was made by using a Pelikano fountain pen with a left-handed nib, a dollar store paint brush and a Pentel Tradio Stylo Pen.

What would you like the next color of J. Herbin 1670 Anniversary Ink to be?

J. Herbin 1670 Anniversary Ink - Rouge Hematite

J. Herbin 1670 Anniversary Ink – Rouge Hematite

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8 Retro Accessories That Will Rock Your Desk

In this digital age, fashionably nostalgic stationery is still highly treasured by writers all around the world. Here are eight of our top modern choices that reconnect us with days of the past.

J. Herbin Wax & Seal Kit

A personalized wax seal is a great way to make any invitation, thank you card or old-fashioned snail mail stand out in the crowd. Wax seals can be used to embellish wine bottles, for scrapbooking, to seal packaging, to add the finishing touch to a wrapped gift and much more. J. Herbin’s Supple Sealing Wax resists cracking or chipping when applied to envelopes being sent through the US mail.

J. Herbin Glass Pens

J. Herbin Glass Pens

J. Herbin Glass Dipping Pens

J. Herbin’s hand-blown glass pens are beautiful and elegant works of art made in the style of glass pens popular in 17th century Venice. The glass nib on this dipping pen has small spiral grooves that hold enough ink to write several lines without the need to re-dip. They can be used along with fountain pen ink or other specialty inks made for dipping pens.

Brause Calligraphy Dipping Pen Gift Set

Brause Calligraphy Dipping Pen Gift Set

Brause Calligraphy Dipping Pen Gift Set

For over 150 years Brause has been making steel calligraphy nibs of excellent precision and durability. This gift set includes a small bottle of ink and 6 different nib types for both script and calligraphy.

J. Herbin Calligraphy Ink

J. Herbin Calligraphy Ink

J. Herbin Dipping Pen Calligraphy Ink

J. Herbin Calligraphy Ink is specially formulated with natural resins allowing the ink to adhere to a metal nib, yet flow smoothly and consistently. For use with dipping pens, steel nibs, glass or quill pens, calames and brushes. It pairs well with the J. Herbin Glass Pens and Brause Calligraphy Dipping Pens.

J. Herbin 1670 Anniversary Fountain Pen Ink

J. Herbin’s 1670 Anniversary Fountain Pen Ink comes in a cool retro cube-shaped bottle that is sealed with wax and decorated with a “1670” wax seal. J. Herbin created its “Anniversaire 1670” inks in honor of the 340th anniversary of the J. Herbin ink brand. Napoleon, Victor Hugo and Louis XVI all used J. Herbin inks!

Delta Vintage Fountain Pen - Ruby Red

Delta Vintage Fountain Pen – Ruby Red

Delta Vintage Fountain Pen – Ruby Red

This Delta Vintage Fountain Pen is made from a mother of pearl acrylic resin that beautifully catches the light. Like fountain pens of the past, it is carefully hand-crafted and made with attention to detail to produce a quality writing instrument that can be treasured for generations. Also available in Lava Stone Black, Deep Ocean Blue and White.

J. Herbin Wooden Rocker Style Ink Blotter

J. Herbin Wooden Rocker Style Ink Blotter

J. Herbin Traditional Wooden Rocker Style Ink Blotter

The Traditional Rocker Style Wooden Ink Blotter from J. Herbin is easy to hold and a clean way to avoid smearing excess wet fountain pen ink. It can be refilled with Rocker Ink Blotter Paper Refills, or purchase larger sheets of Blotter Paper to tuck inside the cover of your journal or notebook.

Clairefontaine Triomphe Stationery Tablet

Clairefontaine Triomphe Stationery Tablet

Clairefontaine Triomphe Stationery Tablet

In addition to all of your great nostalgic writing gear you’re going to want some high quality paper to enjoy it with. Classic Clairefontaine Triomphe Stationery Tablets fit the bill with brilliant white 90g, acid free, ultra-smooth paper. Fountain pens write like a dream on this paper! Matching envelopes are also available.

What are your favorite “vintage” writing tools?

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Experiments With Fountain Pen Ink

Back in 2009 we were like mad scientists with our fountain pen ink – instead of buying a bottle of ink in each color we were mixing ink colors to create our own custom color shades. It was creative and a lot of fun, with some so-so results and some fantastic inky discoveries! Have you ever given ink mixing a try?

The four very basic ink colors you need to create a rainbow of other colors are cyan, magenta, yellow and black (or CMYK) which are also the basic ink colors used in printing. To get the equivalent of CMYK in fountain pen ink you need:

J. Herbin Ink
Cyan = J. Herbin Bleu Pervenche
Magenta = J. Herbin Rose Cyclamen
Yellow = J. Herbin Bouton D’or
Black = J. Herbin Perle Noire

Noodler’s Ink
Cyan = Noodler’s Navajo Turquoise
Magenta = Noodler’s Shah’s Rose
Yellow = Noodler’s Yellow
Black = Noodler’s Black

Platinum Mixable Ink
Cyan = Platinum Aqua Blue
Magenta = Platinum Cyclamen Pink
Yellow = Platinum Sunny Yellow
Black = Platinum Smoke Black

This was the inspiration behind creating our own Noodler’s Ink Starter Kit in 2009, which is still available at Writer’s Bloc. This kit contains about 1/2 oz each of the 4 basic Noodler’s Ink mixing colors in glass eyedropper bottles that are useful for measuring ink drops in your experiments. If you need somewhere to store your ink color creations, we’ve got several solutions for you: capped test tubes, eyedropper bottles, small plastic bottles and a blunt tip needle bottle (for filling empty ink cartridges).

Ink Mixing Color Chart

Ink Mixing Color Chart

Read more about ink mixing and check out some of our favorite custom ink colors:

Ocean Jade Ink

Ocean Jade Ink

Other reasons we were experimenting with fountain pen ink back in 2009 were to see if this would improve ink flow in some dry-writing pens and also to find the most saturated, blackest black fountain pen inks.

Green LAMY Safari with a Calligraphy Nib

Green LAMY Safari with a Calligraphy Nib

Another experiment that proved to be popular in 2009 was swapping the regular nibs on LAMY Safari fountain pens with LAMY calligraphy nibs. It’s a great way to try out some calligraphy without having to buy a whole new fountain pen. Have you tried this yourself? We used to swap the nibs for you in our shop. Now, you can buy an extra LAMY calligraphy nib at a discounted price at the same time as you purchase a LAMY Safari fountain pen. Or, if you’ve already got a LAMY Safari, you can buy the nibs separately. We’ve got easy instructions so that you can change the nib yourself.

Changing the Nib on a LAMY Safari Fountain Pen

Changing the Nib on a LAMY Safari Fountain Pen

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2016 Pantone Color of the Year & Your Favorite Office Supplies

Rose Quartz & Serenity - Pantone Colors of the Year 2016

Rose Quartz & Serenity – Pantone Colors of the Year 2016

The Pantone color of the year for 2016 is actually a pairing of two colors: Rose Quartz and Serenity. The Pantone website explains the thought behind their selection for this year:

Joined together Rose Quartz and Serenity demonstrate an inherent balance between a warmer embracing rose tone and the cooler tranquil blue, reflecting connection and wellness as well as a soothing sense of order and peace.

Would you like to add these calm, relaxing colors to your stationery arsenal? Below are a few of our favorite choices of pens, ink and paper related items that are part of this color family.

The first pens that come to my mind when I think of Serenity and Rose Quartz are the Platinum Plaisir fountain pens in a pearlized soft pink and frosty blue. Also worth mentioning is the popular Aurora Style Aquamarine pale blue fountain pen.

It’s not common to find pastel shades of fountain pen ink, however there are a few inks out there that remind me of the 2016 Pantone colors. Noodler’s Periwinkle Eternal Ink is inspired by the color of the blue curve of a periwinkle snail’s shell and Noodler’s Ink Polar Blue makes me think of washed denim. J. Herbin’s Bouquet d’Antan is a soft, muted shade of light pink. If the thought of a tropical sea makes you feel relaxed, then try J. Herbin Bleu Azur fountain pen ink.

The PlePle Candy Wrap Pen and Pencil Case is a calming shade of blue.

Personalize your letters or other items by using a brass stamp and J. Herbin Rose colored Supple Sealing Wax.

Shades of blue and pink pastel paper can be found in Clairefontaine’s Multiple Subject Notebooks (small, medium or large) and Clairefontaine Loose Sheets of paper with Graph or French Rules. Exacompta also has pastel colored index cards that are super smooth and their grid lines make it so that any side of the card can be the top.

What are your favorite Rose Quartz and Serenity blue colored pens, paper and ink?

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Fountain Pen Ink Art: Pelikan Edelstein Mandarin

Pelikan Edelstein Ink - Mandarin

Mandarin Pelikan Edelstein fountain pen ink is a well-balanced orange color, perfect for sketching autumn leaves. This ink is not water-resistant, and when I applied water with a paint brush it became a peachy-orange. When the ink is heavily applied it has the appearance of a dark orange, almost red. When I use this ink in a fountain pen for handwriting, it’s a fairly consistent orange, without a lot of shading to it.

I used J. Herbin’s Terre de Feu fountain pen ink for the background contrast. Upon first glance Terre de Feu looks like a chocolate brown, with a closer inspection I can see that it has a reddish undertone to it.

I chose an on off-white/ivory 100g Exacompta paper to complement the warm autumn ink colors. It was interesting to create this sketch using a glass pen. At times it was a little bit difficult to control the ink flow. Sometimes where would be too much ink and sometimes too little. I really enjoy the freedom of using a glass pen – it’s extremely easy to clean, easy to write with and rather fun to keep dipping it into your ink bottles as you run out of ink. When the paper was wet with a lot of ink, it did scratch the paper a bit which you can see if you look closely at the photo below.

What are your favorite fall shades of fountain pen ink?

Mandarin Ink

 

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Your Fall Stationery Style Guide

Do you like to change your stationery supplies with the change of the season? I do! Now that autumn is here the ink in my fountain pens changes to warm, rich fall colors such as orange, gold, maroon and brown. Of course, it is necessary to select a harmonizing pen and notebook to complete the ensemble. Here are some of our fall stationery favorites:

Yellow Leaf

Yellow & Gold: One of my favorite everyday writing tools is the LAMY Safari fountain pen which is available in a cheery bright yellow that reminds me of the autumn color of some maple or birch tree leaves. Yellow ink is not practical for regular handwriting writing, so I like to use a golden amber shade such as J. Herbin Ambre de Birmanie fountain pen ink. If you’re new to fountain pens, and you’re going to use bottled ink in your LAMY Safari or Al-Star pen, you’ll need to get a LAMY Z24 ink converter.

LAMY Safari Fountain Pen in Yellow

LAMY Safari Fountain Pen in Yellow

J. Herbin Ambre de Birmanie Fountain Pen Ink

J. Herbin Ambre de Birmanie Fountain Pen Ink

Orange Pumpkin

Orange: I love seeing all of the colorful autumn squash in the supermarket this time of year. The star of this fall’s orange fountain pens is the limited edition copper-orange LAMY Al-Star pen. This relative of the LAMY Safari fountain pen is made from light-weight aluminum with a metallic finish. LAMY created special copper-orange ink cartridges just to match this fountain pen. A couple of my favorite orange bottled inks with nice shading are Noodler’s Apache Sunset and Noodler’s Habanero ink. Want a paper notebook with an orange cover? Go no further than Rhodia‘s famous orange notepads available in all sorts of styles and sizes with fountain pen friendly paper.

LAMY Al-Star Copper-Orange Fountain Pen

LAMY Al-Star Copper-Orange Fountain Pen

R by Rhodia Notepad, Medium Size, Orange Cover and a Pilot Custom 74 Fountain Pen

R by Rhodia Notepad with an orange cover and a Pilot Custom 74 Fountain Pen

Red Maple Leaves

Red & Maroon: Doesn’t this orange Rhodia notepad look stylish next to these red Japanese maple leaves? The color of these leaves makes me think of the deep burgundy red color of the clear resin Bourgogne Platinum 3776 Century Fountain Pen. Pilot Iroshizuku Fountain Pen Ink in Momiji or Autumn Leaves is a red shade emulating the bright red leaves that are iconic of a Japanese autumn landscape. The ivory paper inside the red Quo Vadis Habana Journal complements the warm, autumn shades of ink that I use this time of year.

Platinum 3776 Century Fountain Pen - Bourgogne

Platinum 3776 Century Fountain Pen – Bourgogne

Brown Turkey Tail Fungus

Brown: I absolutely adore anything in tortoiseshell, and the Stipula Tuscany Dreams Peposo Fountain Pen in Brown Tortoiseshell is no exception! It’s a pity that this manly pen is too large for my small hands. This pen pairs well with J. Herbin Lie de The Ink Cartridges or Pilot Iroshizuku Wild Chestnut ink which is a brown color similar to the shade of a ripe, fallen chestnut shell during autumn. Aston Leather’s pen cases in golden caramel Tan or dark Brown are going to look great with and provide protection for any of your fall writing instruments.

Stipula Tuscany Dreams Peposo Fountain Pen - Brown Tortoiseshell

Stipula Tuscany Dreams Peposo Fountain Pen – Brown Tortoiseshell

What are your favorite stationery items for fall?

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Fountain Pen Ink Art: J. Herbin Bleu Pervenche

Mountain Bluebird drawn with J. Herbin Bleu Pervenche Ink

Mountain Bluebird drawn with J. Herbin Bleu Pervenche Fountain Pen Ink

J. Herbin’s Bleu Pervenche fountain pen ink is a bright summery turquoise blue color. It makes me think of the mountain bluebirds I used to enjoy seeing when I worked in the hills just outside of Portland, Oregon. This drawing was created with Bleu Pervenche ink using a Kaweco Liliput fountain pen (fine nib) on Exacompta 100g paper.

J. Herbin’s Bleu Pervenche fountain pen ink can be found in both 30ml bottles and standard international cartridges at Writer’s Bloc. Kaweco Liliput pocket-size fountain pens are also available with black or silver finish.

The Mountain Bluebird photo was found on wikipedia.org and it is credited to Elaine R. Wilson (source Nature’s Pics Online).

What’s your favorite summer blue fountain pen ink and what memories does it bring to your mind?

Mountain Bluebird 2

Mountain Bluebird 3

Mountain Bluebird 4

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12 Reasons We Love to Write With Gray Fountain Pen Ink

Stormy Grey Fountain Pen Ink is the latest addition to J. Herbin’s 1670 Anniversary Ink collection. The deep coal gray (anthracite) color with flecks of gold was inspired by J. Herbin sailing the stormy seas, encountering dark and wild oceans. The fine golden flecks in the ink are meant to invoke both strikes of lightening across the water, and also its dark and mysterious depths.

Why would anyone want to write with grey ink when there’s plenty of blue and black ink to go around? We’d like to share 12 reasons why we love to write with grey fountain pen ink:

12 Reasons to Write With Gray Ink

  1. It’s office friendly.
  2. It’s more interesting then regular blue or black ink.
  3. It’s easy on the eyes.
  4. It looks fabulous in a journal with silver pages or embossing.
  5. Great for sketching!
  6. Has the look of a pencil.
  7. Unlike a graphite pencil, grey fountain pen inks can have beautiful shading.
  8. Grey is associated with intellect and wisdom.
  9. It can make you think of silver.
  10. It is the same color as some cool animals: grey wolf, grey whale, koalas and elephants.
  11. It’s a calming, neutral color.
  12. It is classic and sophisticated.

Do you use grey fountain pen ink? If so, which one is your favorite?

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Which Gray Fountain Pen Ink Looks the Most Like a Pencil?

If you’d rather write with a fountain pen, but want your writing to look like it was done with a pencil, which gray fountain pen ink should you choose? Pencil lead varies in width and softness/hardness making your writing appear darker or lighter in color. Also the kind of paper you’re writing on and how hard you press down on the pencil can influence the appearance of the line that is produced. Fountain pen ink is similar – the results vary depending on the width of the fountain pen nib and the paper you are writing on.

Writing done with a variety of pencils

Writing done with a variety of pencils

The color of writing produced by pencil in our test turned out to be a warm shade of gray. Two fountain pen inks that are also warm shades of gray are Pilot Iroshizuku Fountain Pen Ink Kiri-same Autumn Shower/Scotch Mist and Noodler’s Ink Lexington Gray. Lexington Gray is a dark shade of warm gray and Scotch Mist is a medium shade.

Pilot Iroshizuku Scotch Mist Ink

Pilot Iroshizuku Scotch Mist Ink

Noodler's Ink Lexington Gray

Noodler’s Ink Lexington Gray

Three other gray inks that are cool shades of gray are: J. Herbin Gris NuageOMAS Gray Fountain Pen Ink and Pilot Iroshizuku Fuyu-syogun Old Man Winter/Rigor of Winter. When placed right next to writing done in pencil these inks have more of a “silvery” appearance (they are not actually metallic) because graphite pencil lead produces a warmer color of writing. On their own, away from any actual pencil, these inks still do have a pencil-y appearance.

J. Herbin Gris Nuage Fountain Pen Ink

J. Herbin Gris Nuage Fountain Pen Ink

Omas Grey Fountain Pen Ink

Omas Grey Fountain Pen Ink

Pilot Iroshizuku Rigor of Winter Ink

Pilot Iroshizuku Rigor of Winter Ink

We’ve scanned some samples of writing done on Clairefontaine French ruled paper in both pencil and ink for you to compare. What do you think? Are there any of your favorite inks you’d like to add to this list?

Pencil & Ink Writing Comparison

Pencil & Ink Writing Comparison

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