Thursday, March 31, 2016

Pelikan Edelstein Aquamarine: Ink Review

Pelikan Edelstein Aquamarine ink splatter with fountain pen.

Hello ink lovers! Madigan here, reviewing the new Pelikan Edelstein Ink of the Year Aquamarine. Following in the footsteps of the gorgeous Pelikan Edelstein Amethyst, this year's ink is a deep turquoise. I absolutely love it! It is well behaved, unexpectedly dark and has plenty of shading to boot. Read on to find out more.

Pelikan Edelstein Aquamarine fountain pen ink review, written with a Lamy Al-Star on a Rhodia Dotpad.
Pelikan Edelstein Aquamarine fountain pen ink review, written with a Lamy Al-Star on Tomoe River and Moleskine paper.
Pelikan Edelstein Aquamarine fountain pen ink review, written with a Lamy Al-Star on a Tomoe River paper.

Supplies Used:

Smear Test (Dry Time):
  • Medium- This ink has a pretty standard dry time. Under 30 seconds is by no means quick drying, but you should be ok to take notes with it and not worry about smudging when you turn the page.

Drip Test (Water Resistance):
  • Low- While this ink is a darker shade, it doesn't stand up to the drip test. The color stayed on the page but the lines disappeared. Look to another ink if you want staying power.

  • Medium- While there were definite fluctuations in color between the first and second swabs, there was no difference between the second and third.

Ease of Cleaning:
  • Easy- Although this ink has a darker shade, it washed easily off the nib for cleaning.

  • High- The shading in this ink is fantastic. Like some other similar teal ink, the color variation is fantastic. It looked especially good in the broad nib.

  • Medium- This ink has a great flow. No worries about hard starting here.

Unique Characteristics:
  • Special Edition- This is a limited run! Since it's their Ink of the Year, it won't be around forever.

Packaging and Aesthetics:
  • Beautiful 50ml bottle and box. Also available in Standard International Long Cartridges and 2ml ink samples. 
  • Bottle has a large opening making it easy to fill.
  • The box is beautifully designed and pleasant to look at.
Inks Similar in Color:

This ink is great! It's a tad darker than most other teal/turquoise inks I've tried, which makes it unique. I don't know if it is possible to have enough Turquoise ink-- they are all so different. And for the shading alone, I think this one is at least worth trying. Additionally, this ink is dark enough to pass muster at work but fun enough that you'll want to write with it. It would be great for taking notes in school or journaling.

You can find Pelikan Edelsetain Aquamarine at Gouletpens.com in a 50ml bottle for 27.50. Grab a pack of cartridges for $9.50 or a 2ml ink sample for $2.50.

Do you like turquoise ink? Which is your favorite? Leave a comment below and let me know!

Write on,

Thursday Things: Aquamarine

Neatly organized turquoise and aqua fountain pens, paper, and ink in a knolling style flatlay.

This week’s Thursday Things is swimming with inspiration. Aquamarine is the birthstone for those born in the month of March. This gem is known to possess a fascinatingly wide range of blue hues that mimic many aspects of nature’s beauty. We recently launched the new Pelikan Edelstein Aquamarine ink. It is a beautiful turquoise blue-green ink that reminds us of ocean waves and endless seas of cool, crisp water. Here are some of our favorite products that capture the beauty of all things aquamarine.

Featured products from left to right:

We've put together an Aquamarine themed shopping guide, which you can find here. 

Waterman Inspired Blue (50ml Bottled Ink) on a Leuchtturm Azure notebook.
Waterman Inspired Blue (50ml Bottled Ink)
Blue Karas Kustoms Fountain K Fountain Pen on a turquoise Rhodia notepad.
Karas Kustoms Fountain K Fountain Pen – Blue
Pelikan Edelstein Aquamarine (50ml Bottled Ink) with a writing sample next a Faber-Castell Loom fountain pen.
Pelikan Edelstein Aquamarine (50ml Bottled Ink)
Marbled Marianas Noodler’s Neponset Fountain Pen on an Azure Leuchtturm notebook.
Noodler’s Neponset Fountain Pen - Marbled Marianas
A pocket sized Filofax Aqua notebook with lined pages showing.
Filofax Pocket Notebook – Aqua
Blue Ocean Op Art Faber-Castell Ambition Fountain Pen on a pocket sized Filofax Aqua notebook.
Faber-Castell Ambition Fountain Pen - Blue Ocean Op Art
Neatly organized turquoise and aqua fountain pens, paper, and ink in a knolling style flatlay.

Do you have a favorite Aquamarine inspired fountain pen, ink or notebook?

Write on,
The Goulet Pen Company Team

Monday, March 28, 2016

Visconti Bordeaux with a Lamy Joy 1.9 Stub: Monday Matchup #88

Fountain pen illustration with Visconti Bordeaux ink using a Lamy Joy 1.9 Stub

Hey fountain pen aficionados! Sarah here, showing off my newest Monday Matchup creation. I paired a Lamy Joy 1.9mm nib fountain pen with Visconti Bordeaux ink. After doing a Monday Matchup in December with Visconti Blue, I really wanted to give another Visconti ink a try. Since the Blue ink was so juicy and wet, I wanted a nib that would really show off the deep red. The Lamy Joy with the 1.9mm nib didn't let me down!

I found the quote first and it served as inspiration for the piece. You can't go wrong with Flannery O'Connor! Despite writing with fountain pens daily, I have never actually tried to draw one. A writing quote to go with a writing instrument seemed perfect. I'm anticipating some backlash for drawing a Pilot nib with a Lamy Joy pen, but what can I say? The nib on the Pilot Custom 74 is gorgeous!

I took out my pencil to sketch the outline of the pen. I took the pen and did a basic outline of the nib. Dipping the tip of my brush pen in ink, I lightly laid out basic shapes to show the shadows on the nib. Next I took a syringe and filled it with some ink. Filling it more with a little bit of air, I used the syringe to squirt ink out onto the page below the nib. To make the ink blot larger, I gently blew on the ink to push it towards the edge of the paper. I set the paper aside for an hour to let it thoroughly dry.

Satisfied that it was dry enough, I came back with my pen in hand to add in all the details. I drew the detailed engraving on the nib. However, since the nib was so wide, it was hard to get all the intricate details. I used the brush pen to add in a some more layers of ink and then wrote the quote out on the page. I erased the pencil marks and was finished. 

This pen and ink were a wonderful match! The ink flowed steadily from the pen despite the fact that the nib was so large. Although the ink was wet, it dried decently fast. I wasn't worried about erasing the pencil marks and causing the ink to smear. The ink also had decent shading- not quite as much as I hoped for, but you can definitely see some variation. The fountain pen gave a crisp italic line and was well weighted.

This pen and ink would be fantastic for hand lettering artists or calligraphers. The wideness of the nib makes it impractical for every day use, however. It could be good for creating titles in journals or doing large works of art.

If I did this work again, I think that I'd make the drawing bigger and pick a longer quote. I really enjoyed writing with the pen and would have enjoyed writing more with it. A bigger drawing would make the details on the nib easier to draw since the nib was so wide.

Fountain pen illustration with Visconti Bordeaux ink using a Lamy Joy 1.9 Stub
Fountain pen illustration with Visconti Bordeaux ink using a Lamy Joy 1.9 Stub
Fountain pen illustration with Visconti Bordeaux ink using a Lamy Joy 1.9 Stub
Fountain pen illustration with Visconti Bordeaux ink using a Lamy Joy 1.9 Stub
Fountain pen illustration with Visconti Bordeaux ink using a Lamy Joy 1.9 Stub
Fountain pen illustration with Visconti Bordeaux ink using a Lamy Joy 1.9 Stub
Fountain pen illustration with Visconti Bordeaux ink using a Lamy Joy 1.9 Stub
Fountain pen illustration with Visconti Bordeaux ink using a Lamy Joy 1.9 Stub
Fountain pen illustration with Visconti Bordeaux ink using a Lamy Joy 1.9 Stub

You can find the Lamy Joy with a 1.9mm nib (or a few other sizes!) at Gouletpens.com. Visconti Bordeaux is available in a 40ml bottle for $17.50, a pack of cartridges for $6.90, or a 2ml ink sample for $1.50.

Want to win this pen and ink? Swing over to Instagram and enter our #MondayMatchupGiveaway contest. It goes from noon to noon every week on Monday to Tuesday.

Do you like writing or drawing with wide nibs? Let me know in the comments below!

Write on,

Friday, March 25, 2016

Goulet Q&A Episode 116, Open Forum

Goulet Q&A is now available as an audio podcast! Click here  for the RSS feed to use in your podcast app of choice, or click here for a direct download.

In this week’s Goulet Q&A, I talk about putting dip flex nibs in Jinhaos, how Snapchat is influencing the pen world, and what it’s like to build luxury pen brand relationships.

In the last week:
  • Lots of stomach bug hitting our team
  • good family time this weekend
  • Snapchat going strong, Insta going strong
  • Namiki and Filofax pushed out a bit
  • FedEx pushed out a bit
  • Been really aggressive on our timelines, stuff isn’t lining up perfectly so we’re having to adjust
  • Shooting a little early this week, Tuesday

New/Upcoming Products: - (2:44)

Pens/Writing - (7:22)

1) Apav5- YouTube - (7:24)
I'm kinda new to fountain pens and since I got my first pen I've written in cursive. I can write ok in cursive however I write super slow. Should I be embarrassed if I pull out a nice looking fountain pen for quick notes in class then start writing like a 3rd grader?
  • I’ve been there, don’t sweat it
  • Practice will help you a lot here, it likely won’t take you but a few weeks, a couple of months at most to see a noticeable difference in your writing speed and quality
  • other people really aren’t judging you about your writing like you think, anyway
  • even if they are, who cares. You write for you, writing is personal and if you enjoy it, enjoy it!

2) Hector L.- Blog - (10:16)
I'm curious if you have ever converted a Jinhao to a flex pen using a dip calligraphy nib before and if so what your experience was like? I just ordered an x450 and can't wait to start experimenting!
  • experimenting is the key word here
  • this is a hack, and with a variety of dip nibs out there it’s hard to say what your experience will be like
  • I’ve seen a number of pen reviewers out there like Stephen Brown and others do this hack
  • you might have to bend/alter the nib to fit, experiment a lot with ink/paper that works with it
  • I give strong words of “do at your own risk” here, as you’re voiding warranties all over the place
  • have fun though!

3) Hector L. Blog - (16:24)
I'm a writer and write stores in the same vein as Edgar Allan Poe and H.P. Lovecraft. I was just wondering what inks you would recommend to a "horror" writer?

4) Alex- Email - (18:13)
I love pens and would like a new fountain pen. I have been using a Pilot Petit and Lamy ABC but would like something fancier and was wondering what you would recommend. Here are the four things I am looking for in a fountain pen 1) can easily change nibs, 2) has the ability to use bottled ink, 3) fits well in my hand and 4) writes well as that is whole point of using a fountain pen :-)  I want to use it to practice my penmanship, write letters and record thoughts in my journal. Thank you, Alex, 8 years old PS.  I like the LEGO creations in your office.
  • I couldn’t help but answer an 8-yo pen and lego fan!
  • I would stick with Lamy here, a Safari, Al-Star, or maybe even a Logo
  • they will use the same nib as your ABC, look nice, lots of fun color options
  • the grips will be thinner, more like a pencil
  • the ABC comes with a nib that’s about equivalent to a medium nib, so go with EF if you want smaller or 1.1mm stub if you want bigger and fancier
  • Pilot’s Metropolitan is one of my favorites and you can swap the nibs between them, the Prera, Penmanship, and Plumix, but the nibs aren’t sold separately

Ink - (22:35)

5) Hank W.- Facebook - (22:36)
The Goulet Pen Co. "Glossary of Terms" page doesn't define sheen. But there's lots of types of sheen. Some sheen appears as complementary colours, others looks like it's 120 degrees off on the colour wheel; some sheen is where the ink pools most, other sheen shows up at the edges of the letterforms; and the current fad of inks with "shimmer" or "flecks" or whatnot... on its own that's not really sheen. Depending on who's doing ink reviews, terminology can be all over the place. Was GP thinking of stepping in and adding to the glossary, or are the definitions of ink properties too... um, fluid? smile emoticon
  • I’ll be darned, you’re right, I’ll have to work that in there
  • sheen does have a lot of meaning for different people
  • I looked to provide my own view on sheen in my blog post “Brian’s Top 10 Sheening Inks”: it could be sparkles like glitter, or a shiny color that happens in the areas where ink really pools up
  • Until recently, it was usually talking about sheen as in a shiny variance in color where the ink pooled up. with 1670 and Shimmertastic inks coming out, many people now view bright, sparkly glittery flare as sheen
  • I view it as both, and as much as I like to think I’m an authority in the pen world, I suspect that others will continue to call it whatever they want, just like when you call an ink waterproof or wet/dry

6) Kanak K.- Facebook - (25:05)
Okay this question might be a little silly. How do you fill in a pen from your ink vials? Especially the Karas Kustoms and Pilot 74. As in every drop of it?
  • Karas Kustoms is pretty easy, just fill directly into the converter
  • Custom 74 is a little tougher, it’s really hard to get a full fill with that button filler
  • an ink syringe will become really key here, that or using a different converter

Business - (34:06)

7) Myr Gyl (Gayle)- Facebook - (34:07)
Now that you have snapchat, do you feel like you get a more intimate/personal look at your consumer base watching what stories you can of your snapchat friends? Just wondering. I think it's totally cool for a retailer/owner of a company to be as accessible as you are. And I appreciate that you take the time to do it, since there are so many other things you can be doing with your time.
  • I’ve been active daily on Snapchat for just over a week now, I know, look at me
  • I have about 400 friends and recently broke a score of 1,000
  • I signed up for SC about a year ago, and just couldn’t wrap my head around it
  • I follow a lot of Gary Vaynerchuck and he’s been all over SC recently (getting about 30k views on his stories), I get just over 200
  • I’ve been reading his latest book #AskGaryVee and it just clicked with me, seeing the trend of Facebook, Instagram, and now Snapchat
  • I decided rather impulsively to read up on it a bit on Sunday, March 6th (for about an hour), then tweet out to the Goulet Nation to add me as a friend
  • As people friended me, I friended back and sent a personal message to each one of them, thanking them
  • As I used it, it took about 15 minutes for me to really ‘get it’, and I’ve been able to chat with fans all over the US, in Honduras, Norway, UK, Germany, and all over, instantly, personally, and easily
  • the stories feature is really cool, too, and does give me insight into what’s going on with folks
  • I can pop in on peoples’ stories, and snap at them with a response
  • I’ve always been into personal communication, almost to a fault
  • I walk the line of practicality in terms of trying to reply to everyone who takes the time to engage
  • SC allows me to do that in a way that is incredibly convenient
  • it’s overwhelmingly young people and newbies, who I so totally connect with and it keeps me grounded especially as we’re carrying higher and higher end pens. I need to stay grounded
  • Friend me on Snapchat as briangoulet

8) Kenneth C.- Facebook - (49:23)
After you finally worked things out with Visconti, I noticed that Montegrappa was soon to follow. Is the Visconti deal opening doors for you that were previously closed? Are other manufacturers showing signs of being more open to you as an online-only retailer? In other words, are you any closer to being able to sell Sailor???
  • Definitely, carrying one luxury brand starts to open the doors for others
  • this is no different than how it’s gone from the very beginning
  • there was a time when Lamy and Pilot didn’t want to sell to online only retailers, we had to advocate for them
  • we started with paper, and carried J. Herbin ink because it was brought into the US by the same distributor as Rhodia and Clairefontaine
  • We then picked up Pelikan b/c we carried J. Herbin, then Private Reserve, Diamine, and Noodler's
  • Noodler’s distributor also carried Platinum, which led to Preppys and Noodler’s pens (in the early days) our first pens
  • once we started carrying pens we got into Lamy, Pilot, and others, and it’s been history in the making since
  • Luxury brands like Visconti, Montegrappa, Mont-Blanc, Omas (RIP) and others are typically sold in higher end B&M stores like jewelry and watch stores, not always pen stores
  • they’re a few years behind the other brands in terms of selling online, so we’re fighting some of the same battles there as we were with Lamy and Pilot years ago
  • they’re coming around though, slowly but surely
  • Omas was distributed by Kenro, who also sells Montegrappa, Aurora, and (formerly) Sheaffer
  • we could always sell Montegrappa, but we didn’t have the brand recognition for it
  • we started the luxury pen line with Omas, and that went well which allowed us to convince Visconti to try us out, now Montegrappa wants to dance, though they’ve always had that on the table
  • Namiki is also in the works
  • sometimes it has to do with distributor/manufacturer relationships, sometimes it’s just us being ready and able to launch a new brand, often times it’s just demand we feel from customers that determine when the time is right for us to get into a new brand

QOTW: What brand of pens do we not carry at Goulet that you would really love to see us bring on? - (01:06:33)

Thanks so much for joining me this week! You can catch up on any old Q&A videos you missed here.

Write on, 
Brian Goulet

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Noodler's Apache Sunset: Ink Review

Noodler's Apache Sunset Ink Splatter

Hi everyone, Margaret here. This week's ink review features one of my all time favorite inks, Noodler's Apache Sunset. I was already a fan of this orange ink, and then I got to put it to the test with my Monday Matchup. The drastic range of color that you're able to achieve with this ink sets it apart from all other colors! You can already tell I love it, but let's dive deeper so I can show you more of Apache Sunset.

Noodler's Apache Sunset Fountain Pen Ink
Noodler's Apache Sunset Fountain Pen Ink on Tomoe River and Moleskine Paper
Noodler's Apache Sunset Ink Review on Tomoe River Paper

Supplies Used:

Smear Test (Dry Time):
  • Slow - This ink took some time to dry, but it wasn't a deal breaker for me. Just be careful to note that it could smear, so give it some time. 

Drip Test (Water Resistance):
  • Low -If you want a waterproof ink, I wouldn't recommend this one. Since it's already so light in color, water really made the ink disappear. However, I had great success using this ink with a brush pen and some water, so I'd recommend it for sketching or drawing because the different shades you're able to get are beautiful.

  • Medium/High- There's a slight change in color between swabs 1 and 3.

Ease of Cleaning:
  • Easy- No trouble cleaning this one of my pen. I think you could leave it inked up in a pen for a while, and have little to no trouble.

  • High -One of the best qualities of this ink is the incredible range of color! The shading is so gorgeous, and you can see the yellow to orange to red color in almost every letter you write.

  • Medium - This ink is super easy to write with because the flow really keeps up. It worked great with all of the different Lamy nibs that I used it with. (EF, F, M, B and 1.1mm)

Packaging and Aesthetics:
  • 3oz glass or plastic bottle (stock is mixed for now)
  • Bottle is pretty easy to fill from, especially if you try using an Ink Miser Intra-Bottle inkwell to help you use every last drop of ink!
Inks similar in color:

It's no secret that I love this ink. I think everyone should own at least a sample, if not a full bottle! What's amazing is that it looks awesome even in an extra fine nib, as well as a broad and flex nib too. Brian agrees and even included this ink in his top 7 shading inks! It may not be super practical for work, but I can see it being great for letter writing, sketching or note taking. Try it with different nibs and paper to see the different levels of shading that it offers.

Noodler's Apache Sunset Fountain Pen Ink
Noodler's Apache Sunset Fountain Pen Ink

You can find a 3oz bottle of Noodler's Apache Sunset available for $12.50 and a 2ml ink sample available for $1.25. You can also find it available in our most popular shading inks sample package set for $9.00

What do you think? Are you a fan of Noodler's Apache Sunset like I am?

Write on,

Thursday Things: Water Lily

Turquoise and pink fountain pens, paper, and ink neatly organized in a knolling flatlay

The release of the Edison Nouveau Spring Premiere Fountain Pen, the Water Lily, has put our entire team in the spring mood. This week's Thursday Things is a celebration of the bright and cheerful pink and turquoise featured on this magnificent limited edition pen. The cool turquoise on the pen is an unlikely but highly satisfying match for the sweet pink. This color pair is definitely reminiscent of the cool spring days that lie ahead of us in the coming weeks. 

Featured products from left to right:
Find these products in our Thursday Things shopping guide here
Original Crown Mill Turquoise Stationery
Original Crown Mill BiColor A5 Correspondence Set – White/Turquoise
Kaweco ICE Sport pink fountain pen
Kaweco Ice Sport Fountain Pen - Pink
Delta Unica Fuscia on a Leuchtturm Emerald hardcover notebook
Delta Unica Fountain Pen – Fuscia
Goulet exclusive Edison Nouveau Premiere fountain pen with Leuchtturm pink notebook
Edison Nouveau Premiere Fountain Pen – Water Lily
New Pink and Emerald Leuchtturm hardcover notebooks
Leuchtturm Medium A5 Notebooks
Pilot Metropolitan Retro Pop turquoise fountain pen on a turquoise notebook
Pilot Metropolitan Retro Pop Fountain Pen – Turquoise
Turquoise and pink fountain pens, paper, and ink neatly organized in a knolling flatlay

Would you pair a pink or turquoise ink with the Edison Nouveau Water Lily?

Write on,
The Goulet Pen Company Team

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Edison Nouveau Premiere Water Lily Spring 2016 SE Fountain Pen

The sun is shining here in Virginia. Trees are blossoming and the very first daffodils are sprouting up sunny yellow. It's Spring, and what better way to celebrate the season than a new pen? We're happy to announce the newest Edison Nouveau Premiere, Water Lily! Swirls of aqua and magenta create a serene and hypnotic combination while the smooth Edison nib will have you floating across the page. Let your writing bloom along with the season by adding this pen to your collection!

This is the 10th Seasonal Edition of our Edison Nouveau Premiere collection. We've had some memorable Spring editions (who could forget the Lilac or Cherry Blossom?), but this one is a particular favorite. While this acrylic color combination has been done before in different body types, this is the first Nouveau Premiere of this kind.

Edison Nouveau Premiere Water Lily Fountain Pen

Affectionately called the "unicorn barf pen" by the fountain pen community, this pen will only be available for about 3 months, or until supplies run out. This fountain pen comes in a gorgeous box with a standard international converter. The slightly translucent cast resin material shows the ink level (especially in eyedropper mode). It will be darker at the grip section because of the nib housing unit and the translucent material, and you might see ink in the grip, too, so don't be alarmed.

The nibs are available with EF, F, M, B, 1.1mm, and 1.5mm stainless steel polished Edison nibs made by Jowo in Germany that are smooth with a hint of feedback. The nibs are interchangeable and additional ones are sold individually for $25. You can also upgrade to an 18k nib for an additional $125. Here is a video on Changing Edison Nibs, to help you swap them out.
Writing sample using the 10 optional fountain pen nib sizes from extra-fine steel to 18k broad.

Edison Nouveau Premiere Water Lily Fountain Pen

Looking for some matching ink? These colors were hand selected by Brian and Rachel Goulet!

Fountain Pen Ink
Diamine Soft Mint

Fountain Pen Ink
Diamine Marine
Fountain Pen Ink
J. Herbin Diablo Menthe

fountain pen ink
Pilot Iroshizuku Tsutsuji - Azalea
Fountain Pen ink
Pilot Iroshizuku Kosumosu

Fountain Pen Ink
Diamine Hope Pink

The Spring 2016 Edison Nouveau Premiere Water Lily Special Edition is now available at Gouletpens.com for $149. You can find more details and all of the technical specs on our website.

Edison Nouveau Premiere Water Lily Fountain Pen

What do you think of the Water Lily? Is it a must-have for you?

Write on,
The Goulet Pen Company Team

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