Friday, April 28, 2017

Caran d'Ache 849 Series Fountain Pen

If you are a fan of Caran d'Ache chances are you already own a 849 ballpoint pen.  They have been extremely popular pens since the 1960s with good reason. Swiss made, hexagonal shape, and well made, the 849's have a great reputation.

 Caran d'Ache has expanded its popular 849 collection to now include a fountain pen.   The Caran d'ache 849 fountain pen has the same hexagonal shape found on the emblematic collection. On the fountain pen the design has a streamlined linear design with a slight more rounding than found on the ballpoint version of the pen for a contemporary and causal look.

Each Caran d'ache 849 fountain pen is made of aluminum for a durable pen that resists impacts and lasts. Fitted with a stainless steel nib and compatible with Chromatics cartridges, and standard international ink cartridge Available in a wide assortment of bright vibrant colors- neon pink, green, orange, and yellow, matte blue and black and white.

So what do you think? Will the 849 fountain pens be as popular as their ballpoint pens?  What color do you like best? Let us know in the comments below.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Rosetta Quattro 4-in-1 Multi-function Pen

The classic multi-function pen is a great tool for home or office. For those who alternate between writing in pen and and pencil, or regularly switch pen colors when illustrating, editing, or taking notes, the multi-function pen is a must have.  Perfect for travel so you have one tool for all your needs, multi pens are the way to go.  We think our new Rosetta Quattro Multi-function pen is the best multi-function on the market for the price.

Our new Rosetta Quattro 4 Function pen features an all metal barrel. Choose from two different finishes - matte black or satin silver, both with silver trim. The diamond-cut knurled grip provides increased writing control and comfort.

Quattro has 4 different points- black, red, and blue medium ballpoint and 0.5 mm pencil. 

To activate each point, hold pen parallel to your desk top and turn the barrel so that the desired point is at the top then simply press the cap.

It's very easy to refill the Rosetta Quattro because it uses the standard international "D1" mini size ballpoint refill (inexpensive and readily available here) and .5 mm leads.  The eraser is under the cap and the instruction sheet is included with the pen.

The Rosetta Quattro is available for only $17.97- and it's the best quality multi function pen for that price on the market. Have you tried the Rosetta Quattro? Let us know what you think in the comments below!

Monday, March 6, 2017

Try Out Hand Lettering- Tombow Lettering Essentials Sets REVIEW

Just when you hear that schools are doing away with handwriting programs and offices are going paperless, hand lettering seems to be everywhere. From the chalk menu board at your favorite coffee shop to advertising in magazines to invitations to parties, a huge variety of fonts and scripts are being used in all sorts of creative ways. The hand lettering trend has been around for a couple of years now, and it shows no signs of going anywhere!

This is great news for folks who are interested in trying out this wonderful hobby.  I've written before of the benefits of coloring (find that blog here). Hand lettering is also very cathartic and beneficial! It heightens awareness, concentration, and allows you to live in the moment. Hand lettering isn't just for the naturally talented artistic types. Tombow has created two lettering essential sets- a Beginner and Advanced Lettering set- that includes everything you need to start hand lettering.

The Beginner Lettering Set: The beginner set includes a pencil, eraser, 2 dual tip lettering brushes, a calligraphy pen, and a dual tip permanent marker.

The beginner kit is basic- but good for getting acquainted with the tools before investing a lot of money into a new hobby.  This set will get you started for under $20.  What's included?

  • Two Dual Brush pens in black and gray. They have a flexible brush tip for big, bold letters and a fine bullet tip for details.

  • Fudenosuke Calligraphy pen- a fine tip calligraphy brush pen with an elastomer tip that can create varied line widths by simply changing brush pressure. Developed for delicate Kanji/Chinese characters, this pen is perfect for modern calligraphy and hand lettering.

  • The Mono Twin permanent marker has a bullet tip and a fine point tip. Great for finishing touches and outlining your letters.

  • Mono drawing pencil (4H) for sketching and drawing guidelines.

  • The mono eraser is a smudge-proof eraser for removing pencil lines.

If you think that you'd like a little color for trying out lettering, then The Advanced Lettering Set  includes a few more items.

The "Advanced Set" includes dual brush pens in 3 colors, an extra calligraphy pen, and an instructional pamphlet. For under $30 you get a nice set.

Extra brush pens in 3 more colors-

  • Deep Magenta (685) 
  • Sea Blue (373) 
  • Black (N15)
  • Cherry (815) 
  • Colorless Blender marker (N00). The blending marker allows you to blend colors directly on your paper, or pick up colors using a blending pallet.

The instructional pamphlet and the extra calligraphy pen

  • Extra calligraphy pen. 
Check out this video for using the blending marker:

Click on this link for a pdf version of Tombow's Lettering Practice Worksheet.

Besides the great resources at Tombow, there is also a huge amount of script fonts available with new fonts being released all the time. You can find some here.  Does this make you want to try out hand lettering?  Let us know in the comments!

Friday, March 3, 2017

Rhodiarama Soft Cover Notebook Review

Rhodia has long been a favorite brand of fountain pen lovers, with great reason! They use Clairefontaine paper- the smoothest paper in the world. Rhodia really knows how to make a notebook and the softcover doesn't disappoint.

The cover is made from Italian leatherette that has a soft tactile feel to it. The cover has the Rhodia logo on it, embossed into the cover which is thin and flexible. It comes in 15 fabulous colors!

Inside, you'll find ivory colored paper. This feature can be a downside to some that want to see the true color of their ink on paper- the ivory color will cast a warm shade to your ink.

As usual it is very smooth and fountain pen friendly 90 gsm Clairefontaine paper.  You can write on both sides of the paper without feathering or bleed through.  The paper is pH neutral, acid free and PEFC certified.  The paper comes lined or dot.  It's great for bullet journaling.  The lines and dots are light grey- dots are 5 mm spaced and lines are 7 mm apart.

There is an orange ribbon bookmark, and the signature rhodia orange elastic closure.  In the front and back of the journal end-covers are signature Rhodia orange. Inside the back cover is a pocket! This is a great notebook and we highly recommend it here at iPenstore!

Friday, February 17, 2017


Kill Winter with Orange!  This February we chose to go with an orange theme for our popular iPenBox- inspired by our friend @RandomThinks on Instagram to celebrate his annual #KillWinterwithOrange tribute, and we are really getting into the spirit of it!  

When you live in the Midwest, winter really gets old this time of year.  We experience winter conditions here in Michigan starting in October and winter conditions tend to stick around here some years through April.  Needless to say, by February we are feeling DONE with it. We are hardy Michiganders, so we press on, and #KillWinterWithOrange helps to brighten our outlook!

To celebrate #Killwinterwithorange, we picked out some of our favorite ORANGE PRODUCTS here at iPenstore- scroll down and enjoy!

Products featured in this photo:

Pens/ Pencils: 

Our compact Napoleon pocket ballpoint pen also comes in rollerball! When capped the pen is 4-1/2 inches to easily fit in a pocket or purse. Posted the Napoleon is a full sized 5-1/2 inches. 

Rosetta Pencil Extender, Worther 3.15mm lead in orange, Worther Shorty Mechanical Pencil, Kaweco Ice Sport 0.7 mm Pencil

Our Rosetta Pencil Extender comes in a cheerful yellow orange with silver diamond-cut knurled grip.  Need a mechanical pencil? Worther Shorty makes a chunky sketch pencil that holds a 3.15 mm lead in all colors of the rainbow. 

The Kaweco Ice Sport translucent mechanical pencil has an octagonal barrel- its compact size and 1/2 barrel feels just right in your hand. 

Are you looking for a beautiful orange ink that glows like the sunset over the Caribbean Sea?  Look no further than Pilot Iroshizuku Yu-Yake.  Energetic and cheerful, this ink is known for its amazing shading from a dark orange to a bright yellow. 

The Jinhao 159 is a large fountain pen that consistently gets great reviews from users. It's an extremely affordable pen at under $10 and a great choice for a beginner's fountain pen.