Pilot Coleto

Zebra Sarasa Clip 0.5mm Review

For some reason it had taken me up until a month ago to buy a Zebra Sarasa Clip gel ink pen. I had heard good things about this gel pen on numerous occasions but I never felt compelled to try one for myself. Recently I threw one into my shopping cart when buying some other items and I am really pleased that I did as this gel pen is amazing!!

I actually think it's become my favourite gel ink pen. Usually I would sway towards the Pilot Hi-Tec-C or G-Tec-C4 as my go to gel ink pen. I could use these pens in their standard barrel or add them into a number of different machined pens and they wrote well. I am also a fan of the Pilot Coleto multi pen due to the number of available colours and the quality of the gel ink.

But, the Pilot gel pens may have been knocked off their perch. I really like the Zebra Sarasa Clip and I am kinda fond of it in its standard off the shelf format.

The Zebra Sarasa Clip Particulars

The Zebra Sarasa Clip grip section

The Zebra Sarasa Clip grip section

The Sarasa Clip comes in a standard plastic barrel that you get with many gel pens and a nice rubber grip section. Usually I am not a fan of rubber grips. They can be comfortable but they can also be tacky, sticky and leave your fingers with a strange rubber smell on them. Pilot Juice I am looking at you! But the Sarasa Clip doesn't have any of that. It feels nice, isn't tacky and has some grooves that don't imprint on your fingers. The rubber grip also feels comfortable for long periods of writing.

A good, strong spring loaded clip

A good, strong spring loaded clip

The pen gets its name from the spring loaded clip which makes it easy to clip onto things. Usually I don't bother with a pen clip as I don't attach these to a shirt pocket, being a girl. However I have found it useful clipping it to things in my bag, or onto the outside of my Travelers Notebook.

My Sarasa Clip attached to my Travelers Notebook

My Sarasa Clip attached to my Travelers Notebook

So how does it write?

Gel pens are usually good writers and the Sarasa Clip is no different. I have been using it in lots of different notebooks and its writes smoothly in all of them. It doesn't need any time to warm up and get going, another gripe I do have with the Pilot gel pens which you can see in my hand written review below. The Sarasa Clip just goes. I have the 0.5mm and I really like the fine line width. Sometimes a 0.3mm or 0.38mm gel pen can feel a bit scratchy and you can get some skipping issues, but the 0.5mm Sarasa Clip doesn't suffer from their problem at all.

Final Thoughts

If it isn't clear already I really really like this gel pen. At the moment I have only one, the black 0.5mm, but I will definitely be getting more. A big selling point for me here in the UK is that these are obtainable. Pilot has so many issues around the distribution of their products that gel ink pens such as the Pilot Juice have been discontinued. But I know I can get hold of the Sarasa Clip in a range of colours - bonus!

They are the perfect gel pen to carry around. I need to figure out what other pens I can use the refill in if I want to be a bit posh, but on its own, writing with the standard Sarasa Clip barrel is nice. I just cannot believe it has taken me this long to even try this pen! I have been missing out.

Stationery Travel Kit - Isle of Wight

This weekend as you read this post I will be taking a weekend break to the Isle of Wight, a small island on the south coast of England. Of course being a stationery addict I am taking a number of stationery items with me, which I will detail out in today’s post. So grab a tea and croissant and read on.


First and foremost I need the right paper tools. This comes in the form of my Travelers Notebook which includes three inserts and my Raydori which also includes three inserts.

My Travelers Notebook is for reflective evening writing. In here I have my weekly refill where I note down something interesting from the day. I also have a blank notebook which is used for travel journalling. I use this whenever I go away somewhere and I make notes on what I have seen and done.

In my Raydori I have two pocket notebooks and a monthly view planner. This is part of my standard carry and comes with me always and this trip is no exception.

Writing Tools

To accompany the paper items I have with me a number of writing implements, obviously. I have two Pilot Coleto pens for general note taking. I love the Coleto 0.4mm refills and I have multiple colours in two pens with me at all times. I have the Kuretake Cocoiro Zig Letter Pen in black, my Ateleia Brass Pen with a Pilot Hi-Tec-C 0.4mm black refill and a Stabilo Point 88 fineliner in grey.

Doodling Tools

I have the Uni-Pin in 0.2 and 0.3mm which is used for drawing / doodling purposes. I have the Kuretake water brush pen with the detailer tip. I plan to use this for painting, either on the move or later on reflectively. Either way the Kuretake water brush pen is very convenient to use when travelling. I have my travel Winsor and Newton watercolour set and a range of Blackwing pencils for drawing or outlining something I want to paint. Watercolour paints are not normally part of my travelling kit however I have been inspired by Wei Taillandier on YouTube and this year I am trying to start a habit of drawing and painting.

Hightide Pen Roll

The contents of all this goodness can be found in my new Hightide pen roll which is a recent addition this week. After reading the following interview with Pocket Notebooks featuring Priya from The London Parchment my eye caught the Hightide pen roll and I had to give it a go myself. I also went for the bold yellow. I figured it looks good and should be easier to spot in my bag.

Sandqvist Stig Backpack

I will have all of these items in my trusty backpack whilst roaming (weather dependent) around the Isle of Wight.

Final thoughts

As I am only away for two nights this travel kit gives me everything I need. The addition this time round includes some very basic painting tools. This year I wanted to learn how to paint and draw so whilst travelling I will have both time and hopefully some inspiration. It’s also a great way to record and remember the areas I have visited.

February 2016 Loadout

I haven't done a loadout post since December 2015. As before I have broken my loadout into groups to make some sense of the choas. I really enjoy using a variety of different products and sometimes you need to find the right stationery pairings. 

personal loadout

My two Midori Travelers Notebooks and an array of pens

My two Midori Travelers Notebooks and an array of pens

Regular Midori Travelers Notebook - I now have two of these beautiful notebooks. My Blue Travelers Notebook holds my weekly refill where I try and be a little bit creative recording my days and practicing lettering. I also have a ruled refill in this notebook. I recently added the orange elastic that comes with the brown Travelers Notebook after Wonderpens recent post. I love the contrast of the orange against the blue. 

My second Travelers Notebook holds everything to do with The Finer Point. I have a monthly calendar where I keep on top of everything I need to do with my blog and also track my study schedule. My second refill is a blog brain dump refill. 

Midori MD A5 Ruled Notebook - this acts as my extended journal. When I need more space to write, this is the notebook I use. I love this notebook as it lies flat and it handles fountain pen ink really well. 

Hobonichi Techo - I continue to enjoy using this little book even after a year. I am still using this to record my days and this year I am including a little photo from my day.

Pilot Hi-Tec-C - I use a selection of these gel pens in my Travelers Notebook. I have a combination of sizes including the 0.4mm and 0.5mm. I am using the black, brown, violet and cherry pink colours and at the moment two of these refills are loaded up in my Karas Kustoms Render K and the Ateleia Brass Pen

Sakura Pigma Micron 03 - I use this pen for doodling and lettering in my Travelers Notebook. I have been trying lots of different fine liner pens lately. I love the way they write and they are so durable. 

My Hobonichi Techo and the fountain pens I use most

My Hobonichi Techo and the fountain pens I use most

TWSBI 580 RB - I have this inked up with Pilot Iroshizuku Tsutsuji-Azaela. I love the vibrant pink colour of this ink and by using this in a demonstrator pen I get to enjoy the colour even when not writing. 

Karask Kustoms Ink - I have this fountain pen inked up with the Pilot Iroshizuku Fuyu-gaki. This bright orange adds a nice pop of colour to my notes. The Ink has a fine line which is actually fairly bold and means I get to enjoy a nice thick line of orange on the page. 

Lamy AL Star Copper Orange - I have this inked up with the Lamy Black T-10 ink cartridge. I quite like having a plain black ink in one fountain pen. 

Lamy Safari - This is inked up with the Pilot Iroshizuku Ku-Jaku an ink I have found myself enjoying again and again. 

Pilot Kakuno - This is inked up with the Pilot Iroshizuku Ama-Iro. This is a new ink I received for Christmas and I love the light blue colour.

Pilot Metropolitan - I have this fountain pen inked up with Pilot Iroshizuku Shin-Kai. I love the super fine line on the Pilot Metropolitan and with Shin-Kai it makes a great writing partnership. I think this is my favourite low cost fountain pen that looks and feels great to write with.

The Carry around 

Passport sized Travelers Notebook - This holds my personal monthly view calendar and a ruled notebook. This is the notebook that I carry with me on a daily basis and where I dump anything that pops into my head.

School loadout

Field Notes Kraft, ruled notebook - This is being used to take notes on my design course and while I have loads of different colours editions available I thought I would go back to basics and go with the original. 

Pilot Coleto - I have an aqua blue, green, orange and cherry pink refill in this pen. This is a great pen for school work as I can have 4 different colours to hand, in one pen making note taking a breeze. 

Staedtler Tradition H - I use this for any doodles or outlines I need to make as part of my course. Staedtler pencils write really well and they look great.

Work loadout

Word Blue Mountain notebook - I loved the design and the colour of these notebooks. This is the first Word Notebook I have tried and I have been using this for my work to do lists. 

Blackwing pencils - I use these a lot for taking notes at work. Pencils work so well in the Word notebooks which gives me a perfect excuse to increase my pencil use. I have added an orange eraser into my 602 for something a little bit different.

Caran d'Ache Edelweiss F - a simple pencil but one that I really enjoy using. This pencil matches my Blue Mountain notebook quite well too. 

Tombow Mono 100 - This was one of the first pencils I bought. The Mono 100 looks great and writes so smoothly. 

Staedtler Wopex - There is something strange about these pencils and the waxy barrel can be a little bit odd, but for some reason I quite like it. 

Loadout thoughts

Every time I prep for one of these posts I am always a little bit surprised by how much stationery I use on a daily basis! My loadout shows that I like using Japanese stationery and Midori has become my go to paper product over the past few months. I like the design of their stationery and the way the paper handles an array of different pens. 

As always I'd love to hear about what you're using and what are your favourite must have items. 

December Loadout

It has been some time since I have done a loadout post, but for December I thought I would update you all with the tools I am using. This time round I have broken my loadout down into a series of mini loadouts as there can be a lot of variation in what I use, depending on where I am using it.  

Personal Loadout  

MTN - this remains my constant and has been for some months. In here I have one insert for general notes, the free weekly planner and a month planner. I really enjoy using this set-up and having everything all in one place. I am now in a position where I would be lost without the MTN.  

Hobonichi Techo - I am still using my Hobonichi, however since introducing the MTN into my set-up I have not been as loyal to the Techo. With this in mind I am working through some ideas about how to use my Techo next year as there will definitely need to be some changes here. 

The main line up

The main line up

Gel pens - I have been using the Pilot Hi-Tec-05, G-Tec-C4 and Coleto mostly with my MTN. I love the colour options available and the Pilot gel pens perform consistently well.  

Pencils - I have been and will continue to use my Palomino Blackwing 211 and Faber Castell 9000 HB. These are two of my favourite pencils at the moment and I regularly grab these for scribbling down notes or to do lists. 

Fountain pens - The Lamy AL Star, Karas Kustoms Ink, Kaweco AL Sport and Pilot Kakuno are all in my rotation this month. I really enjoy using these fountain pens and each one offers up something slightly different. 

Other things I am playing with  

Baron Fig Apprentice - Before starting this notebook I had never used the small Apprentice notebook from Baron Fig. I have started using this to try out different pencils as the paper handles graphite really well. This notebook is for doodling and taking notes about pencils. It is used rarely but sits by my desk so its easy to grab when I want to test something out. 

Pencils - some of the pencils I have enjoyed with this notebook are the Palomino Blackwing - a pencil that I didn't think was one for me but when used for doodling I really like it. Also I have been testing out General's Kimberly F and General's Semi-Hex.  

Studying Loadout

Field Notes Shenandoah edition - Currently I am using the Red Maple Shenandoah notebook for taking notes. This notebook looks a lot like the Kraft edition but you have a very bold, blood red pop of colour on the inside. Once this book is complete I will be moving over to one of the new Snowblind notebooks.  

Pilot Coleto - paired with this I have 2 Pilot Coleto gel pens with a number of different colours. One is a recent acquisition from a very generous, fellow pen addict who gifted me the pen as he was no longer using it. I like these pens for notetaking as it's easy to switch colours whilst scribbling down notes with minimal fuss. I tend to tear through the refills, which in the UK are becoming harder and harder to get. 

Work Loadout  

Rhodia Bloc No 14 - my work notes are pretty much to do lists and the Rhodia Bloc No 14 is the perfect to do list size. It's great for work as once my to do list is done I can easily rip out and discard the page. The Rhodia paper is super smooth and more suited to fountain pens, but I find the dark grid lines distracting and hard to read from. Therefore I have taken to using pencils in this notebook. 

A selection of pencils - Not only does the graphite stand out on the Rhodia's crazy dark grid but they're perfect for writing down quick notes. I have been using the Palomino Blackwing 211, General's Kimberly F, Mitsu-bishi 9000 HB and Tombow 8900 HB.

Closing Thoughts 

December has become pencil heavy and has seen the re-introduction of gel pen use in my life. Fountain pens are still my one true love but sometimes you just need a simple, but nice gel pen.