ink cartridges

J. Herbin Lie de The Ink Review

J. Herbins Lie de The has changed the way I feel about brown ink. Before using this ink I didn’t understand why you would buy a brown ink when there were so many other colours available to use. However after browsing around on Instagram I kept seeing a brown ink that caught my eye. I eventually tracked it down to be J. Herbins Lie de The and decided I had to try it out for myself. It's now become one of my favourite inks to use for a variety of reasons.

My first foray into J. Harbin ink.

Lie de The is the first J. Herbin ink I have used. Prior to this I have generally stuck to Diamine and Pilot Iroshizuku ink because I have enjoyed using them and found numerous ink colours that I wanted to try. I had heard good things about J. Herbin inks and as this brown kept catching my eye I bought a pack of the ink cartridges to use in my Kaweco ART Sport fountain pen.

Cool packaging.

The packaging for these ink cartridges is different from anything else I have seen from other brands. You get a nice little metal container which houses your six ink cartridges. The containers have a colour coded lid relating to the ink colour inside, which is very handy when it sits in your draw and you need to find a replacement cartridge quickly. This style of packaging provides more protection to the ink cartridges than the standard card containers used by most other brands. Once I have used up this first batch I will recycle the packaging and house lose ink cartridges I have lying around.

J. Herbin packaging  

J. Herbin packaging  

A gorgeous and fun ink to use.

I have really enjoyed using this ink colour. The ink is wet, I would say wetter than other ink brands I have used. I haven’t run a technical timed test but I have noticed that I need to wait a fraction longer for the ink to dry on the page.

The shading is gorgeous! You get some real contrasts in the colours from almost a light golden brown through to a real dark oaky brown. I use this ink for long form writing and journaling and a full page of written words in this ink colour is a beautiful thing. It is partly because of how good this ink looks on the page that makes me like it so much. I will definitely be investing in a bottle rather than just cartridges so I can use this in a range of other fountain pens.

Hand written review  

Hand written review  

Overall thoughts.

Lie de The has done a number of things for me. Firstly it has made me look at brown inks differently. Part of me wants to try other brown inks, but the other side of me thinks…why bother! This ink is just too good. Secondly it has made me want to explore the J.Herbin ink line a little more. They have so many lovely colours available (Bleu Nuit is next on my list) and if they look and perform anything like Lie de The I may have a new favourite ink brand on my hands.

Lamy Dark Lilac Ink Review

The Lamy Dark Lilac T-10 ink cartridges and my Lamy Safari 

The Lamy Dark Lilac T-10 ink cartridges and my Lamy Safari 

The Lamy Dark Lilac ink is part of the 2016 limited edition Lamy range. This fountain pen ink has been reviewed a tonne and has been very popular with stores selling out their inventory really quickly.

I opted for a pack of five T-10 cartridges to use with my Lamy Safari fountain pen. I chose cartridges as I wasn’t sure whether this would be an ink I was going to like and I am trying to buy stationery items I will use (see here for more details on this). I was also mindful that I have numerous bottles of ink that I am making no headway in depleting therefore felt cartridges would suffice.

The Lamy Dark Lilac colour is really lovely. I personally enjoy purple inks, which was part of the initial attraction and the Lamy Dark Lilac is a real purple. It has some gorgeous shading which is really prominent on high quality paper stock. You can even see some gold sheen with the Midori and Tomoe River paper.

A sample page from my Travelers Notebook using Lamy Dark Lilac 

A sample page from my Travelers Notebook using Lamy Dark Lilac 

I have found that the ink behaves well. You get a nice flow in the fountain pen and it’s a wet ink which helps to get the gold sheen even with a fine nib fountain pen. As it’s a dark shade of purple you can easily use this as an everyday ink option.

A comparison against some of my favourite purple inks

A comparison against some of my favourite purple inks

If you have a chance to try this ink out and enjoy purple inks I would highly recommend it. This is my first foray into a Lamy ink outside of the standard black T-10 cartridges and I am really impressed. I think this is a true purple ink that doesn’t have too much of another colour included as you can see with the J. Herbin and Diamine samples in the above photo. Lamy have found a way to make a simple lilac ink interesting without deviating too much from the base colour.

Diamine Woodland Green Review

Diamine is always a solid choice for fountain pen ink and one of my favourite ink brands. They offer loads of different colours and are really well priced.  

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I came across Diamine Woodland Green as part of a Diamine assorted pack of ink cartridges. Woodland Green was part of the Floral pack with lots of lovely bright shades including Orange, Passion Red, Mediterranean Blue and Turquoise. I bought the assorted pack to try several different ink colours that perhaps normally I would not have chosen. Woodland Green was one of the brilliant finds. 

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I have always struggled to find a green ink that I wanted to try. It has to be dark enough to be legible on the page and easily visible for the partially sighted such as myself. Diamine's Woodland Green fits this bill well. It's a lovely dark green ink colour that has some gorgeous shading.

I have used this in cartridge format only predominantly in my Kaweco AL Sport. Even with the fine line of Kaweco AL Sport you can see some of the shading present in Woodland Green. You get a traditional bright green colour in the lighter tones and then the darker tones look almost emerald. 

As with many other Diamine inks I have used the flow on this ink is great. It's a nice wet ink and I have never had any issues with skipping. 

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Some traces of Woodland Green on my desk

Some traces of Woodland Green on my desk

If you like green inks this a must for your collection. If you've never used a green ink I think it's a great starting point. The name of this ink is very apt, it reminds me of the woodland areas where I live. 

Unfortunately I don't have many other green inks to compare this to, but I am very glad I went with this green colour option. It's beautifully bright and bold. 

Diamine Turquoise: A drop in the ocean

I am becoming a big fan of Diamine inks for a variety of reasons. Firstly the wide range of colours available are really very good. Secondly there are a variety of refill options available, from cartridges, through to 50ml ink bottles. I have been using the Diamine cartridges in my Kaweco Sport fountain pens and the small 30ml bottled ink to try out interesting colours for any piston filled fountain pens I own. But lastly the Dimaine inks are affordable. All of these benefits allow you to experiment more with a broad range of ink colours, with very little risk. 

To drool over the full range of Diamine ink options available take a look here, or on the Diamine site. 

I recently bought the Diamine Floral ink assortment pack to test a range of different colours that I would not have specifically bought, and the Diamine Turquoise is one such example. Blues are generally not a colour I seek out when looking at fountain pen ink. They remind me of being at school and forced to use either a blue or black ink. But the Diamine Turquoise is actually pretty nice.

Santorini, Greece

Santorini, Greece

It is a summery colour that stirs up images of the ocean, almost like photos of the Greek Islands with the crisp blue sky and a clear blue sea. Its bright blue tones are calming and very different to what I would normally choose.  

My ink review shows the great shading you see with this ink. I used this with a medium nib Kaweco Sport and you really notice the light and dark shades that it holds. The light blue is really bright and fresh and then you get a hint at the darker shade of turquoise. 

The Diamine assortment packs are a great way to try out a range of different colours. I have found that the turquoise makes a great change to my normal ink choices and proves to me that every once in a while you should try something that normally you wouldn't in the pen world.   

I am not sure if this will become a regular ink choice for me but for the time being I am enjoying the change.