National Pencil Day was a few days ago, and to celebrate, I’m giving away a dozen of one of the best pencils on the market: The Blackwing 602. It is the perfect combination of smooth and dark, plus has great point retention. If you have tried them you know how great they are, and if you haven’t, now is your chance. I’m giving away a dozen to one lucky reader, so read the rules below and enter away!
I thought I would do something fun to wrap up what has been an amazing 2015. These are the products I got the most enjoyment out of this year. They didn't have to be new this year, just goods that I used and loved and stood out in a very crowded desk. Some of the products are mainstream, some are one of a kind, and all are loved. By me!
The pencil revolution has always been televised, I just wasn’t tuned into the right channel. That changed in the past year or two as I dug deeper into woodcase pencil scene and listened and learned to my friends at the Erasable Podcast. The Blackwing 602 was one of the first that I tried years ago, then fell by the wayside when I discovered the Tombow Mono 100. Something changed this year (was it the orange erasers?) and I couldn’t put the 602 down.
Rhodia Ice Pads
Paper draws the short end of the stick around here for some reason, and I need to try and review more in 2016. A handful of brands live on my desk at any time, and all are in use in some way, shape, or form. Rhodia dominates though, and the design of the Ice Pads are my favorite. Hopefully these become a mainstay of the product line.
Montblanc JFK Ink
It’s not a shock that a blue black ink is one of my favorite products of the year, but it is a surprise - even to me - that it is from Montblanc. JFK is a fantastic navy blue that looks great and performs exceptionally. I never have an issue with it in any pen, and I’ve used it in many. The only kicker is it is a limited edition, so these two bottles are going to have to last me for a while.
Edison Pearl G10 Orange
The first completely unfair item on this list is the Edison Pearl G10 in orange that I purchased at the DC Pen Show in August. It is a one of a kind prototype, made by Brian Gray to see how the G10 material performed as a pen barrel. One orange and one black were for sale, and it was all I could do to not buy both. It was expensive, but this is the best pen I bought in 2015.
This one may be a bit unfair as well, as I received a pre-release prototype of the Pen Type-B from CW&T during their Kickstarter launch. They were available to everyone though, but haven’t arrived in mailboxes yet. I’m in love with this pen and it rarely leaves my pen case. It reminded me how much I love the 0.3 mm Pilot Hi-Tec-C too.
Karas Kustoms Ink v2
I was all about the original Karas Kustoms Ink when it launched, even option for a second one in the famed Iron Man colorway. Karas upped their game with version 2 of the Ink, giving it a hooded nib design and switching over to Bock nibs. I’ve only had this pen for a month or so but it is already a mainstay.
I used a ton of products in 2015, and many more desrved to make this list. These rose to the top of the unofficial usage charts. For 2016, how about official usage charts! I’ll plan on doing that and see how it goes.
What were your favorite produts you used in 2015?
I get asked for pen, pencil, and paper recommendations all of the time so I wanted to put together a list that might help you out this holiday season. All of the products listed below are items I own and use frequently, so I can give them my highest personal recommendation.
If you are looking for something specific that is not covered in this list feel free to leave a comment below. Happy Holidays!
This fountain pen provides one of the most pleasant writing experiences in recent memory. I didn’t know what to expect when I first used it, but I haven’t stopped being fascinated by it yet. The aluminum body construction it top notch, and the fine nib is as smooth as it gets. (review)
Many of us were not able to know and love the original Blackwing 602 pencil. The brand was brought back to life over the past year and has turned me into a woodcase pencil fan. Even the most hardcore pen geek will appreciate these. (review)
Paper is a big deal to me and Doane Paper is far and away my favorite. My all-day, every-day notebook of choice is the Idea Journal. It has a permanent home on my work desk and packs up easily in my backpack for when I want to work outside of the house. The quality is unparalleled.
Is this the best gel ink pen on the market? Your won’t get much of an argument from me. The lines are clean and sharp, and the ink colors are vibrant. This has been my favorite every day writing pen for years and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. (review)
The original every day carry pen. It uses a pressurized ink refill which allows you to write on wet or dirty surfaces, hot or cold temperatures, and even upside down. This is the pen you want to have on you when you leave the house.