Posts filed under Diamine

Cult Pens Diamine Christine Iridescink Review

Cult Pens Diamine Christine Iridescink Review

I guess I’m a sheen ink guy now. At least somewhat.

For any ink that is created to exhibit properties on the more extreme end of the spectrum - sheen and shimmer, for example - I am cautious. That means, I stick with the big brands who have a track record of good inky behavior. Not only do I expect them to work well, they need to flow well, clean well, dry well, and not act odd on the nib or on the page.

Diamine is one of those brands I have had great luck with, so when Cult Pens asked if I wanted to review round two of their Iridescink collection, it was an easy yes.

The relationship between these two great British brands extends back for several years, beginning with the Deep Dark series. Those colors were a hit, and the Iridescink has turned this entire collaboration up to eleven.

Previously, I reviewed Maureen and Robert, the first two inks in the series. I love both, but I cannot tell a lie: I love Maureen the most. Sorry Robert! Maureen is a bright blue with a red sheen, so when I saw Christine’s formulation - blue black with red sheen - you could say I was excited. I’m happy to report Cult Pens and Diamine delivered another winner.

Cult Pens Diamine Christine Iridescink

I used my TWSBI ECO 1.1 mm stub to test Christine with. The ink goes down dark on the page, and dries with a red sheen covering what seems to be around 90% of the line. Where the letters start, and the ink is thinner, a bright blue peeks out from underneath, making for a great result on the page. I’m biased, of course, because blue black ink with red sheen may be my single favorite every day ink option. (Note: Similar to my Maureen and Robert review, it is practically impossible for me to get a good picture of this ink.)

It’s this level of sheen that I am not used to. It shows up the best on sheen-favorable (aka long dry time) paper like Tomoe River and in my Yoseka notebook. On Rhodia, it’s not as pronounced and more of the blue comes out on the page, with some sheen around the edges. On Leuchtturm, it was darker with less sheen, but dried the fastest.

Rhodia DotPad

Rhodia DotPad

Cult Pens lays all of this out on the product page, stating:

“Sheen can be fickle. Everything has to be just right for sheen to show up, so we can't guarantee you'll see sheen when you write with these inks, but they give you a good chance in the right conditions. You need the right combination of ink, pen and paper.”

This matters if you want the full effect of Iridescink, or any sheening ink. Heck, this matters for any pen, ink, and paper combination. That said, Christine is a color I enjoy on any paper type so far. The next test will be if I like it in a fine nib, as opposed to a stub. My guess is I will.

Yoseka Notebook

Yoseka Notebook

As much as I have fawned over these inks, I have yet to discuss possibly the best part of all: The price. At £9.50 (just under $12) for an 80 ml bottle, they are practically giving it away. That makes biting the bullet on international shipping a whole lot easier.

I’m a fan of sheen when it is well-behaved. The Iridescink inks from Cult Pens and Diamine are exactly that, and I can’t wait to see what they come up with next.

(Cult Pens provided this product at no charge to The Pen Addict for review purposes.)

Posted on September 16, 2019 and filed under Diamine, Cult Pens, Sheen, Ink Reviews.

Diamine Gibson Les Paul Guitar Ink in Pelham Blue Burst: A Review

Diamine Gibson Les Paul Guitar Ink Pelham Blue Burst

(Susan M. Pigott is a fountain pen collector, pen and paperholic, photographer, and professor. You can find more from Susan on her blog Scribalishess.)

Diamine produces inks in such a wide array of colors that it’s hard to keep up. But sometimes they offer collections of inks that follow a theme, such as the Gibson Les Paul collection. Each ink in the collection evokes one of the finishes of the Gibson Les Paul guitars. I received the version called Pelham Blue Burst. It is named after the color on this gorgeous guitar:

This is a Gibson Les Paul Studio 2016 T Pelham Blue Guitar. (image via    Reverb.com   )

This is a Gibson Les Paul Studio 2016 T Pelham Blue Guitar. (image via Reverb.com)

As soon as I received my bottle of ink, I put it in a beautiful blue PenBBS Model 323 and have been writing with it for a couple of months. It’s a gorgeous deep blue that leans toward dark turquoise.

In my tests, the ink is simply stunning on Rhodia dot paper. Even in fine nibs there’s a bit of shading, and it only gets better in wider nibs. The ink is medium-wet, not too dry and not so wet that it smears when you write with it. The swab shows how dark the color can get--it actually spans a wide range of blues depending on the width of the nib. It is not waterproof.

Diamine Gibson Les Paul Guitar Ink Pelham Blue Burst Ink Review

On my Col-o-dex card, the deepness of the blue shows in the swab. I used a Brause Blue Pumpkin dip nib to write the name of the ink, and, again, you can see how dark the ink can get. What’s really intriguing is the sheen. The ink splats glow magenta and green.

Diamine Gibson Pelham Blue Burst
Diamine Gibson Pelham Blue Burst Ink

Chromatography confirms the sheen found in the ink. There’s a good amount of pink/magenta, a bit of green, and, of course, blue.

Diamine Gibson Pelham Blue Burst Chromatography

I always like to test my inks with my Handwritmic ruling pen to see how they perform in a giant nib. Pelham blue definitely shines, with lots of shading variation and sheen where the ink pools.

Diamine Gibson Pelham Blue Burst Writing
Diamine Gibson Pelham Blue Burst Close Ink

I am quite taken with Pelham Blue. It’s an unusual blue with a wide range of hues depending on the paper, the nib width, and the wetness of the nib. The sheen is quite striking, but even in normal writing circumstances when the ink doesn’t pool, this blue exudes sophistication.

You can purchase Diamine Gibson Les Paul Guitar Ink in Pelham Blue from Goldspot Pens in a 30ml bottle for $7.50 or a huge 80ml bottle for $15.00.

(Goldspot provided this product at no charge to The Pen Addict for review purposes.)


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Diamine Gibson Pelham Blue Burst Bottle
Posted on September 6, 2019 and filed under Diamine, Ink Reviews.

Diamine Starlit Sea Shimmering Ink Review

Diamine Starlit Sea Shimmering Ink Review

Well, it looks like shimmer ink happened to me. And I have Diamine Starlit Sea to thank for that.

I didn’t think it would happen in all honesty. While I always appreciated the look of a good shimmer ink, I had no desire to use one for more than a test run, much less keep it in the rotation. I was scared of them, rightfully or wrongfully. If you don’t have good fountain pen hygiene and maintenance, any fountain pen ink can cause problems in your pen. Why would anyone in their right mind risk adding sparkles into what is often a finely-tuned writing machine?

Because they are awesome.

Diamine Starlit Sea Shimmering Ink

I began seeing swatches of Diamine Shimmer inks in 2015, and like other popular shimmer inks - J. Herbin for example - I loved how they looked. Still, I had zero desire to use them. But as the lineup expanded, and the color selection exploded, I could no longer contain myself.

Starlit Sea had two things going for it when I chose to use it: An interesting base color, and silver sparkles. The second part is almost mandatory for me personally. Just like with fountain pen hardware, gold is a much higher bar to clear and has do be done just right for me to choose it. Silver sparkles and rhodium trim are my jam.

Diamine Starlit Sea Shimmering Ink Writing

The first part, the underlying blue black ink color, was kind of a chicken move on my part. I could have gone more experimental, like with Neon Lime or Citrus Ice, but I played it safe this time around. It was the right call too, because this shade is more than interesting enough. There is a bright, turquoise-like tone under the dark blue when the ink first goes down and prior to the sparkle taking over. It’s really fun to watch go down on the page, and the color does peek out from time to time in the finished product.

Diamine Starlit Sea Shimmering Ink Rhodia

And that finished product is full of sparkles! Like, a lot of sparkles. I think by coming in at this juncture of the shimmer ink product cycle I’m getting the best version of this style of ink. The particles are super-fine, don’t clog any part of the pen, and have a very high dispersal rate throughout the ink on the page. The more I think about it, the more impressed I become.

Diamine Starlit Sea Shimmering Ink Tomoe

So count me in. I’m on the sparkle ink bandwagon. Better late than never, right? I see a future where I have at least one shimmering ink inked up at all times, just for the fun and fascination it provides on the page. And isn’t that what it’s all about?

(JetPens provided this product at no charge to The Pen Addict for review purposes.)


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Membership starts at just $5/month, with a discounted annual option available. To find out more about membership click here and join us!

Diamine Starlit Sea Shimmering Ink Bottle
Posted on February 4, 2019 and filed under Diamine, Shimmer Ink, Ink Reviews.