NOTEBOOK REVIEW: Rhodia Webnotebook Silver Edition

I was so excited when Goulet Pens approached me about reviewing the very luxe Rhodia Webnotebook in Silver. It’s a beautiful book and it’s not one I’d tried.

Without a doubt, this is a high-quality item – it is well-made and feels luxurious. The notebook features all of the bells and whistles – hard cover, ribbon bookmark, elastic band, and a handy pocket in the back for small papers, stickers, or receipts.

The ivory-colored paper is 90 gsm Clairefontaine and has as super-smooth feel to it.

I grabbed the nearest pen – a Lamy Al-Star filled with J Herbin Emerald of Chivor – and started writing. What a pleasure!

There was no bleeding, but a little show-through. This pen is wet and the nib is broad.

Even with some pretty heavy scribbling, there was only a teeny tiny amount of ink seeping through to the other side. You can see (in the bottom box) that the paper is starting to ripple a bit from the wetness – even then, there is hardly any ink coming through.

It’s the cover that makes this notebook truly special. Silvery “leatherette” with a lightly brushed finish takes this book to the next level. It feels expensive, it looks expensive. This is the kind of notebook that could easily be used in a professional setting and also be carried around for personal journaling or note taking. It commands attention, but not in the same way that sequins would, if you know what I mean.

Having said all of that, I wondered if it would be durable. I scratched it. On purpose. First, gently on the back. And then, not so gently. And then right across the front. Take that, Rhodia!

Held at the right angle, in the right light, the scratches I made are visible. But mostly not. I’m impressed.

This beauty containing 96 sheets of A5 paper is $25 at Goulet Pens.

If you can’t see spending $25 on a notebook for yourself, it would make a lovely gift for both men and women. (Of course, you’re totally worth the $25 – let’s not even go there.)

Thank you Goulet Pens for the opportunity to try this fantastic notebook!

INK REVIEW: Visconti Purple

As I mentioned when I reviewed the Monteverde Limonada earlier this week, Goulet Pens also sent along Visconti Purple ink for me to try. This is my first Visconti ink to review in detail.

It’s impossible not to notice the unique Visconti packaging. The oddly-shaped bottle arrives in a hard plastic two-piece box that can be used for storage. The plastic bottle is designed in such a way that as a writer reaches those last few precious milliliters of ink, the ink is in a very small area, and therefore quite easy to reach with the nib. No tipping the bottle or using a syringe/dropper required.

This would be a genius design . . . except it’s not.  The bottle is top heavy and even being super-duper careful, I was concerned about tipping it over as I filled my pen.

Mr. Pentulant suggested that perhaps I should place the bottle of ink into the lid of the box to fill a pen, but that was awkward, too.

The bottle aside – look at that color!

How does it write?  Quite wonderfully! It’s a bright shade of purple with solid saturation. At first, I wasn’t sure that I liked the brightness of the purple – I thought it was perhaps a little too rainbows and unicorns. After using it over the past few days, though, I’ve grown to appreciate the color and don’t think it’s as little girlish as the swab seems to indicate.

I had no trouble with the ink’s behavior at all. The pen started right up, I’ve had no flow issues, no bleeding, and I would say this is neither a particularly wet or dry ink. There was a teeny tiny amount of spreading on a couple of lesser quality papers.

Dry time isn’t bad!

Overall, this is a really nice ink and I can see myself using it regularly.

As usual, I waited to read reviews until after I’d formed my opinions about Visconti Purple. It seems that people over on FPN really went crazy for it when the ink was first released in 2012/2013 and I can see why – look at this shading! The Limonada is a medium nib, but it leans toward fine to me. I’m going to have to give this ink a go in a broader nib.

Thank you, Goulet Pens, for giving me the opportunity to try a new-to-me brand of ink! Here’s a link to the sample and one to the full-sized bottle.

Keep an eye on Instagram for more writing samples and I’d love to hear all about your experiences with Visconti inks.

PEN REVIEW: Monteverde Limonada

When Margaret from Goulet Pens asked if I’d like to review the Monteverde Limonada and a Visconti ink, I replied with this:

I have zero experience with either the pen or ink and would love to review them. For the pen – I’m totally open on color – send me your favorite!   For the ink – any of the colors is fine with me – except the brown – because, you know, it’s brown 😉

Let’s look at the pen in detail today and save the ink for another day.

The Monteverde Limonada in Roma Gold is a rich satin-finished champagne color and it’s easy to see why it’s Margaret’s favorite color. It is only available with a medium nib. The pen arrives clipped to a detailed instructional sheet inside the thick paper/board box shown above. It also comes with an converter and two standard international short cartridges – one blue, one black.

I love the detailed instructions.


The Limonada is definitely on the slender side. The grip/section is shaped similarly to the Lamy Safari / Al-Star. These two things make me think this pen isn’t for everyone – especially those with larger hands. I didn’t find it uncomfortable, but it was perhaps a bit unbalanced when the cap was posted.

The clip is flexible and positioned quite high on the cap. When clipped in a shirt pocket, it rides low rather than poking up out of the pocket. The clip is also flared at the end – making it easy to slide onto a stack of papers.

Clairefontaine ends with an “e” – everyon knows that.

But how does it write?

Pretty good! It’s not the smoothest pen I own, but it’s not even a little scratchy. I definitely think the writing looks more like a western fine nib than a medium. There were no writing issues at all and the pen started right up – just the way it’s supposed to work. (This writing is done with Visconti Purple.)

Final thoughts . . .

At $28, the Limonada is a good value. I love that the converter and two cartridges are included. It writes well and I like that it comes in several different colors.

Having said that, this pen won’t replace my inexpensive pen of choice –  Lamy Safari. The Safari is $29.60 at Goulet Pens and does not include the converter. My other low-cost pick is the Pilot Metropolitan at just $15 (converter included).

Thanks to Goulet Pens for the opportunity to try the Limonada. They sent it free of charge and I promised to give my honest opinions.

Keep an eye out on Instagram for more pictures of this pen and ink in use.

INK REVIEW: Diamine Purple Pazzazz

Every now and then, there’s lots of excitement about a new product line in the pen community. Diamine Shimmering Inks definitely caused a lot of speculation and conversation.

When Pen Chalet asked if I wanted a bottle in exchange for posting a review with my honest opinions, my reply was, “Send me the purple!”

Diamine Purple Pazzazz Ink Swab

After gently shaking the bottle, I swabbed Purple Pazzazz (the spelling kills me!) on both a smooth card and a textured Mnemosyne Word Card.

(Important Side Note:  Mnemosyne Word Cards are no longer being produced. If you use these for your swabs and are worried about running out, you may want to get them while they’re still semi-available.)

I love the Purple Pazzazz’s color. A nice deep, rich purple and and the gold shimmer is present, but not overwhelming.

I like using Lamy Safari / Al-Star for new-to-me inks. The Safari pens perform consistently for me and nearly all inks work well in them. I selected a broad nib to encourage lots of shimmery goodness.

I’m bummed that the gold shimmer isn’t noticeable in my writing samples. I definitely gave the bottle a good shake before filling. Maybe it’s the paper (HP 32lb.) I’m using?

Gold bits aside, Purple Pazzazz (that spelling!) is a wonderful ink.  The color is a dark dark eggplanty purple. It performs well with no issues whatsoever.

Diamine is so smart. The color of the lid on each of their Shimming Inks is the color of the shimmer – gold or silver. The opening of the bottle seems a little narrow to me, but the Safari was able to be dunked in there with no trouble at all.

Making spatters is a guilty pleasure.

Lovely gold shimmy-shimmy in the spatters.

I’m going to need to give Purple Pazzazz another try. I really want to see that golden sheen in handwriting.

I mentioned above that the Diamine Shimmering Inks comes in ten different colors – below are swabs of the nine I have. I missed Brandy Dazzle, darn it.  Fortunately, Pen Chalet included a coupon in my box for 10% off my next order and I’m about to take advantage of that.

Keep an eye on my Instagram feed and here as I try out more from this line and please let me know your writing experiences with them, too!