Clairefontaine and Rhodia papers are often cherished by fountain pen users because their water based inks typically do not bleed through or feather on our papers. How does this work? Clairefontaine manufactures the papers in a such a way that it resists more ink rather than it absorbs. (Want to learn more about paper manufacturing processes? Check out Clairefontaine’s Paper Vocabulary here.)
Downsides to this process? For some, depending on the size of the nib, type of ink used, and or relative humidity, ink might take longer to dry on the page. (This is why blotting paper was invented. J. Herbin makes blotting paper)
Is the length of time it takes for ink to dry on the page important to you? Have you ever switched to a different paper because of it? Do you use blotter paper?
We have started The Paper Project as a way to allow 30 people each week to receive paper samples from products across the various Exaclair brands. Every Monday, we will be offering paper samples from 1-4 products to 30 people on a first come, first served basis. The paper will be mailed once we reach 30 participants and recipients will be notified via e-mail.
THANK YOU FOR YOUR INTEREST – WE HAVE REACHED 30 PARTICIPANTS FOR THIS WEEK. TUNE IN NEXT MONDAY FOR THE NEXT INSTALLMENT OF THE PAPER PROJECT
Week 1 samples will include 1 sheet each of these 3 6×8″ Rhodia graph ruled products:
- Rhodia Ice: white/grey/graph
- Rhodia 80th Anniversary ivory/grey/graph
- Rhodia Classic white/blue/graph
If you have been chosen to receive samples, please come back and leave comments on this page. We welcome you to blog or share to your favorite social media sites about your experiences. Tag #rhodiapaperproject on Instagram and Pinterest
What kind of comments are we looking for?
- Tell us what you like/don’t like about the paper.
- How do you like using pencil/pen/fountain pen on it.
- Would you use it to write/draw/doodle/sketch etc.?
- - and anything else you think we should know.
Contest Alert! Enter now for your chance to win 1 of 15 of the appropriately named “No. 80″ Rhodia 80th Anniversary gift sets!
This limited edition gift set includes a 6 x 8 1/4″ (14.8 x 21 cm) notepad featuring 90g ivory paper with our classic grid in a light grey ink. It also includes an 80th anniversary pencil! A copper-colored Rhodia name and logo appears on both sides of the pad, with a special 80th anniversary emblem on the back cover.
This contest is open to US residents only and will be remain open until midnight EST on Tuesday 10/21/14 The winners will be chosen at random and announced on the blog on Thursday 10/23/14. One entry per household please. If you are viewing this post via e-mail or on a mobile device, you may need to visit Rhodia Drive directly to see the entry form.
Please feel free to share this post on your own blog, or on any of your preferred social media outlets.
We received a recent letter from Michael Marchesan asking us to develop an fountain pen friendly engineer’s pad. When Karen Doherty asked why engineers couldn’t use the standard grid, Michael responded as follows:
I used to do all of my math/science on graph paper for years until I began engineering study and realized the beauty of engineering paper.
Engineering paper has it’s grid on the backside, which you do not actually write on. The grid shows through to the front of the paper which is blank, so you can have the benefits of writing on gridded paper, without actually writing on a grid.
When you tear your sheet off the glued-top-bound pad, it appears as if though you wrote in perfectly straight lines and did all your calculations, figures and measurements with incredible precision on a blank sheet without the distraction of a grid on your work.
The other benefit to this is that the grid does not show up when your work is photocopied from engineering paper.
Each grid on engineering paper is 0.2″x0.2″, with bold grid-lines forming 1″x1″ squares every 5 grids–great for scaling and doing precise engineering calculations and figures.
So who else out there would like to see Rhodia produce a fountain pen friendly version of this specialized paper? Spread the word and tell people to comment on this post.
Several years ago, I had the opportunity to test a LOT of different colors/brands of fountain pen inks. (over 100!) Because I am a visual person, the best way for me to compare and contrast was to perform ink swatches and though my method was simple, you can make this process as detailed as you’d like. In the images I’ve attached here, I used cotton swabs to do 1, 2 and 3 swipes of each J. Herbin ink in a white drawing pad.
I also kept two separate journals that I only used for ink testing. One with white paper and one with ivory.
What process do you use to remember what all of your inks look like?
The new Rhodia Anniversary notepad set contains the same ivory paper as in the Webbie (Webnotebook) and the R by Rhodia premium pads – 90g with grey graph ruling.
How do you like the 90g ivory Rhodia paper? Do you prefer it over the white? Prefer the grey ruling over the blue? We’ve heard a few people talk about fountain pen ink colors on white vs. ivory – what are your thoughts on that? Are there any other Rhodia products that you’d like to see use the ivory paper?
Pointing you in the direction of a few giveaways of cool stationery and art supplies:
Sheaffer Giveaway – 100 Year Coin at Pen Chalet
PanPastel Giveaway at Altered Pages
LePen Giveaway at The Well-Appointed Desk
Fountain Pen Love Giveaway at JetPens
Chalkboard label giveaway at CakeMom
Beautiful pop-up thank you cards at Blushless.com
Pigma Micron Giveaway via Liza Sylvestre on Instagram
Stay tuned for our Rhodia Anniversary Giveaway in October!
One of the big draws to writing with a fountain pen is the ability to choose your ink. With literally hundreds of colors available from a wide variety of brands, chances are you will be able to find the exact shade of blue or violet that you’ve been searching for.
Aside from color, inks have additional properties that may be of interest to the user such as:
- Viscosity. Some pens that have a tendency to write dry, might benefit from an ink that flows more freely and vise versa.
- Saturation. Some inks contain much more pigment than others. This would likely be an aesthetic choice, as would be an ink’s ability to show shading.
- Scent. Depending on the materials used to create the ink, some may emit a stronger scent than another. Some inks even add fragrance to their chemistry.
- Waterproof. As fountain pen inks are water based and do not contain shellac, there are options for people wanting or needing their inks to be water-resistant on the page.
What is shading? Lapis on the Fountain Pen Network offers this explanation: “…shading is an easily observable increase in intensity and/or darkness in certain parts of the handwriting on paper. … The easiest place to see shading is basically on the downstrokes of your hand, where the nib usually gets more force down onto the paper. Then the line is usualy wider, slower and thus more ink gets posted onto the paper. Shading is best (not exclusively) done using a broad, especially flexy or, to a certain extent, springy nib.”
If you’d like to try some inks before you buy, check out the forums on the Fountain Pen Network to see who has what that they’d like to swap. Popular retailer that sell ink samples include Goulet Pens, Anderson Pens and isellpens.
I know that many of our fountain pen friends enjoy switching out their inks to mark the changing seasons. Did you have any favorite brands/colors that you used or discovered this summer? Did you make any recent purchases that you are looking forward to using this fall?
Did you discover any new all-time-favorite ink colors at any of the recent pen shows?
First impressions with J. Herbin Stormy Grey at FPGeeks
First Day of School Pencils, Take Two. at Pencil Revolution
Orange Delights From Ink To Paint at Inkophile
Guest Post: “I think I want to try out this whole fountain pen thing.” at The Pen Addict
Cursive: Is it really that important? at The Well-Appointed Desk
Journaling Exercise: Write A Review at Kaizen Journaling
Traveling pencils at Palimpset
Shades of White at No Pen Intended
How Much Do You Spend On School Supplies? at One Hundred Dollars a Month
Lamy 2000 Fountain Pen Review at Write to Me Often
DIY Pen Storage V.2! at EdJelley
Flight Delays in My Sketchbooks at Balzar Designs
An Introvert Goes to the Pen Show at From the Pen Cup
Check out FPGeeks on YouTube for videos from the 2014 DC Pen Show
Monday’s product spotlight post about our Rhodia Classic Staplebound Notebooks included a typo. What I mean to say, was: Do you use them for a specific purpose? when instead, I wrote Do you use them for a specific purple?
This caught the attention of Beth Treadway who asked, “Purple? Is that typo a Freudian slip that we may someday get these in colors?” Not that I’m aware of Beth. Although, there is a purple version of the Clairefontaine 1951 staple bound notebooks which might be of interest to some of my fellow purple fanatics. (Purple is my favorite color, which probably explains the typo.)
• 90 g pH neutral, acid-free lined white paper with a smooth satin finish
• Grained paper cover with front label
• Vintage look and feel
• 48 sheets, lined, in two sizes and seven colors: 3 1⁄2 x 5 1⁄2 and 5 3⁄4 x 8 1⁄4
I love a lot of things vintage for their classic design. Classic, as in that sweet combination of simple, practical and durable.
When I first started writing with fountain pens, I wanted nothing more than to exclusively use vintage, but it never seemed to work out for me. One after another I’d buy a vintage piece (typically on the cheap) that would work for a while then ultimately, a seal or sac would break, the nib would bend or get scratchy, or the ink would stop flowing properly. I began to see vintage pens as fragile creatures and became reluctant to invest in their restoration. As much as I love vintage, there was a part of me that didn’t like knowing that a favorite tool would be difficult to repair or replace and so I began to favor more modern designs like Lamy’s Safari, Pelikan’s M200 and the Sailor Sapporo – though I can’t tell you how many times I’ve poured over the offerings on sites like Vacumania, longing for a silver celluloid Parker Vacumatic, or a fully functional Parker 51. (Mine has a cracked front section and needs a new seal/sac)
Do you have a favorite vintage pen? If you take a picture of it and send to to me at firstname.lastname@example.org I’ll include it on our Favorite Pen Fan Photo Page.
These slim, side stapled notebooks are available in three sizes with either black or orange covers.
The 3″ x 4 3⁄4″ contains 24 sheets of graph Rhodia paper (Perfect size for a pocket!)
The 6″ x 8 1⁄4″ contains 48 sheets of lined Rhodia paper
The 8 1⁄4″ x 11″ contains 48 sheets of lined Rhodia paper
The card covers are coated and waterproof, the paper 80 g extra white. (Acid-free, pH neutral & fountain pen friendly)
Have you tried these? Do you use them for a specific purple?
Optical character recognition, (OCR) is the mechanical/electronic conversion of scanned or photographed images of typewritten or printed text into machine-encoded/computer-readable text. It is widely used as a form of data entry from some sort of original paper data source, whether passport documents, invoices, bank statement, receipts, business card, mail, or any number of printed records. It is a common method of digitizing printed texts so that they can be electronically edited, searched, stored more compactly, displayed on-line, and used in machine processes such as machine translation, text-to-speech, key data extraction and text mining. (Per wiki)
If you are using an OCR app to digitize your handwritten notes, have you taken notice whether there are any issues when using colored inks? What about colored inks on white versus ivory or yellow paper? Do you have any favorite OCR apps or software that you’d like to recommend?
A new ink is being added to the J. Herbin 1670 line. Joining Rouge Hematite and Bleu Ocean is Gris Orage or “Stormy Grey”. Gris Orage is a grey ink with gold particulate which makes the ink appear silvery. It will be available in France towards the end of July. Samples have been requested to display at the New York Gift Show in mid August, and should be available in the US early this fall.
Is this an ink you will be looking forward to trying?