Comparing Parker Penman Sapphire and Bung Box (First Love) Sapphire

When I got my new bottle of Parker Penman Sapphire (not actually new, but new-to-me), I hemmed and hawed about what pen I should use.

Part of me wanted to put it in a gorgeous Azure Blue Parker Vacumatic, because PPS is a gorgeous blue Parker ink. Another part of me thought, this is a job for my Pelikan M205 blue demonstrator: PPS is an ink that should be appreciated in a demonstrator. While all the votes on Instagram were for the Vac.

But I ended up choosing the beautiful new Kaweco AL-Sport Light Blue with extra-fine nib instead. I’ve got that pen for review, and it deserves a special ink.

Parker Penman Sapphire ink

After a few days of using PPS in the Light Blue AL-Sport, a light bulb went on: I also have Kaweco AL-Sport in raw aluminum with an extra-fine nib. The same pen, the same nib. So I grabbed the second AL-Sport and filled that with what remains of my sample of Bung Box First Love Sapphire, which is often compared to PPS.

You can see the results at the top, and I’ll put some closeup photos on the next page.

(click Page 2 below to continue)

10 thoughts on “Comparing Parker Penman Sapphire and Bung Box (First Love) Sapphire

  1. My Souter is close enough to Sky High for me, so I don’t worry about the difference. PPS isn’t like any other ink I have, but I really like Blue Velvet so I would be happy to use that if I ran out of PPS or Souten. They are similar enough that I don’t mind too much. I have never managed to try a sample of BB Sapphire. 😦

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  2. Wow, I’m glad I commented. Thanks so much for clearing that up for me! I have always wanted to try Sky High. I read Souten was close, but maybe not close enough. I just may try Souten in the future, to see what I think. But I am going to get Blue Velvet for sure. I am just coming out of the burned out on blue, and black phase. I tried Asa Blue (color is very nice, & so well behaved it isn’t funny), and Blue Velvet (gorgeous). They both made me happy. The Blue Velvet color though is divine. My Inkymyn Sapphire could of been off a little. I did get a purply sample of the Noodler’s La Couleur Royal. The Navajo Turquoise sample was given to me. I decided I liked the Blue Velvet better, after comparing them. I would love to have the Bung Box “First Love Sapphire”, but the price is the only sticking point.

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  3. Both are lovely. I am a bit confused on Bung Box Sapphire vs. Bung Box First Love Sapphire. I am gonna have to go with the Blue Velvet due to price though. Recently I made up a tiny batch of Noodler’s Inkymyn Sapphire. (from two sample bottles, and the tiniest mix possible) It was prettiest on Tomoe River paper, but not fantastic on other paper. I tried a Blue Velvet sample and decided that was the best for me, price-wise. I do love these comparisons though, and I really get a kick out of shading, especially with a little sheen.

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    1. Re the Bung Box ink, those are just two names for supposedly the same ink by Bung Box. On the bottle I saw, the full name was written as First Love Sapphire, but that’s so long a lot of us just shorten it to Sapphire. πŸ™‚ There’s also a Japanese name that one friend uses for BBFLS and that’s Hatsukoi. But all three names refer to the same Bung Box ink.

      Although I should say I got the above information from a retailer, who also told me Bung Box has not changed the formula since it first came out. Naimitsu thinks maybe the formula did change, so that could be, too. But the First Love Sapphire you can buy is the one I have been using — it’s from this year’s LA pen show.

      I am so over my ink budget that Bung Box is not in play for me, either. But Diamine Blue Velvet is a great ink, too, and a great choice. Similar to Blue Velvet and possibly even cheaper are KWZ Azure #3 and Sailor Souten. (You can get samples of those at Vanness, I believe.) I did a review of the KWZ Azure #3 and really liked it. Souten is another great ink, very similar to Sailor Sky High. But Blue Velvet is no slouch. πŸ™‚

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    1. Your eyes are fine! This sample is from a Chicago friend’s bottle; that’s the only BB First Love Sapphire I’ve ever had. Different pens or paper could explain a lot, too. Remember how Tokiwa-Matsu gives crazy sheen, but only sometimes? πŸ™‚

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      1. Good point… I’ll try to remember to send you a sample of mine. It looks like when they added “First Love” to the title, they lightened the color. The new Omeazaki Sea looks closer to my Sapphire. I want to say I purchased OS the last time I bought a batch, so I’ll try to do a side-by-side.

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