Lamy did not hide the ball here: the color of this pen is indeed pink.
Of course, one could quibble. To me, it’s probably more “shiny” than “vibrant,” and it’s more “magenta” than just “pink.” It’s fairly dark. And it’s fairly reserved.
To give you an idea, here it is with the Charcoal Safari.
This is not a barnburner of a pink. It does not leap off the table and accost you with pinkness. It would be, I dare say, just fine for anyone to take to work.
But it’s nice. I think it’s more attractive, and fun, than Lamy’s two prior attempts at something similar — the discontinued Al-Star in Raspberry, or the currently available Al-Star in Dark Purple. Though I don’t think the Vibrant Pink is quite as gorgeous as the (unaccountably) discontinued Ruby Red Al-Star.
All four look nice together.
From left to right is the Ruby Red, of blessed memory; the Raspberry, which looks better in this company, but insipid on its own; the Vibrant Pink, looking fairly vibrant here; and the Dark Purple, another nice color, but more of a burgundy than a purple.
Kudos to Lamy. Also for the last four annual Al-Stars, all of which have been high on the “attractive and fun” quotient.
It sure looks like Lamy has used these recent annual editions to make the Al-Star more fun, and less business-like. Exactly the opposite of what it has done with the recent annual Safari models — which have been less fun, more business-like.
I’m getting the sense that Lamy made a strategic decision a few years back, to broaden the market and increase sales for both ranges. Huh.
Well, good for them. Though I miss when the Safari was always fun, I’ll take a fun Al-Star or two.
I wonder, though, how much farther they really can take the Al-Star. It’s made of anodized aluminum, which means a more limited range of colors. And Lamy has used a lot.
Here are some of my Al-Stars, with the Vibrant Pink to the left.
And some more.
My absolute favorites? Ruby Red (top photo, third from left), Ocean Blue (top photo, far right), Pearl (bottom photo, fourth), Coffee (bottom photo, fifth), and, surprisingly, the Charged Green (top photo, in the middle).
I don’t think the Charged Green was very popular, possibly because it was Lamy’s 900th green pen in a row, give or take. But unlike most Lamy greens, the shiny chartreuse of Charged Green is stunning. It’s one of the few I’d feel bad about losing.
And I should mention the Vibrant Pink ink, too. With the new pen, I also bought a bottle of Vibrant Pink ink, and a box of Vibrant Pink ink cartridges. The ink is good. But I have reservations.
One, I have a lot of pink ink. And I use pink ink much more than the average person. Still, I’m not sure how much more pink ink is necessary.
Two, and this is the main thing, Lamy added some sort of sparkles to the Vibrant Pink ink in bottles. If you remove the plastic base of the bottle, you can see at the bottom of the glass a thin layer of bits of … something. Sparkles, apparently. It looks like something you want to scrub out, or even like bubbles in the glass.
At least there isn’t much of it.
I don’t understand the sparkles. The feed used on the Lamy Al-Star (as well as the Safari, the Vista and the Lx) is too stingy to get the best from a sparkle ink. So, why? Is it for a sheeny effect? Or did they think a pink ink might as well sparkle?
I mean, this is a Lamy, which gave us two (I think) neon yellow-green inks over the past few years.
I am the world’s biggest, and often only, Lamy fan. But I think it’s possible the Lamy Ink Department is someone’s crazy Aunt Mildred, or a few mid-level executives “brainstorming” late at night in a bar the night before it’s due.
Basically, the sparkles confuse me. They even annoy me, slightly. It’s a riddle, but one wrapped in a “don’t care,” inside a “keep it.”
Instead of dealing with the sparkles, I just inked up a sparkle-free cartridge. Lo and behold, Vibrant Pink ink doesn’t need sparkles. It does just fine. Here’s a quick writing sample.
Yes, I have two pink inks in use. What is your point?
My Vibrant Pink pen has an extra-fine nib. I wasn’t sure a pink ink would work well in a Lamy with an extra-fine nib. But Vibrant Pink works perfectly. It’s bright and legible, but not eye-searing. Vibrant Pink ink is more of a bubblegum or hot pink, to me, less like the reddish pinks I tend to favor. But it’s a very pleasant pink.
By the way, look one more time at that writing sample up there. As noted, Vibrant Pink is in a Lamy extra-fine. The other ink is Pelikan Edelstein Turmaline, which is in a modern Pelikan with … what nib, do you think? Is that a nice juicy medium? Or maybe a broad? Yes, very close! That’s a modern Pelikan fine.