Fountain Pen Favorites for January 2017

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January is over? How did that happen? Well, swiftly, I guess. In terms of pens and inks, January wasn’t particularly notable for me. But if I dredge, I can dig up some highlights.

1. Ink Dips. I liked the first two, Sailor Something Something and Pelikan Edelstein Onyx. Oh, yes, Sailor Oku-Yama. Details … poof. The mind is the first thing to go. Or maybe vision. Possibly hearing. What was I saying?

2. Yellow Journalism. I wrote in my new journal pretty consistently. Not every day, but almost. So it’s becoming a habit, which is nice. Unfortunately, I have written 96 pages since Christmas, which is going to be financially ruinous; these things are costly. I’m going back to a Rhodia Webnotebook when I fill my Nanami Writer, to see if the type of journal makes a difference or not.

3.  Hmm, a Rant. Yeah, um, well, hard to think of a third highlight, to be honest. I liked the inks I used this month. Pens were pretty calm for me — there is not much happening here in pens. Actually, I dislike something. I am not in favor of the newly announced 2017 Lamy Safari color, which is “Petrol,” which is the German word for “Teal.” I can’t even pretend to care about this Safari. Especially when the 2017 Al-Star is already an aquamarine called Pacific.

It seems I’ve gone off Lamy. After so many years of the neons and the greens and the greenish yellows, now in 2107 we’re getting not one, but two, blue greens. That’s not what I’d call progress.

I’ve lost faith in Lamy, or interest, or both. I don’t know if the string of similar colors is due to lack of imagination, cost-consciousness or trying to profit off an influx of newbie buyers with no apparent discernment (given the prices they’ll pay for counterfeits). But whatever the cause, I don’t care. I’m bored with the result. It seems cheap and cynical, and worst of all dull, by Lamy.

Yes, I am now completely unexcited about Lamy Safaris. And I used to be their biggest fan.


Photo by Dafne Cholet, Flickr, used under Creative Commons license.

A Review of the Lamy Lx in Rose Gold

Lamy Lx Rose Gold fountain pen

Lamy Lx Rose Gold with medium nib. Clearly under the influence of too much Thanksgiving pie, as well as the word “sale.” I succumbed to Black Friday frenzy and ended up with a Lamy Lx in Rose Gold with a medium nib. And now it’s here.

I think the Lx is a very nice-looking pen in rose gold. The Lx nib writes noticeably more smoothly than the normal Safari nib. But I don’t like the Lx so-called case. And I think the Lx price is easier to justify if you’re buying it as a gift, or you are a new user, or you have a serious yen for one of the colors.

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Lamy Safari: The Chicago Cubs Version

Go Cubs Lamy Safari modification

We do what we can, here at Fountain Pen Follies, to cheer on our favorite baseball team. And this year has been magical. On Saturday night, the Chicago Cubs baseball team won the pennant for the first time in 71 years. Tonight they will play in the World Series, for the first time in 108 years. What in the fountain pen world can commemorate that? How about a Chicago Cubs Lamy Safari.

Cubs colors are blue and red with white, and a baseball is white with red stitching.  My Chicago Cubs edition Safari is made from the cap of a white and red Safari, and the body of a blue Safari.

Go Cubs Lamy Safari modification

It’s inked with J. Herbin Lierre Sauvage (“Wild Ivy”), in tribute to the ivy-covered walls of Wrigley Field, the Cubs home park.

Go Cubs, go. And thanks for a great year.

A Lamy x Line Friends Safari So Cute They Had To Warn Us

Lamy x Line Friends Brown in the Red

The newest Lamy x Line Friends Safari, called Brown in the Red, just arrived at Fountain Pen Follies. It comes with the caution “too cute.” Because it is.

I had declared the first three from Line to be the cutest Safaris ever. But this new kid on the block is challenging for that crown. Here they are all together.

Lamy x Line Friends

The new set is called “Brown in the Red.” In the Line world, “Brown” is the name of the bear character. This set contains two full-size versions of Brown, one that slips on the clip, as in the earlier sets, and one that sits on top of the pen. There’s a swanky red metal case.

Lamy x Line Friends Brown in the Red box

Here are all our Line Friends, with Bear on the top of the cap, just chilling.

Lamy x Line Friends

And here’s Bear on the clip. It looks like the Line friends invited their friend Joe Cool, the Pez dispenser, to join them this time.

Lamy x Line Friends

Truly too cute.

Green, Green: The New Lamy Safari Green

Lamy Safari Green and Apple Green fountain pens

I have moaned a fair bit about how Lamy keeps bringing out so many green Safaris and Al-Stars. Like sands through the hour glass, so come the Lamy greens. And this year Lamy added a Green Safari to the regular line. That’s the pen in the background of that photo, with the sticker and the black cap finial.

I’ve read that the new Green revives the 2012 Special Edition Apple Green Safari. However, like all current Safaris, the new Green has a black cap finial, while the 2012 Apple Green had a green finial. You can see that, too, in the photo above.

I’ve always liked the Apple Green. It’s pretty much the only green Safari or Al-Star I ever use. So, figuring it wouldn’t hurt to have another, I added a new Green Safari to an order I placed last month.  And here it is, again: the Green, with the Apple Green below.

Lamy Safari Green and Apple Green fountain pens

I’m not sure, but I have the nagging feeling that the new Green may be slightly different in hue than the Apple Green. Very slightly. Or maybe not. Does it look slightly different to you?

Those first two photos were taken outside. This next photo was taken inside, under artificial light, after I removed the sticker.

Lamy Safari Green and Apple Green fountain pens

Well, if there is a difference, it’s negligible. Especially under indoor lighting. In any case, this Safari Green is still my favorite Lamy green, in either the Safari or Al-Star line, and for anyone who missed the 2012, it’s nice to have it back.

It’s the pen so nice, I bought it twice.

So I May Have a Problem (cough)

blue fountain pens with chrome trim

Sometimes a new pen purchase triggers … well, not a look in the mirror, exactly, but a furtive peek into the pen case.

Is it possible that I like blue and chrome pens a little too much?

You know, I’m going to go with “no.”  That is unpossible.

Don’t think twice, it’s alright.

Blue fountain pens with chrome trim

Lamy Dark Lilac Safari: Happy New Pen Day

Lamy Safari Dark Liliac fountain pen

My Dark Lilac Lamy Safari just arrived, and it’s really excellent. This is the nicest Safari in years, in my opinion. And not just because it’s neither neon nor green. It just looks great.

I have heard that purple pens aren’t big sellers, which may be why Lamy waited so long to add one to the Safari lineup, but this is very smartly done. It’s less tween, more grownup. The textured plastic, which is also found on the Charcoal Safari, helps with that. There’s also the black clip and nib, and the dark boysenberry color of the pen.

I also bought cartridges of the Dark Lilac ink, which is similarly dark and actually very attractive.

Here is the Dark Lilac next to the Charcoal, to give a better sense of the color.

Lamy Safari Dark Liliac fountain pen compared to Lamy Safari Charcoal

Thank you to Appelboom, who sent this very quickly.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day

green bagels for St. Patrick's Day

And this is roughly reason number 1,979 why I love Chicago: green bagels for St. Patrick’s Day.  I love the melting pot.

Though, yeah, the green color looks slightly strange in a bagel.  Only kids would actually eat those, probably.  Or Shrek.  Or the guy in charge of Lamy Safari color choices.