Pilot Iroshizuku Inks - Full Line in 50 mL + the Mini Bottles
It's been a long time coming, but we're finally carrying the full line of Pilot's Iroshizuku inks - and the exciting bit is that we're carrying both the full-sized 50 mL bottles as well as the mini 15 mL bottles. Previously we carried only a portion of the full line and special ordered in any colours we didn't carry for customers who wanted them. Part of the problem with this was the wait time, and the other part was not having samples available for customers to just try out. We previously carried the mini bottles in two sets, with no swapping, so you could only get set A or set B. We're pretty thrilled to now be able to carry the complete line, and you can make your own 3-pack! You can select which three inks you'd like from our drop down menu on the product page. Unfortunately we aren't able to sell the 15 mL bottles individually. Each set will still come in the hard white case. If you're not storing the inks in the case, you can take out the black foam that holds the three bottles in place and use it to store something else. Seeing all the new colours swabbed out, I had a hard time picking three for my set. Shin-Kai is an old stand-by favourite of my mine, which is a deep blue-black which has just a hint of dustiness to it. It also sheens a bit if you've got it really heavy, although if you're looking for more sheen, you might try Sailor Blue-Black (another favourite). I already have a full bottle of it, but I think it might be my favourite Iroshizuku ink. The writing sample is with my Sailor 1911S Medium. The next two I hadn't tried before, but they are two new favourites. Yama-Guri is a darker brown. It's an office-friendly brown that could look almost black with a fine nib or a wet nib, but it has some depth and character to it with its brown undertones. It goes on quite dark, but especially with broader nibs, it will dry to show a warm chestnut brown (as its name translates to from Japanese). It's similar to another favourite of mine, Rohrer + Klingner Sepia. The writing sample is with a Parker Duofold Medium. And this last one is one of my favourite new inks I've tried in a long time: Fuyu-Syogun. I mostly have a thing for brown inks, but my second choice of colour would be blue-grey inks, and this grey blue black is just beautiful. It's airy and vintage and has these tones of shadow and light. Fuyu-Syogun is ironically named Old Man Winter, because I am about as anti-winter as they come (minus Christmas), but this ink is made for a letter on ivory paper, or writing your memoirs under a shady tree in a field. I've been meaning to do more ink reviews - can you believe my last one was Black Swan in English Roses in March? - so I may have to take a closer look at a few of these new inks for the blog. I've been trying this thing recently where I'm keeping fewer pens inked up, and it's going terribly. I had it down to 8 pens, but then I had to make a deep sacrifice for this post to ink up three more pens to show off these inks. You can see the full line up of colours on our website here, or better yet, you can come visit us in the shop to see them in their full glory on the shelf. We had to move around some inks on our shelf to make room for everything, and I feel like we might need to get another cabinet soon. Jon and I are in a heated debate about whether or not to use that top shelf - I'm obviously opposed to it, as I certainly can't reach it without stepping on something. You might notice the lower shelves of the Iroshizuku inks have a smaller label with the swab on it. We're hoping to eventually move all the swabs into these little labels, which will be a labour of love, emphasis maybe on the labour. It won't show the hue of the ink as well, but it will certainly make the entire cabinet look a lot neater. We'll still have our ink binder sorted by brand and by colour available all the time, if you want a look at the bigger swab as well.
***In other news, Canada Post + its workers have finally come to a two-year agreement, so our pens and inks will be shipping with confidence. We definitely took a hit in shipping FedEx and upgrading to Xpresspost, and so we're glad to be back to normal now. Caleb's birthday is this week, and he's been receiving a few gifts from near and far, including in the mail, which is, I think must be one of the most wonderful ways to receive a present. It's mostly books, which is great since Caleb has finally (mostly) ceased to aggressively turn pages to the point of tearing his board books in half. He's celebrating his birthday early by a few disasters including: 1. Sticking his hand into a jar of Nutella, licking it off his fingers, and then sticking his hand back in. 2. While naked, opening my bottle of Sailor Grenade (!) on the bed, and leaking it all over himself and the sheets. It would look worse if it was a brownish kind of red, but Grenade has a bit more of a purple fuchsia tinge to it, and now so do our bed sheets. 3. Throwing a glass jar of cheese dip on our concret floor, and saying "uh-oh" after it broke. I have photo evidence of both the "uh-oh" and then the side-stepping away with a guilty face. How young they learn these things. 4. Opening bottle of Gris Nuage on my carpet, which we just had professionally cleaned for the first time in years (after the flood in the apartment), also while naked. So he is currently stained with both reddish purple and grey all over. Today he got this little cash register from the team, and it's adorable and hilarious. Caleb loves messing around with our register and the receipt printer and especially the credit card machine, which is usually when Jon gives me his patented "LIZ" look, which is my cue to take him to the back. From a very young age, he's been trying to stick business cards into the business end of the machine, pressing buttons randomly. This one only has swipe, but he's a fast-learner.