In the midst of the supposed end-of-the-tunnel of this pandemic (during which here in Toronto things seem pretty unequivocally much, much worse then they were during any other point during the pandemic thus far), we have gotten organized with the whole Sailor Studio Ink line, which we started carrying a bit ago. As has been with all small businesses, we have tried to make the most of this unusual season by working on projects big and small that we might not otherwise get the opportunity to work on, or try new things to see if we get more balls rolling. Along with the need to finally get these inks swabbed, we had long been thinking of doing a mystery sample pack out of the studio inks, since keeping all of these individual samples in stock is a bit of a logistical nightmare for our tiny shop. And so finally, one year and one month into all of this, we gathered 102 of the studio inks into one big group photo, and had at it.


The Mystery Sailor Studio Ink Sample Packs are currently available while quantities last. It’s a fun (and low-commitment) way to explore a new line of inks. We’ve swabbed all of the inks in the Sailor Studio Ink line as well, and if, one fine day, we are able to re-open and you’re able to stop by the shop, we will have them in the ink binder for you to browse.  



It was a beast that took away from me the very last dregs of my sanity, a production involving a lot of numbers floating around in the air, wet Q-tips dropping onto the floor, swabs around on the floor in some vague semblance of organization, a cat stepping onto pools of ink, and then promptly stepping into my lap. A gajillion samples ago, my fingers were fresh and springy. But actually, sometimes these quasi-tedious tasks are really not so bad. I listened to audiobooks, getting into a rhythm with the syringes and labeling, seeing bins slowly filling up with ink samples. I probably spent a bit longer than I really needed to, browsing audiobooks, contemplating whether or not I would enjoy them, queuing them all up.


There was something satisfying about starting off with one tidy box of those pristine white studio ink boxes, bags of plastic vials and caps, procrastinating for some indeterminate amount of time, finally starting into what would turn out to be a very long week and a bit in a state of chaos, syringes needing to be cleaned, loose caps floating around, empty cardboard boxes piled up under the table, crinkled swabs in piles, paper bags and washi tape, and then ending it all with two boxes of neatly stacked rows of sample packs, everything else in the recycling. All of the rows of bottles, the mass of it all slowly shrinking, disappearing one at a time into my tiny vials. A project that could be started and actually completed from beginning to end. A bit of a miracle these days.













Currently reading: City on Fire by Antony Dapiran

Currently looking at: plants falling over and now growing sideways, for lack of a human to attend to it

Currently eating: bean salad

Currently dreaming of: another shop (superior) cat (friend for Chicken)

Also dreaming of: bubble tea

Also dreaming of: children who don’t leave stains on things as part of their existence







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April 21, 2021 — Liz Chan


Neil Carter

Neil Carter said:

Congratulations. A really colourful test of perseverance!

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