This all started with our youngest daughter collecting walnuts to make walnut ink, and me cleaning out an office drawer of old, long unused fountain pens. So I bought her the Make Ink book for Christmas, and spent my Christmas money on ink, ink converters, pens, and pen cases. Now my usable desk drawer is thrilling.
I had read of Ferris Wheel Press inks in the wonderful book I reviewed last year, Art Supplies (see my review here), so I started my shopping there. Our daughter and I spent a whole lot of boxing day looking at ink on the internet, and gravitated back to where we started, because Ferris Wheel Press’ inks have great color, some with especially fascinating shimmers. I bought the colors you can see in the doodle above. I have enough pen nibs for a dedicated one for each color, with varying sized nibs.
Their inks come in beautiful bottles, which struck me as a bit too tipsy, so our daughter rigged them up in soft foam in a box, so I can use my new dip pens in them without worrying about them spilling everywhere. Also, after so many sung its praises, I also bought Walnut Ink here on Amazon, but I’m only using it with my dip pens or brushes.
I purchased the Kakimori brass nib dip pen, and a refurbished vintage ruling pen from Etsy. You can spend a fortune on good fountain pens, ranging upwards of $1000 each, if they have gold nibs, which are prized as more responsive and flexible. However, I found this one, for under $30, complete with an ink converter, which I am happy with. Mostly, I’ve been cleaning out and soaking old cartridge pens, and getting converters for them, so I can use my fancy inks in them. I also cleaned out several sizes of nibs of Art Pens that I’ve gotten going again with new black cartridges.
Meanwhile, our daughter has been foraging for ink ingredients on our walks, and bubbling up what looks like witches’ brew on our stove. She’s been quite successful at making ink! When our daughter mentioned all this to a friend from grad school, she was surprised to find out that her friend had also received the same book about making ink from her mother this past Christmas! This seemed to me like such an obscure long shot, but there you have it.
I show you in this post a few of my ink doodles, but I plan to use the ink mostly in my journals: my Bible Lesson journal, my bullet journal, for notes and quotes in my Tome, for my morning pages, in my sketchbooks, and yes, a bit for my art. Just taking notes now is such a joy! Our daughter has spent days and days writing copious bits of her novel, longhand, in gorgeous green ink. We are slowing down over here to enjoy the beauty of analog, and are loving it.
It seems so incredibly indulgent to spend my Christmas money on something so personal for me. There have been so many years it has all gone to groceries! I’m so thankful for this splurge; it is an investment in myself and what I have to say to myself, which feels profoundly symbolic and important. I can’t recommend it enough!