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Paper Buffet: Yamamoto Fountain Pen Friendly Papers Review

The thirst for papers that were fountain pen friendly was what led to us hosting our very first ‘Paper Buffet’ event in-conjunction with the Singapore Fountain Pen Lovers (SFPL) on the 29th and 30th January.

The event was a showcase of 18 different kinds of ink friendly papers from the aptly named ‘Fountain Pen Friendly Paper Collection’ by Yamamoto Paper. The result was a mix of beautiful penmanship displays by the SFPL community and of course new found love in the form of fountain pen friendly paper! 

In this post ‘Paper Buffet’ article, we’ll be going through the top favourites and some special mentions! 


The holy grail of paper pads is what I’d call the fountain pen friendly paper collection by Yamamoto Paper. With a collection of 18 different paper types, some of which are already no longer produced and highly prized, it’s not an exaggeration to call this product a treasure at all. Inside, you’ll find notable brands like:

  • 35NFC (35 gsm)
  • Halftone Colour 99 White (81.4 gsm)
  • Kin Kaku Den (middle type)
  • Bank Paper (48.2 gsm)
  • Spica Bond (49 gsm)
  • Champion Copy (35 gsm)
  • Typewriter Paper (27.9 gsm)
  • Air Mail Bond White (61.7 gsm)
  • Eastory COC (64 gsm)

Besides providing 5 sheets for you to test your pens and inks on, Yamamoto takes it a step further by giving you the history behind each paper. If you’re keen, you may read them here.


These papers were the cream of the crop when it came to smoothness, lack of bleed through and feathering along with quick drying time. 

NO. 17 OK FOOLS (81.4 GSM) 

Don’t be fooled by the name of this paper. First introduced in Japan by British Fool’s Cap paper in the late 1800s, the Japenese version produced by Oji Ogura Factory has become highly sought after. Contrary to its name, the term ‘Fools Paper has long been used as a term for high-end writing paper. 

At 81.4gsm, it’s the thickest paper in the Yamamoto lineup- a factor that scored it highly during grading. Topping the polls with 4.5 to full marks out of 5, participants loved its:

  • Smooth consistency
  • Thickness
  • Lack of bleed
  • Lack of feathering 

With these winning features, it’s easy to see why the OK Fools topped the polls and became one of the people’s favourite. 


The Cosmo Air Light was another extremely popular paper during the Paper Buffet and for all the right reasons too! This paper is known for its gentle white colour and accuracy of colour representation – the latter of which was greatly appreciated by lovers of shimmer and sheen inks. What participants loved was its:

  • Smooth consistency 
  • Little bleed
  • Little feathering 
  • Ability to show shimmer and sheens well 


This paper scored high marks, with many praising its smooth texture and little bleed. It was also the only cream coloured paper to make the top 3! 

Participants loved its:

  • Smooth consistency 
  • Little bleed 

Compared to the other papers, it probably has the most unexpected history, which you can read here. 


Most fountain pen users or journalers will be familiar with this paper from Kokuyo, which is most notably featured in their Jibun Techo notebooks. Participants loved the THIN PAPER’s: 

  • Lack of bleed
  • Lack of feathering

Although thin as its name says, the paper is impressive as an ink friendly  paper. A participant even likened it to a ‘Tomoe River Lite’. 


The inclusion of Tomoe River in the top 5 isn’t really all that surprising considering its popularity amongst many fountain pen users. For those who are unfamiliar with the brand, it’s known for its:

  • Lack of bleed
  • Lack of feathering

While the Tomoe River Cream didn’t receive as high a praise as the original, both papers still managed to steal many hearts even when faced against other fountain pen friendly papers. 



This was probably one of the most unique papers in the collection.

Its ability to change ink colour when written on fascinated many  fountain pen lovers. When red ink is used, it reveals a yellow gold colour while blue turns into red.

While established to not be a paper for everyday use, it was nonetheless still fun to experiment with. 

NO. 7 GLASSINE (30.5 GSM) 

Glassine was another much talked about paper during the event and for not so great reasons. 

With a consistency similar to tracing paper and thin at 30.5 GSM,  it faired poorly against most inks used. A longer than usual drying time also didn’t help.

Although one of the least favourite papers in the pack, the one redeeming factor Glassine had was the beautiful ink vibrancy that showed due to the near transparent and density of the paper. 


Yamamoto’s very own brand of papers proved to be popular with SFPL members too. Did you know that the cream coloured paper is found in the RO-BIKI notebooks

The paper has a slightly rough texture that some might love or dislike. At 75gsm, it’s one of the thicker papers in the collection – a feature that users liked. Besides being able to take inks, New Chiffon Cream is also PH neutral, allowing it to prevent discolouration over time. 


This was a surprising favourite amongst the SFPL members. This textured paper was once developed by Mitsubishi Paper Mills in 1960 as bank ledger paper and to ensure a smooth  writing experience. 

While it didn’t make the top 5 ranking, it still scored high marks for it’s uniqueness and great writing experience. 


For the avid writer, two very important factors come into play: pen and paper. Quality paper can be hard to find in a world where notebooks come cheap and paper excellence isn’t the biggest consideration. Many fountain pen enthusiasts mainly use ‘Tomoe River‘. This particular brand is a household name in the fountain pen world, known for its superb writing experience and tolerance for inks. 

With a literal buffet of papers, we were glad to discover many more new favourites with everyone. As our thirst for more papers continue, we look forward to hosting another Paper Buffet in the future! In the meantime, tell us what made your list and what didn’t! 



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