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Why Should I Use a Fountain Pen?

Having used ballpoint and gel pens forever, the question always remains? Is there value in switching to a fountain pen! It’s like fountain pens for dummies. To me, fountain pens seemed ‘old’ and ‘outdated’ but they’re actually incredibly beautiful (and it’s another hobby to get into) so remember to give your wallet a heads up as you dive headfirst into this wonderland.

Here’a a brief introduction to the world of fountain pens:

Fountain pens unlike ballpoint or rollerball tips have a triangular nib tip.

There is an ink feed (i.e. the black part that sits behind the steel nib) – see picture below

Pen has been turned upside down to show the ink feed

They usually come with either cartridges that you have to install. Here’s how:

  1. Unscrew the pen and remove the cartridge
  2. Push down the cartridge till the seal is broken which would then ensure the cartridge slides firmly into place for the ink to flow correctly. If you get it wrong on the first try, don’t panic, it may take a while for you to figure it out
  3. When you are done, reassemble the pen back together.

Pens that work like these for beginners are the TWSBI Eco-Ts as well as the LAMY Safari Pens.

Next, when you hold a pen you hold it 45 degrees to the paper.

Hold the pen 45 degrees to the paper

Do not hold it vertically (see picture below) or too horizontally, the ink will not flow properly.


Do not turn the pen around or shake it too much or the ink will possibly leak out. In a similar line of thought, do not leave the pen uncapped as the ink would dry and this may even clog the pen.

For the first part of the two-part post, we meet with Joanne, a newbie in this world of fountain pens.

For a complete newbie here are 5 reasons why I chose to start on my fountain pen journey and how I feel after 2 months of writing almost daily with my fountain pen.

Less hand cramp and tiredness.

It feels really amazing to write with. As someone who has been writing for almost my whole life (23 years) with gel pens and ballpoint pens, when I first started using a fountain pen I was quite blown away. I mean I still use my ballpoints and gel pens but oh boy, a fountain pen changes the game. The hand fatigue and cramping is so much more eased because you don’t have to press the pen down so hard. Fountain pens are for anyone who loves writing. The joy of penning snail mail or just writing long pieces, stories, journaling, etc, cannot be rivalled by a gel pen or rollerball especially if the writing piece goes on for a long while.

Flexibility of choice of nib sizes (and designs).

For gel pens, you had to buy a different pen for every nib size you wanted and you were limited by 0.38 and 0.5 sizes, here you get to choose on the range of – extra fine, fine, medium, broad, double broad and even 03B. When you use fountain pens, you get to decide what kind of weight you want whenever you need to change the weight – either for normal writing, signatures, calligraphy, or even schoolwork.

For me, bullet journaling involves some fine line drawing and relaxed writing, I would use a fine or medium nib (link), If I am writing penpal mails I could go a little thicker on the lines and try a broad or even double broad if I am braver.

An inky world!

Fountain pens aren’t standalone instruments. Getting a fountain pen also immerses you into a world of ink – of all shades and colours. If you’re into colour and hues and nuances of shades, this is everything you need, seriously. The ability of many fountain pens like the TWSBI Pens to draw up ink through the use of converters gives you the ability to use any colour inks you want, and when you find the shade you like, it really is love at first sight.

An ink meet-up with @missmuffat, held recently at the Cityluxe Workroom

In time to come, you can even mix your inks, but that is another world for another dayJ

Analog over digital, returning back to our roots.

In this completely mad digital world which is really fast and efficient, sometimes it is a nice thing to take a breather from the screen and just, calmly go back to pen and paper. The ink has a certain character on the paper and it stains it in a way that gives a certain quality to your writing which gel pens and ballpoint pens cannot seem to copy or imitate. Writing with fountain pens helps me to slow down and reflect.

Pen used: Kaweco STUDENT

Fancy feels :’)

As a young person, writing with fountain pens seemed to be something I heard my parents do in their generation. Trying it out does give me the fancy feels and allows me to sorta come to a better understanding of what they felt when they used the pens and really liked it. My dad really loved his fountain pens but I never understood the allure. Now I do.

Pens pictured: Kaweco AL Sport in Rose Gold, Deep Red, Black and Anthracite

Here’s just some from our selection 😉
Kaweco AL Sport Fountain Pen in Rose Gold
[Broad | Medium | Fine | Extra Fine ]
Kaweco AL Sport Fountain Pen in Deep Red
[Double Broad | Broad | Medium | Fine | Extra Fine ]
Kaweco AL Sport Fountain Pen in Black
[Broad | Medium | Fine | Extra Fine ]
Kaweco AL Sport Fountain Pen in Anthracite
[Double Broad | Broad | Medium | Fine | Extra Fine ]

They last for long.

They really do, firstly the pen. And it is also economic in terms of price over time and inks. If you get a rollerball or a ballpoint pen, it seems to be cheaper at the time of purchase but you’d have to buy it again and again when the ink runs out or when the pen spoils.

Stay tuned for the next post where we will meet with ink and fountain pen enthusiast Jolyn Pek!


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