2017 - ink between the teeth

Dec 18, 2017

my pen collection

12/18/2017 0
my pen collection
I like fountain pens. I mean, you probably already know this: you're on this blog.

I might have too many new pens at this point to really talk about all of them, but I did want to talk a little about my collection as an end of year retrospective, because my two handfuls have shifted and changed over the course of my short fountain pen life.

Several years ago you wouldn't find a single broad nib with me; now, the overwhelming majority of my pens skew towards the wetter, thicker line. I hope this read, although it contains some pens that are no longer available, is pleasant and informative!

Dec 11, 2017

review: robert oster signature motor oil

12/11/2017 0
review: robert oster signature motor oil
Pen Chalet very kindly reached out and offered me a sample of Robert Oster Signature ink in the shade Motor Oil! Let's take a gander.

Dec 4, 2017

review: noodler's antietam

12/04/2017 0
review: noodler's antietam
I'm starting to dive into my personal collection of fountain pen inks with this entry. I've got plenty, so hopefully you'll stick along for the ride!

Nov 27, 2017

review: tag kyo-iro stone road of gion

11/27/2017 0
review: tag kyo-iro stone road of gion
Here's the last of my Toronto ink samples! Thanks for waiting, if you've been holding out on these ones. Let's go ahead and get started.

Nov 20, 2017

some ink reviewer recommendations

11/20/2017 3
some ink reviewer recommendations
A bit of a lighter post for this week, as those of us in the US get ready for Thanksgiving festivities (and I make my way back home for a well-deserved break). I thought I would share with you some of my favorite ink reviewers that I've managed to stumble across. I hope you give them a visit!

Wondernaut does some of the best ink reviews I've ever seen, with a level of depth and technical knowledge (they have gradient swatches—whaaat?) that I would be amazed if I could do even a fraction of.

Kelli McCown at Mountain of Ink also does some incredibly detailed reviews, using multiple kinds of paper as well as some gorgeous handwriting to show off shading and sheen. They're also one of the most prolific reviewers I've ever seen, with a post practically every day.

And you're probably following Fountain Pen Inks & Bleach's Nick Stewart already, but just in case you haven't, they're your go-to for some of the more artistic ink review. It's all in the title: by applying bleach to inks, you can get some pretty sweet results.

I get far too many redirects to this humble blog from Ana Reinert at The Well-Appointed Desk to not point you in their direction. While Ana doesn't focus specifically on inks, I still appreciate the perspective from a fellow lefty.

There are tons more reviewers out there that certainly don't get enough credit, but this post would stretch for miles if I got the chance. Let me know if you have recommendations for excellent pen, ink, and paper blogs; I'm always looking to add to my Feedly.

I'll see you back on the blog here next week!

Nov 13, 2017

five months with the stalogy 365 a6 notebook

11/13/2017 0
five months with the stalogy 365 a6 notebook
I've been using a bullet journal since July 2017. I'm a fairly recent convert, but my planner has changed quite a bit since the first time I drew out a habit tracker. Shall we take a dive?

Nov 6, 2017

review: sailor jentle rikyu-cha

11/06/2017 2
review: sailor jentle rikyu-cha
Because I am, if nothing else, a fool, I left my review notebook and my scans in my family home, which means the next part of this Toronto Ink Sample Spectacular won't go up until December. I'm sorry about that, but I've got some other stuff lined up in case you're gnawing on your fingernails!

Let's delve right in for this next one, shall we?

Oct 30, 2017

review: tag kyo-iro cherry blossom of keage

10/30/2017 0
review: tag kyo-iro cherry blossom of keage
Hi everyone! Sorry for the lack of post last week; I was fighting off a cold, battling through a couple papers, and marching into work. I'm gonna try to keep track on this one post a week marathon I've been on, barring holiday weeks and such. I'm trying to be a good blogger now, you know!

Here's the second in what I'm lovingly calling my Toronto Ink Samples: Kyo-Iro Cherry Blossom of Keage. It's quite a mouthful of a name!

Oct 16, 2017

review: pilot iroshizuku ina-ho

10/16/2017 0
review: pilot iroshizuku ina-ho
Hey everybody! Welcome back for another ink review. I'm working through the ink samples that I picked up while I was in Toronto. I hope you enjoy this review!

Oct 11, 2017

monteverde monza / jinhao 992

10/11/2017 0
monteverde monza / jinhao 992
I thought this was interesting enough to share.

Goulet Pens posted on their Instagram stories recently about the Monteverde Monza, a new, sub-$20 pen. Once I took a good look at it though, something seemed very familiar....

Here's an image of one Monteverde Monza in the "island blue" color.
...And here's an image of the six colors of the Jinhao 992, which you can purchase for just under $2 each on eBay.

You'll see that there are some extremely obvious similarities. I don't think I have to point all of them out, but I mean—four of the six colors you see in the Jinhao picture are offered in similar (if not downright exact) colors in the Monzas.

Of course, then you realize that the Jinhao 992s are copies of such models as the Platinum 3776, Sailor 1911, and other such cigar-shaped pens. What a cycle!

It seems fairly likely to me that Monteverde is "private labeling" pens that are being manufactured by the same factory that produces these pens for Jinhao. If that's true, the build and writing quality should be about the same.

I hope this information is as interesting to you as it is to me.

Thank you to Goulet Pens for the image of the Monteverde Monza.

Oct 9, 2017

review: twsbi eco

10/09/2017 0
review: twsbi eco
I purchased my TWSBI Eco more than a year ago. A review at this point would be useful, don't you think?

Oct 6, 2017

guest post: diamine poppy red

10/06/2017 0
guest post: diamine poppy red
I was sent a couple of samples to try out from Massdrop! Here's the last one from this first set: Diamine Poppy Red. The review is over at Massdrop, as usual; go ahead and check it out!

Oct 4, 2017

guest post: diamine sepia

10/04/2017 0
guest post: diamine sepia
I was sent a couple of samples to try out from Massdrop! Here's the second one: Diamine Sepia. The review is over at Massdrop; go ahead and check it out!

Oct 2, 2017

guest post: faber-castell burned orange

10/02/2017 0
guest post: faber-castell burned orange
I was sent a couple of samples to try out from Massdrop! Here's the first one: Faber-Castell Burned Orange. I wrote a review of it over at the writing community; go ahead and check it out!

Sep 29, 2017

review: midori md a5 blank notebook

9/29/2017 0
review: midori md a5 blank notebook
I'm using the Midori MD notebook to do all my ink and pen reviews, so I thought I would do a quick write-up of the notebook itself. I've used Midori MD paper before, but I've never had one of their notebooks in my hands.

Sep 25, 2017

welcome

9/25/2017 0
welcome
Hey everybody, welcome to the new blog.

If you've stuck around with the Winter Sharks brand for a while, you'll know that I jumped from Blogger, to a second Blogger, then to Wordpress. I'm back here on Blogger starting over once again. I felt limited by Wordpress's lack of customization, and seeing as how I already run a different blog using this service and have become much more adept at CSS in the past couple of years, I figured it was about time that I made my prodigal return.

I'm going to leave my Wordpress blog up, because there's still some halfway decent information on there (however embarrassingly written it may be), especially within the past two years or so. I'll link back to it from time to time, but let's be honest: there isn't a whole bunch on there that I feel particularly proud of.

I hope this change isn't too shocking! I think the blog over here looks better anyway. If you run into any bugs or have any questions, feel free to let me know! I'm aiming to be much, much better about writing reviews and posts in the coming year. I want to do at least once a month, but considering the backlog of pens and inks I've been enjoying for a long while, I think I should be able to get a couple more up than that.

Thanks for hanging along for the ride. I hope you enjoy what's coming!