JetPens Blog 2016-08-24T12:23:03-04:00 Zend_Feed_Writer JetPens <![CDATA[Guide to Manga Pen Nibs]]>
Manga Pen Nibs

Comic artists have a wealth of tools at their disposal, including technical drawing pens, brush pens, and more. So why bother with a nib? Manga pen nibs are actually quite versatile--unlike technical drawing pens, they are flexible enough to provide expressive line variation and create different effects, but easier to control and draw finer lines than brush pens. From sketching to outlining to filling in details, it's easy to see why manga nibs are artist staples. Keep reading to see our favorites and find out more about the different kinds of nibs that manga artists use.

2016-08-23T10:04:48-04:00 2016-08-23T10:04:48-04:00 Miriam
<![CDATA[Sketchnotes: A Guide to Visual Note-Taking]]>
Sketchnotes: A Guide to Visual Note-Taking

If you’re a visual learner with a passion for pens and paper, the sketchnote method is perfect for you. Sketchnoting combines traditional handwritten notes with drawings, symbols, and other creative elements. The result is an engaging map of ideas with clear visual cues.

With sketchnotes, you can:

  • Use visual cues to boost memory retention
  • Keep your brain active and engaged with variety and stimulation
  • Develop ideas more comprehensively by creating connections between points
  • Make your notes more compact and easier to review at a glance

In this guide, we introduce basic sketchnote techniques and recommend some supplies to get you started

2016-08-22T12:01:42-04:00 2016-08-22T12:01:42-04:00 Elaine
<![CDATA[Left-Handed Pens & Writing Supplies]]>
Left-Handed Pens and Writing Supplies

This may be the best time in history to be left-handed.

The days of psychologists advising parents to train left-handedness out of their children are over. Although lefties used to be regarded with suspicion, few people today would argue that they are more sinister than the average person. Despite these gains, the left-handed 10% of the world’s population still have to adapt to tools and systems designed for right-handed people. The most pervasive example of this is writing.

Writing from left to right as in English, Chinese, and most other modern languages is ideal for right-handed writers, but difficult for left-handers. Lefties’ hands naturally move across the line of writing and smudge the ink. Some languages like Chinese and Japanese can be written vertically, but even then, the stroke order for individual characters moves from left to right.

In the spirit of International Left-Handers Day and in appreciation of left-handers everywhere, we present several writing implements that are especially suited for left-handed writers.

2016-08-16T15:25:09-04:00 2016-08-16T15:25:09-04:00 Kristin
<![CDATA[Kaweco Sport: A Comprehensive Guide]]>

With its sleek, attractive body, and brilliant performance, we wouldn't be surprised if you thought the Kaweco Sport was a sports car. Born from rigorous German engineering and design in 1935 as an unassuming plastic fountain pen, it has since gained roller ball pen, ballpoint pen, and even mechanical pencil siblings.

What distinguishes the Sport line from other Kaweco product lines is its iconic octagonal shape and oversized cap. This unique design allows the pen to keep its compact, pocket shape, while acting as a full size pen when the cap is posted. The Sport is often considered a gateway pen into the fountain pen world with its approachable plastic body while including options within the line to upgrade. To see all the different iterations within the Sport line, read on.

2016-08-09T09:27:44-04:00 2016-08-09T10:20:08-04:00 Miriam
<![CDATA[Exclusive Interview: Michael Gutberlet of Kaweco]]>
Q&A with Michael Gutberlet of H&M Gutberlet Gmbh

The idyllic city of Heidelberg, Germany is home to one of the oldest names in fine writing instruments. Kaweco (short for Federhalter-Fabrik Koch, Weber & Co) has been designing and producing exquisite fountain pens since 1883. Their flagship and most recognizable pen is the octagonal Sport. Introduced in 1913 as an exceptionally compact and light fountain pen, the Sport quickly grew in popularity. In 1935, the octagonal body debuted to much fanfare, catapulting the Sport to the iconic status it enjoys today.

Michael Gutberlet of H&M Gutberlet Gmbh
Although Kaweco closed in 1981, it was revived in the mid-90s by a company called H&M Gutberlet Gmbh who wanted to continue Kaweco’s legacy of crafting elegant and functional writing tools. We had the privilege of interviewing Mr. Michael Gutberlet, an avid fountain pen collector and son of the founder of H&M Gutberlet, to get his insights on the past, present, and future of Kaweco.
2016-08-05T11:10:00-04:00 2016-08-08T16:17:50-04:00 Miriam
<![CDATA[Uni Style Fit: A Comprehensive Guide]]>
Uni Style Fit: A Comprehensive Guide

Get ready to meet your ultimate pen.

The Uni Style Fit pen system allows you to select exactly the right components for you and assemble them into a pen that holds multiple cartridges at once or a sleek, space-saving single-cartridge pen. Uni-ball has reworked their most popular gel, ballpoint, and mechanical pencil technologies into refill components for the Uni Style Fit. The refills come in sixteen dazzling colors and five tip sizes to suit every use from writing in book margins, to color-coding notes, to making bold, smooth signatures. Mix and match your favorites with any of four multi pen bodies and two single pen bodies to design a pen or pen set that perfectly fits your life.

2016-08-02T21:38:21-04:00 2016-08-02T21:46:04-04:00 Kristin
<![CDATA[Pilot FriXion Erasable Pens: A Comprehensive Guide]]>

Pilot's FriXion erasable ink belongs in the mythical world of unicorns and fairies. Even though we know the science behind this incredible technology, watching the ink disappear right before our eyes is always a magical moment. With a huge range of products spanning gel ink pens, color pencils, markers, highlighters and more, it's only fitting that we break down this line of fascinating products.

2016-07-26T10:12:13-04:00 2016-07-26T10:50:09-04:00 Miriam
<![CDATA[Calligraphy for Beginners: Using a Pointed Pen]]>
Calligraphy for Beginners: Using a Pointed Pen

If you frequent social media or have been to a wedding, chances are you’ve seen how beautiful calligraphy can be. If you’ve ever wanted to learn calligraphy yourself, this article is for you. We will go over some of the basic calligraphy tools you’ll need to get started and show you how to use them.

There are several ways to make calligraphy, but we will focus on pointed pen calligraphy. This uses a pen with a pointed tip which makes both thick and thin lines by flexing, or bending open, as you press it onto the paper. If you would like to explore brush pen calligraphy, check out our post on Brush Lettering for Beginners.

2016-07-19T16:40:31-04:00 2016-07-19T16:40:31-04:00 Kristin
<![CDATA[Mechanical Pencil Lead Comparison]]>
Mechanical Pencil Lead Comparison

With mechanical pencils, the right lead can make the difference between a forgettable writing experience and one bordering on sublime. Whether you’re using a 40-cent Bic or a $400 Montblanc, it’s the lead that determines how a pencil writes. When choosing your lead, the first thing to consider is the choice of lead hardness grade. Softer leads are darker and smoother than harder leads, but also smear more and get used up faster. For everyday use, we recommend staying in the range of H to 2B.

Once you’ve chosen a hardness grade, you’ll need to consider which brand of lead to use. Different brands do perform differently, and the best one for you depends on how you use your pencils most. Let’s take a look out our top pencil lead recommendations, after which we’ll delve into a more extensive comparison of all our lead brands.

2016-07-12T09:09:51-04:00 2016-07-12T09:13:18-04:00 Ryan
<![CDATA[Black Fountain Pen Ink Comparison]]>
Black Fountain Pen Ink Comparison

Black ink is like a well-fitting suit or dress—always classy and never out of place. But just as good clothing comes in a variety of cuts and styles, not all black inks are the same. Black inks can be darker or lighter, faster or slower drying, and so on. Black fountain pen inks are especially varied, with dozens to choose from and no two entirely alike. Read on for a look at our top black fountain pen ink recommendations, followed by a detailed comparison of all our black fountain pen inks.

2016-07-05T09:45:00-04:00 2016-07-21T15:11:06-04:00 Ryan
<![CDATA[Wax Seal How-To]]>
Wax Seal How-To

Wax seals add elegance and distinction to your correspondence no matter how simple your stationery is. Plus, they’re fun to use! They combine history, mindfulness, and fire in one picturesque dollop of wax. As straightforward as the process of making a seal is, it does take technique to get crisp results every time. Read on for illustrated instructions, tips, and tricks.

2016-06-28T10:22:57-04:00 2016-06-29T12:55:47-04:00 Kristin
<![CDATA[Brush Lettering for Beginners]]>
Brush Lettering for Beginners

Lettering with brush pens is a fun way to flex your calligraphy muscles without having to reach for messy dip pen nibs and inks. These portable pens provide greater line variation and the ability to create larger letters compared to traditional calligraphy nibs. Although more casual than most forms of calligraphy, it does take some patience and practice to learn how to use a brush pen. In this article, we’ll be teaching you how to create beautiful script using brush pens and throwing in some tips and tricks along the way.

2016-06-21T14:31:27-04:00 2016-06-29T12:55:24-04:00 Miriam
<![CDATA[Stationery That Travels Well]]>
Stationery That Travels Well

Millions of people venture onto the road and into the sky every year to explore unfamiliar sights, foods, and experiences through travel. If you’re one of them, you know that packing the right equipment makes]]>

2016-06-14T16:22:08-04:00 2016-06-14T16:27:11-04:00 Kristin
<![CDATA[The Pilot Metropolitan Fountain Pen: A Classy, Yet Cheap Fountain Pen that Writes Like a Dream]]>
Pilot Metropolitan Fountain Pens

Fountain pen users are a diverse bunch, but most are searching for that one special pen that combines everything they need in one small package. It should be comfortable to use. It should be attractive. It should fit the personality of its owner and should not break the bank. Above all, it should write well.

Unicorns don’t exist, but that special pen does.

Enter the Pilot Metropolitan. This smooth-writing pen quickly became the go-to beginner fountain pen when it came out, but also won over fountain pen enthusiasts with its smooth writing action, classic looks, and low price.

2016-06-07T09:30:22-04:00 2016-06-07T09:33:42-04:00 Kristin
<![CDATA[New Products: Field Notes Sweet Tooth, FriXion Stamps, Stabilo 68, MT Washi Tapes, Tape Cutters, and More!]]> JetPens New Arrivals

New products are in!

This week's new arrivals are sure to satisfy your sweet tooth! Choose from fruity pocket notebooks, yummy erasable stamps, colorful markers, and whimsical washi tapes.

2016-06-02T10:29:09-04:00 2016-06-02T14:18:53-04:00 Miriam
<![CDATA[Thoughtful Wedding Favors that Won’t Break the Bank]]>
Wedding Favors

For those who want to send their guests home with more than a full belly and a smile, wedding favors are a great way to show your appreciation.]]>

2016-05-31T09:18:26-04:00 2016-05-31T09:18:26-04:00 Kristin
<![CDATA[Pen Perks: Father's Day Giveaway]]>

Show your father how much you appreciate him with this classy set! Featuring the rugged Render K and a spiffy leatherette notebook to match, we're giving this set away to one lucky winner.

2016-05-27T16:53:21-04:00 2016-05-27T16:53:21-04:00 Miriam
<![CDATA[New Products: Regal Pen Folio, Zipper Pouches, Leonardt Dip Pen Nibs and Nib Holders, and More!]]> JetPens New Arrivals

New products are in!

Sleek, smart, and sophisticated, this week's arrivals add a touch of class to any stationery collection. Keep reading to find out more.

2016-05-26T10:45:41-04:00 2016-05-26T10:46:49-04:00 Miriam
<![CDATA[Guide to Brush Pens for Comics]]>
Brush Pen For Comics

Sherlock Holmes would agree—there's nothing elementary about the way a brush pen is able to bring stories to life. Comic artists often rely on brush pens to convey expression and movement in a way that technical drawing pens cannot. Although it takes a certain amount of practice and dexterity to wield these tools, you don't have to be Picasso to appreciate their utility. Keep reading to find out what brush pens we enjoy using to draw comics.

2016-05-24T11:02:01-04:00 2016-05-24T11:03:37-04:00 Miriam
<![CDATA[Q&A with Waldmann CEO Stefan Schnirch]]>
Q&A with Waldmann CEO Stefan Schnirch

Nestled in the Black Forest town of Pforzheim, the Waldmann company has been hand crafting exquisite pens and pencils since 1918. Made famous for their revolutionary twist-action multi pens and pencils, today they are particularly known for their distinguished collection of writing instruments made from solid sterling silver. We had the pleasure of interviewing Waldmann CEO Stefan Schnirch about the about the company’s history and philosophy, as well as his personal recommendations on caring for sterling silver pens.

2016-05-24T09:39:48-04:00 2016-05-24T09:40:07-04:00 Ryan