Our Favorite Notebooks for Fountain Pen Use

August 22, 2012 - Posted by Elizabeth to Journals / Notebooks

Please see our Fountain Pen Paper Recommendations article for an updated list of our favorite paper for fountain pen use!

Using a fountain pen can be a wonderful experience. Fountain pens naturally require little to no pressure to write with, and can literally glide across pages of the right paper. Believe it or not, there is such a thing as fountain-pen-compatible paper.

Among the many notebooks and journals available at JetPens, I’ve listed a few of my personal favorites that perform beautifully with fountain pen ink.

Note: You can click on all photos to view a larger, more detailed shot.

Maruman Mnemosyne Notebooks

My everyday go-to notebooks are found in the Maruman Mnemosyne line (named after the Greek goddess for memory). Available in a wide variety of versatile sizes and formats, the Maruman Mnemosyne notebooks contain a thick, creamy paper that has a smooth surface. Blank, lined, and graph pages are offered, and this paper provides a wonderful writing experience for fountain pens, as well as other pen types.

No visible feathering.

Reverse side of page: No bleed-through, shadow of writing barely visible.

Maruman Boston Notebooks

Another paper gem from Maruman is the Boston Notebook. The Maruman Boston notebooks were designed specifically with fountain pen use in mind, and contain high-quality lined paper that has a good weight and smooth surface. Out of all the notebooks tested the Boston has the best results against bleed-through, not showing even the slightest shadow of the writing on the other side of the page!
No visible feathering.

Reverse side of page: No bleed-through, nor visible shadow of writing.

Kokuyo Campus High Grade CYO-BO Notebooks

The Kokuyo Campus notebook line has always been immensely popular here at JetPens, and the High Grade CYO-BO paper is one of the best I’ve used. This is the thickest Kokuyo paper we stock, and is perfect for all types of pens.
No visible feathering.

Reverse side of page: No bleed-through, shadow of writing barely visible.

Rhodia Webnotebooks

The Clairefontaine paper found in Rhodia notebooks has an excellent quality reputation. This French paper has a smooth surface, and the Dot Grid Webnotebook tested had no bleed-through whatsoever. The ink barely even shows through on the other side of the page.
No visible feathering.

Reverse side of page: No bleed-through, shadow of writing barely visible.

Maruman Eco Notebooks

For the environmentally-conscious writer, the Maruman Eco Spiral notebooks are a great choice. These notebooks are FSC-certified, ensuring that the forest products used are from responsibly-harvested, verified sources. The ruling on each page is printed with eco-friendly ink, and the material used for coating the spiral binding wire is biodegradable! Although the paper is not as thick as the other Maruman items listed, it does not cause any feathering and bleed-through is minimal.
No visible feathering.

Reverse side of page: No bleed-through, shadow of writing hardly visible.

Feathering and Bleed-through

The papers described above help prevent two problems that often occur when using fountain pens on low quality paper: feathering and bleed-through.
Writing is feathered, especially at end points of nib contact to paper.

As shown above, the term “feathering” means that the ink spreads beyond the areas of application, usually along the paper’s fibers. This can give your lettering a spiky or fuzzy look, preventing crisp clean lines.
Bleed-through is very visible.

Bleed-through is very visible, especially at end points of nib contact to paper where writing is feathered.

“Bleed-through” is a frequent occurrence with thin papers, where you can see your writing clearly on the other side of a page as demonstrated in the above photos.

Final Words

Asking a fountain pen user to name her favorite paper is akin to asking a fashionista about her favorite outfit. Answers will vary, and there are other factors that contribute to varying fountain pen performance: ink formula, nib size, writing style etc. This list only covers our top choices, but most of the journals and notebooks offered at JetPens work well with fountain pens. What is YOUR favorite paper to use with fountain pens?
Note: I’ve used the fine nib Platinum Preppy pen with its included black ink, and the broad nib Kaweco Special AL filled with a J. Herbin Violette Pensee ink cartridge for every writing test pictured above.

------------------------------JetPens Giveaway------------------------------

This contest has ended. Like JetPens on Facebook to find more giveaways every month!

------------------------------JetPens Giveaway------------------------------
Fountain pen fun on notebooks! Here's your chance to win a Maruman Boston Notebook and a Maruman Eco Notebook.

1. Entries will be accepted from now until Friday, August 24, 2012 at Midnight Pacific.
2. One winner will be selected from all entries and announced here on Saturday, August 25, 2012 on our blog.

How to Enter:
1. Leave a comment on this post.
2. Increase your chances of winning by helping us spread the word about this column. You can submit up to three additional entries by sharing this post through the social media buttons on the bottom of this post. You can Tweet about this post, post it to your Facebook wall, and/or share it on Google Plus.
3. For each additional entry, make sure to leave a separate comment on this post.
4. You can have a total of four entries in this contest provided that you leave additional comments after sharing this post through the aforementioned social media outlets.

Thanks for participating!

comments powered by Disqus