fountain pen

20 March, 2024

Reviving the Art of Letter Writing: Choosing the Perfect Pen.

In today’s whirlwind of instant messaging and emails, there’s something utterly charming and profoundly personal about receiving a handwritten letter. It’s like getting a small piece of someone’s day, thoughts, and time wrapped up in an envelope. So, if you’re thinking of reviving the art of letter writing, kudos to you! Now, let’s chat about one of the key players in this endeavour: the pen.

Choosing the perfect pen for your notes is not just about the ink; it’s about how it makes you feel and the statement it makes about your letter-writing style.

Feel the Grip, Feel the Magic
When it comes to the comfort of writing, the grip of your pen is pivotal. You know that feeling when you’re halfway through a heartfelt passage and your hand starts to feel like it’s done a full workout? Not ideal. That's why the grip is not just a feature; it's a lifeline for those who love to write.

Imagine a promotional pen that just nestles comfortably between your fingers, almost as if it's an extension of your own thoughts. That’s what you're looking for. Pens with ergonomic designs that cater to the natural hold of your hand can make the act of writing effortless and smooth. The grip should be such that it prevents your fingers from sliding down as you write, which is not just about comfort, but also about control.

Cushioned grips are a gem in the world of writing instruments. They are typically made from soft materials like silicone or rubber that can absorb some of the pressure from your writing. This is particularly important for those marathon writing sessions—like when you’re inspired to write a series of postcards from your Aussie beach holiday or a lengthy journal entry reflecting on the day.

And don't be fooled into thinking that a cushy grip is only a concern for those who write a lot. Even for quick notes, a good grip can prevent that indentation on your fingers that you get from pressing too hard. We've all been there, and it's not a fond memory.

Some go a step further, with grips that are contoured to fit the natural shape of your fingers. These can be a real game-changer, especially if you have a specific way you like to hold your pen. It's like it was made just for you.

And here's a thought—don't shy away from trying out a few different types. What feels right in someone else’s hand might not be the magic match for you. Maybe you’ll find that a thicker, beefier grip is your style, or perhaps you’ll go for something slender and subtle.

The bottom line: when you find that perfect grip, writing becomes less of a task and more of a delight. Your thoughts can flow freely, your hand remains unstrained, and the whole experience is just... well, magical.

Pen Nibs

A Nib that Dances to Your Tune
The nib is where the true alchemy of writing happens. It’s not just a piece of metal; it's the point where your thoughts are translated into tangible form, dancing across the page. The right nib can make writing feel like a symphony, where each word is a note played to perfection.

For those who relish the classic elegance of writing, the fountain pen stands as an unrivalled champion. With a fountain pen, you’re not just writing; you’re engaging in a time-honoured tradition. The nib doesn’t just scratch the paper; it waltzes over it. It allows for an expressiveness in writing that modern ballpoints can struggle to match. The width and wetness of the line can articulate the mood and tempo of your writing, something typewritten text could never hope to capture.

Choosing a nib size is a very personal choice, akin to selecting the right instrument for your solo performance. The fine nib, with its sharp precision, is excellent for those who have a lighter touch or smaller handwriting. It's ideal for annotations, marginalia, or fitting thoughts into the tight confines of a postcard.

On the flip side, a broad nib is like a paintbrush, bold and expressive. It’s perfect for signatures or when you want to make a statement that’s visually impactful. It’s also a joy for those with a heavier hand in writing, providing a satisfying sensory feedback with every stroke.

But let's not forget, the nib should also suit your pace. If you’re a rapid writer, a nib that keeps up with your speed without skipping is crucial. Conversely, if you’re more contemplative, pondering over every word, a nib that won’t dry out as you pause is essential.

And for those special notes - the ones you want to stand the test of time - consider a nib that’s made of sturdier stuff, like gold or titanium, which can provide not only a superior writing experience but also the longevity to keep your words flowing for years to come.

In the end, the dance of the nib across your paper should feel effortless, as if it’s responding to your every whim, creating a script that’s as individual as a strand of DNA. When you find that nib, the one that sings in tune with your writing style, it’s akin to finding a writing partner for life.

Ink Colours

Ink: The Colour of Your Thoughts
Ink isn't just a medium for your words; it's the visual manifestation of your thoughts, and the colour you choose can speak volumes before you've even crafted a sentence. Traditionalists may lean towards the stately blues and the authoritative blacks, colours that have graced documents and correspondence for centuries, evoking a sense of reliability and respect.

But what if your words aren't just meant to be read but felt? That's where the allure of unconventional ink colours comes into play. Vibrant purples can add a regal touch to your notes, while greens can bring a sense of tranquillity and freshness. And for those moments when your words need to burst forth with unabashed vivacity, a sassy pink can lend a playful tilt to your script.

The shade of ink you select can set the tone for your message. A subdued grey might convey professionalism and subtlety, whereas a fiery red can deliver the intensity and urgency of your words. It's not just about writing; it's about painting with language, and each colour adds a different hue to the emotions you wish to convey.

Yet, practicality must also play a part in your choice. Consider the ink's drying time — an often overlooked aspect that can have smudging consequences, particularly for the left-handed scribes. Fast-drying inks are a must if you want to avoid the disappointment of a beautifully written letter marred by smears. Some inks are formulated to dry almost on contact, ensuring that your prose remains pristine, no matter how quickly your thoughts flow.

And let's not forget about the permanence of your chosen ink. For archival notes or documents of importance, an ink that resists fading and water damage ensures your words stand the test of time, holding as true in colour as they do in meaning.

Ultimately, the ink you choose is as much a part of your personal brand as your handwriting. It's an opportunity to leave a mark as distinctive as a wax seal. So dip your pen with intention, and let the colour of your ink declare the flavour of your thoughts.

Style: More Than Just Writing
Style is an extension of personality, not just in the clothes we wear or the way we decorate our space, but right down to the very tools we use to express our thoughts. When you unsheathe your pen to write, it’s not just a writing instrument you’re displaying — it’s a snippet of your identity.

For the modern minimalist, one with a sleek, metallic finish and clean lines fits seamlessly into a contemporary lifestyle, making a subtle yet impactful statement of 'chic' sophistication. It’s for those who appreciate the ‘less is more’ philosophy, where every accessory is chosen with purpose and intention.

Conversely, if you’re someone who yearns for the romance of bygone eras, a vintage fountain pen can be your time machine. With its intricate designs and nib that flirts with the paper, such a pen isn’t merely a tool; it's a piece of history cradled in your hand, a 'retro cool' emblem that connects you to the literary giants of the past.

It can serve as an icebreaker, too. Imagine pulling one out inlaid with mother-of-pearl or crafted from vibrant resins — it's bound to catch an eye and perhaps prompt a discussion over a shared appreciation for finer details.

For some, it is more than a writing device; it's a legacy. A well-crafted one, passed down through generations, becomes an heirloom that carries stories and memories in every scratch of ink it has laid down. It becomes imbued with a family history that enriches its every use.

And for the professional, the right one can be a signature of their brand, as distinctive as a monogram. It's the flourish at the end of a signed contract, the personal touch on a handwritten note amidst digital noise. It’s a testament to the value placed on the personal touch in an impersonal world.

In essence, it is not just about what it leaves on the page. It's about the statement it makes when it's still in your pocket, the conversations it sparks when it's laid on the table, and the tradition it upholds when it's passed on. It’s a fashion accessory, a historical artefact, and a personal emblem all rolled into one. So when you choose your pen, remember — you're not just selecting a writing tool; you’re curating an aspect of your visible persona.


Durability for the Long Haul
When diving into the realm of letter writing, we're talking about a commitment that's more marathon than sprint. The pen you choose should be a reliable partner, steadfast through thick and thin. Durability, therefore, becomes not just a feature but a necessity.

Think of it as choosing a friend who will accompany you through the various chapters of your life. You want a pen that's robust, one that can handle the ebb and flow of daily life, from the frenzied scribbles of a sudden epiphany to the deliberate strokes of a thoughtful letter.

Investing in one that's built to withstand the test of time is akin to selecting a piece of classic furniture — it's about quality, craftsmanship, and materials that grow more distinguished with age. The brass that develops a patina over time, the nib that adjusts to your writing style, the barrel that bears the marks of your grip — all these elements combine to tell a story.

A good one with high durability is not just an instrument but a legacy in the making. It's the one you'll reach for when inspiration strikes, the one you'll lend with hesitation (and maybe a bit of anxiety), and the very one you'll pass down as a cherished keepsake.

While it may mean allocating a little more of your budget initially, a durable pen doesn't just pay for itself in longevity; it becomes a treasured artifact of your personal history, a testament to the enduring power of the written word. So, as you select yours, consider it an investment not just in your writing but in your future self, the one who looks back with appreciation at the choice you made for a companion on this literary journey.

Practice Makes Perfect
Embarking on the delightful journey of letter writing, the final and perhaps most critical step before sealing the deal with your new pen pal (pun intended) is to give it a whirl. The importance of a test run cannot be understated. Just as you would never dream of purchasing a car without feeling its grip on the road, selecting a pen warrants the same level of trial.

Pop into a stationery store and court a variety of them. Hold them in your grasp, feel their weight, balance, and texture. Glide them across the paper and observe the trail they leave behind. It's this ritual that will unveil the one that resonates with your touch and compliments your script.

The flow of ink, the movement of the nib, the effortless way it should dance across the page—this is its audition for a role in your daily script. The feedback from the paper, the consistency of the ink, and the ease of the strokes will tell you much about the future you could share together.

And just like any worthwhile practice, finding the perfect one is an exercise in patience and attention to detail. What might feel alien at first could become familiar with time. But there’s also the chance of that instant connection, where it meets paper in a moment of pure synchronicity.

So, remember, while you're seeking out the perfect one for your letters, you're not just looking for a tool - you're looking for an extension of your self-expression, a partner in the art of communication. Give yourself the time to explore, and when you find the right match, you'll just know - it's the one that will help transform your thoughts into words that will endure on paper.

Reviving the art of letter writing with the perfect pen is a journey back to the basics, to a time when communication was an art form. It’s about slowing down and appreciating the simple joy of connecting with someone through words on paper. So find that perfect one, grab some quality paper, and let the magic flow from your heart, through your pen, to the hands of a loved one.

Happy writing!

The Pens Only Team