Ink Demands of Pens

There was a time, not long ago, that I would decide what pen and ink to use as independent decisions. Even though I had a limited selection of inks, that wasn’t the reason, it was simply that each was an independent decision.

I’m not sure when this began to change, but it became apparent at the end of last year. At that time I was still just shopping for pens at the end of the year. I had decided on the pen. As I was deciding on the color I thought to myself – I’ll get the “Claret Stone” (Red) color because I need a pen for maroon and brown inks.  That was the realization that I was matching inks to pens.

I’m not talking about matching a specific ink to a pen because it flows well with the pen. I’m picking the color to complement the personality of the pen.

Sometimes it’s just a logical choice and it is because the color matches the pen. A deep black ink makes sense for a Sailor Imperial Black or Pilot Matte Black pen. But every day black pens don’t demand black ink. While there are those who do try to match the actual shade of both the pen and the ink, that wasn’t what I wanted to do. At least it isn’t at this point, but I seem to be heading down that path.

Some of my choices had only a weak aesthetic argument, rather they just seem right for the pen.

  • My Chrome Vanishing Point likes red ink for some reason, yet my other silver & aluminum pens don’t have the same preference.
  • The Woodgrain, lever fill, vintage looking Marlborough Vintage likes black ink but can handle brown.
  • My Caran D’Ache Ivanhoe, another silver pen, does like red ink but likes any bright ink so often has purple. This is probably more about the way I use the pen than any ink affinity that it has.

Lately I have drifted more towards matching ink colors to pens. My woodgrain pens tend to get brown, my reddish pens get red. My daily carry pen with green ink is usually green. At least demonstrators give me a choice.

Do you match pen to ink?