Ink Review: Iroshizuku Yama-guri (Wild Chestnut)


Pilot Iroshizuku Yama-guri - June 2015 Ink Drop
Pen: Lamy Al Star (F)
Paper: Rhodia Dotpad 80gsm
Shading: low
Saturation: high
Flow: wet
Dry Time: 14 seconds
Waterproofness: only the black undertone

The fourth ink in this month's Ink Drop is Iroshizuku Yama-guri.  Yama-guri, or Wild Chestnut, is an apt name for this ink, which fits right in with the Farmer's Market theme.  A warm, dark brown, the ink reminds me of milk chocolate.

Yama-guri is a very well behaved ink, as is typical of the Iroshizuku inks.  No feathering or bleed occurred in my Rhodia pad, even with the flex nib.  The ink is pretty highly saturated, so there was minimal shading, though I've found that to be the case with a lot of the darker brown inks.  Dry time was a tiny bit high at 14 seconds, and water test shows the only portion of the ink that stays behind is a dark grey or black color.

Chromatography had quite a few colors in the mix - the greyish-black base stayed put, which makes sense based on my water tests.  then there is a dusty purple,, followed by a bit of orange, yellow and pink.  The chroma sheet was nearly identical to the Kobe #3 Sepia I did a few days ago.

Speaking of #3 Sepia, this ink definitely resembles that ink on the page.  In swab form, Sepia is a little more reddish than Yama-guri, but on the page the resemblence is closer.  Yama-guri is a tiny bit lighter with certain nibs.  KWZI Green Gold has some similar brown tones, but is quite different on the page.

I am actually really warming up to some of the brown inks out there.  Yama-guri is definitely one to check into if you're looking for a good brown ink to add to your collection.  You can get a full size bottle for $28 at most US retailers, or you can get the smaller 15mL bottle for $10.50 from Vanness Pens.

Thanks for reading!

Ink Review: Iroshizuku Ina-ho


Iroshizuku Ina-ho (Rice ear) 
Pen: Lamy Safari (F)
Paper: Rhodia Dotpad 80gsm
Shading: high
Saturation: low to medium
Flow: wet
Dry Time: 9 seconds

I've had my eye on Iroshizuku Ina-ho for quite some time now.  I always looked at it whenever I placed an order, but never got a sample.  For some reason the color was different enough to draw my attention, and eventually I did break down and get a sample.  I am very glad that I did.

Ina-ho or "rice ear" is a very unique ink.  Its a pale brown color with some distinct gold tones and is an AMAZING shader.  I would never have thought that I'd fall for a brown ink, but I really love this one.  I love it so much that I may end up getting a full bottle.


Aside from it's awesome shading characteristics, Ina-ho has a great dry time at around 9 seconds from my Lamy F nib.  Being an Iroshizuku ink, it flows very nicely and doesn't feather or bleed in the slightest.  The ink really glides across the paper, which is a big draw for me.

Chromatography was very interesting for this ink.  It has some blue, pink and yellow - if you're into easter colors, you'll love the chroma sheet!


You're getting some sneak previews of inks I haven't reviewed yet here, but Ina-ho compares closest to Noodler's Rome Burning as far as the inks I currently have.  I haven't decided yet which one I like better, but I'm thinking Ina-ho will win out.


All in all, Ina-ho turned out to be a very pleasant surprise for me.  I think I'll look into checking out more gold & brown ink colors.  If you're interested in a bottle for yourself, you can get the full size bottle for $28, or a mini bottle (15mL) for between $10.50 or $14 at Vanness Pens or JetPens respectively.

Ink Review: Pilot Iroshizuku Chiku-rin


Pilot Iroshizuku Chiku-rin
Pen: Kaweco Brass F
Paper: Rhodia Dotpad 80gsm
Shading: moderate
Saturation: medium
Flow: medium
Dry Time: 9 seconds

I've always been a big fan of green, and my boyfriend and I have really been enjoying the Iroshizuku line of inks; so I figured it was time to pick up a sample of Chiku-rin and see how I liked it.  It definitely didn't disappoint.

Chiku-rin translates to "bamboo forest," which is actually a very fitting description of the color of this ink.  The shade of green very much resembles a stick of fresh bamboo.  I love the mild shading properties this ink has, even with a fine nib.  With larger nib sizes, I'd imagine the ink is quite an exceptional shader.  It's nicely saturated, but not so much so that it kills the shading, and it flows quite well.  Dry time is right around average at 9 seconds in my fine nib.

As far as comparisons to other inks I've tried, the closest I've got is Diamine Meadow.  Chiku-rin is a tiny bit lighter in color and to me, has better shading characteristics.  Meadow is a nice slightly darker medium green with rich saturation.  I tried to decide which one I like best, and honestly I just can't make that decision - I love them both!

Once again, Pilot doesn't disappoint with another great Iroshizuku ink!  If you'd like a bottle for yourself, it'll run your about $28 for the full sized bottle.  However, if you're interested in a smaller 15mL bottle, you can check out Vanness Pens - they sell the 15mL bottles for $10.50, or you can get a 3 pack for $29 that comes with a really nice display box.  I definitely plan on getting a set once I decide what my favorite Iroshizuku inks are!

Thanks for reading!

Giveaway Winner: Noodler's & Diamine Inks, Tons of Ink Samples & Nock Co. Notebooks


There were over 200 entries for this giveaway - I am humbled by the turnout and thankful for each and every reader of the blog.  I look forward to having another giveaway soon for all the awesome folks in this pen community!

Now for the fun part - the winner is.......

Congratulations Janis!  I'll be emailing you shortly to get your address so that I can get the package on its way to you (be sure to check your spam folder just in case)!  Thank you so much to everyone that entered - it was neat to read what everyone's favorite pens were!  If you're curious Janis' was the Pilot E95S.