Best Pens for Scrapbooking: JetPens Review

by Lain Ehmann on October 25, 2010

The other day, I received a lovely package from the fantastic people over at JetPens. If you aren’t familiar with the site, you MUST head over and check it out! They specialize in Japanese pens and stationery, so you know I’m all over that already. :)

Anyway, they decided that they needed to send me a little care package of pen-fun. Yahoo! They wanted me to check out some of their wares and share my opinions with you, my loyal blog readers. So here is the overview of what I received:

Are you drooling? I am!

Here’s what I received, and what I thought of it (note: I did not check out the acidity or archival quality of these pens. If that’s a concern for you, please make sure to contact the manufacturer):

Uni-ball Signo Angelic Gel Ink Pen – 0.7mm – Violet ink.

What I loved: The color, of course! Purple rocks, people. It also has a nice smooth ink flow — no skipping. Gone are the days when trying to write with a gel pen was like putting eyeliner on while driving over a potholed road (not that I’ve ever tried it, but I can imagine…)

The barrel is a standard size, and the pen is nicely weighted so it feels great in the hand.

What I didn’t like: Nothing. This pen is perfect for notes, scrapbook layouts, etc. The color is bright but not obnoxious. It shows up well on darker paper, too.

Rating: Five out of five stars! I’ll be ordering this in other colors.

Price: $1.80

Pilot Hi-Tec-C Gel Ink Pen – 0.5mm – Cosmetic Colors – Apricot Orange

What I loved: I’m a big orange fan (hey! I went to Syracuse for grad school – Go Orangement!), so I was looking forward to testing this pen out. The ink is definitely an apricot color, not a bright orange, so I appreciated the honesty in advertising! I was a little worried about the fine tip, because I’m more of a medium-tip girl. I write with a lot of pressure, so many fine-tipped pens can’t hold up. But this pen has a metal tip, so it was strong enough to bear my heavy hand. And the ink flows so nicely, there was no “skritchiness,” if you know what I mean (that’s a technical term, by the way). It’s also a heavier pen, which I liked a lot.

What I didn’t like: While I love this pen, I’m still a broader-tip fan. This one is definitely a keeper, but I’d probably order a bigger tip.

Rating: Four out of five stars

Price: $3.00

Uni-ball Signo UM-100 Gel Ink Pen – 0.5mm – black

What I loved: Every scrapper needs a great selection of black pens, and this one has won a spot on my coveted Shelf of Honor! The ink flows smoothly from the metal tip, and it’s a nice, heavy pen. High marks for this one. I probably won’t use it for journaling (read above re: medium vs. fine tips) but I will use it frequently for doodling, drawing fine lines around photos, etc.

What I didn’t like: Just that ole’ fine-tip thing. And that’s personal preference.

Rating: Four out of five stars

Price: $1.50

Pilot Plumix Fountain Pen – Medium Flat Italic Nib, Purple Body

What I loved: Oh, be still my heart! I love fountain pens. And I love purple. I fell in love with this little cutie the second I saw it — you mean, I can replace the ink cartridges? Wahoo!

What I didn’t like: Oh, so many things — I have lost sleep over this pen. First, it was very difficult to remove the twist-on cap (I actually hurt my fingers trying to untwist it). Next, I have not, despite about ten tries over a week, been able to get the ink to flow. I shook it, I dipped the nib in water, I unscrewed the barrel and gave the ink cartridge a squeeze — nothing works consistently. It will flow for a split second and then stop. Oh, rats.

Rating: One out of five stars. I don’t have the heart to give it zero stars. :(

Price: $7.25

NOTE: I received this info from Lily at JetPens: “Maybe try squeezing the cartridge a little bit more? (http://www.jetpens.com/cms.php/content/Article:_How_to_Refill_Ink_Cartridges_for_Fountain_and_Brush_and_Marker_Pens).”

I’ll give that another try!

Uni-ball Signo Broad UM-153 Gel Pen – Gold Ink

Uni-ball Signo Broad UM-153 Gel Pen – White Ink

What I loved: Any scrapbooker worth her salt knows that Signo is the name to look for when in search of a white pen. And I am so happy to say that the gold pen is just as awesome! Even, smooth ink flow, bright, vivid colors… Guess what this scrapper is using when she addresses her Christmas cards this year? ;)

What I didn’t like: Not a blamed thing. I adore these pens.

Rating: Five out of five stars.

Price: $2.25 each (the white pens are also available in a box of ten for $21.50)

Pilot Petit1 Mini Fountain Pen – Apple Green

What I loved: Apple green ink? Sign me up! And unlike the other poor fountain pen, this one started its ink flow easily and consistently. The ink is indeed a brighter spring green, rather than a dark forest green.  I also like that I can order refills. The small size was a bit of a concern, but the cap sits nicely on the end of the pen when writing, so it feels just fine.

What I didn’t like: I am getting a bit of ink leakage inside the cap, but nothing has spilled out onto my desk or hand.

Rating: Four out of five stars.

Price: $4.50

Pilot Envelope Address Writing Gel Ink Pen – Fine

What I loved: Just looking at this pen makes me happy! I love the bold black kanji characters on the barrel, and the little envelope graphics. Because OF COURSE we need a special pen just for addressing envelopes, right? The ink flow is perfect, the nib is perfect… I’m in love. The perfect all-purpose pen for journaling, notes, etc. If you can only have one pen, this should be it!

What I didn’t like: Someone in my family also loved it so much they stole it from my desk. Will be reordering.

Rating: Five out of five stars.

Price: $1.80

Can you tell I’m a wee bit obsessed with writing instruments? Yep, I’m a pen addict. And I’m proud. And I bet you are, too. :)

P.S. JetPens is a sponsor for my Holiday Buying Guide next month! Make sure to sign up for my mailing list so you won’t miss it! Someone just might win a nice gift certificate (if you can pry my little hands off it).

  • Katie

    Oh thank you for the pen review. I obsess about my pens. I label them so I know when family members have stolen them. I will now be off to check them out. Big box office stores and my LSS both have a poor selection of really fine point journaling worthy pens in color.

  • Anonymous

    That is too funny! They really have some fab pens — I know you’ll enjoy shopping on their site. Let me know what you choose!

  • http://amateureconblog.blogspot.com/ speedmaster

    Nice review.

  • Pingback: A Scrapbooker’s Christmas List and Contest: Pens Galore! | Simple Scrapbooking Ideas with Lain Ehmann

  • Ellie Augustin

    Pens are my weakness & JetPens is AWESOME! My start of love of pens because when I was younger my mom worked in a pen factory where they made these cool novelty pens on Fridays she would brng my brother & I a bag of cool funky pens. OH How fun it was. I was the coolest kid in 5th grade I tell you!  So needless to say LOVE this review!

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