Share this project

Done

Share this project

Done
Features ink test results with notes at a glance for artists, illustrators, writers and calligraphers
Features ink test results with notes at a glance for artists, illustrators, writers and calligraphers
12 backers pledged $756 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

Pen Palette project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound

$756

12

So Many Colorful Inks!

One of the enticing things about working with fountain pens is the ever growing, magnificent range of colorful inks that are available on the market today. There’s much to read about inks online and many pictures to admire, but nothing compares to having samples of the inks to try out and experiment with.

Playing with ink colors is so much fun!
Playing with ink colors is so much fun!

Fountain pen inks have different properties for different uses. Some shade beautifully (appear lighter and darker in places) while others have sheen (have different colors in places when dry). Many have different dry times and some won’t freeze while others fluoresce under black lights! Some are ph neutral, some are waterproof and others water soluble…. Some are permanent and won’t fade in sunlight, while others are more fugitive and perfectly suited for journaling or reproduction… and some inspire with their luscious scents of fruits and flowers.

Organize Your Inks with a Pen Palette

Chances are if you have more than a handful of ink samples, you’ll be wanting to make notes about the qualities of each that are especially useful for your projects. While extensive tests and notes can be kept in books or charts, it can save a lot of time and create a more pleasurable drawing or writing experience to have small tests and/or notes right next to the ink samples and pens in your palette.

Pen Palette with paper surface for notes
Pen Palette with paper surface for notes

The Pen Palette comes with a changable paper top for tests and/or notes. Writing the name of the ink in its position on your palette will give you a sample of the color in use. There’s also a little room for a smear test or solubility test if desired. Numbers, letters and symbols of your own devising can also denote properties of interest to you.

My Pen Palette with water solubility test and other notes
My Pen Palette with water solubility test and other notes

The Pen Pallette is designed to hold 30 ink samples or pens/brushes/drawing pencils, or a mix. The paper for the palette top is acid-free heavyweight Canson Mix Media paper, which I've found works well for both fountain pen inks and watercolor.

A mix of ink and watercolor on heavyweight Canson Mix Media paper. Some of the ink lines held their crispness while others blurred pleasingly with water, properties I could anticipate from tests done on my Pen Palette surface.
A mix of ink and watercolor on heavyweight Canson Mix Media paper. Some of the ink lines held their crispness while others blurred pleasingly with water, properties I could anticipate from tests done on my Pen Palette surface.

Annotate your Fountain Pen Ink Samples

The Pen Palette comes with sample vial cap labels made of archival Rhodia paper with acid-free adhesive. Rhodia paper is one chosen by writers to work especially well with fountain pens. It’s important to label your sample vial caps since they have residual ink in them which could contaminate other colors if placed on the wrong vials. 

Sample and name each ink using Rhodia paper labels
Sample and name each ink using Rhodia paper labels

You can use an empty fountain pen to do a dip test of a sample, or a glass pen which is easy to rinse and dry for testing many colors. Pilot Petit1 fountain pens are also available for under $4 each. They can be converted from cartridge pens to eyedropper pens for use with any fountain pen ink. These have a fine line nib and are wonderful for testing inks and for drawing!

Pilot Petit1 converted to an eyedropper displaying ink color and writing sample on a Rhodia paper label
Pilot Petit1 converted to an eyedropper displaying ink color and writing sample on a Rhodia paper label

The Pen Palette comes with slim Rhodia labels for writing ink color names for your Pilot Petit1 pen caps to keep track of what inks are in each if you have more than one set. The labels are designed to be placed lengthwise, between the two holes in the cap, and burnished down after the ink has dried. Since the pens are small in the hand you will want to post them for sufficient length (put the cap on the back of the pen while using), so the label will always provide instant identification.

You can also write the ink color names on the Pen Palette and add notes where you keep each pen while in use, the same way you would for ink samples.

By providing both a multi-media paper and a fine writing paper, you can instantly see how your inks work on each, just by looking at your palette
By providing both a multi-media paper and a fine writing paper, you can instantly see how your inks work on each, just by looking at your palette

See at a Glance which Inks are in which Fountain Pens

Another advantage of the Pen Palette is that you can have places for pens you wouldn’t want to label, while still keeping information about them handy. You can have a written sample of the ink you have in each pen along with notes about nib sizes, right next to each pen.

Know at a glance what ink color is in your pen and what nib size it has
Know at a glance what ink color is in your pen and what nib size it has

Use your Pen Palette as a Display Rack

Cherry Pen Palette without paper top
Cherry Pen Palette without paper top

Even if you like to store your fountain pens flat, the Pen Palette makes a nice display rack when your pens are in use.

 

Make Multiple Arrangements of the Colors in your Palette

The paper tops of these palettes can be used on both sides. Ink samples and pens can be moved around for different projects or you may want to rearrange them as you add more samples.

You can create different paper tops for special selections of inks for landscapes or portraits or cityscapes or animals... and then use them over and over again interchangably as desired.

Inks selected for animals drawn with fountain pens and a wet brush on heavyweight Canson Mix Media paper
Inks selected for animals drawn with fountain pens and a wet brush on heavyweight Canson Mix Media paper

Deluxe Pen Palette Specifics $65

Each Pen Palette measures 10-1/2" x 3-7/8” and has 30 positions for sample ink vials and/or pens. Pen Palettes are stackable and set into place if the lower Pen Palettes are filled or partially filled with sample vials.

Two cherry Pen Palettes stacked together
Two cherry Pen Palettes stacked together

The Deluxe Pen Palettes are made of waxed solid cherry.

32 sample vial cap labels made of Rhodia paper are included with the deluxe Pen Palettes along with 30 slim Rhodia paper labels for pens. All labels have acid-free adhesive and can be burnished into place once the ink has dried.

Cherry Pen Palettes come with 3 acid-free heavyweight Canson Mix Media paper palette tops, providing 6 sides to write on for different arrangements.

The paper tops lock into place in most positions on their cherry wood base, and are further held in place by the sample ink vials, both while capped and uncapped.

Paper top stays in place on cherry Pen Palettes even when tipped
Paper top stays in place on cherry Pen Palettes even when tipped

The Basic Pen Palette $40

Each Pen Palette measures 10-1/2" x 3-7/8” and has 30 positions for sample ink vials and/or pens. Pen Palettes are stackable and set into place if the lower Pen Palettes are filled or partially filled with sample vials.

The Basic Working Pen Palettes are made of basswood.

32 Rhodia paper sample vial cap labels with acid-free adhesive are included along with 10 slim Rhodia labels for pens.

An acid-free heavyweight Canson Mix Media paper top is provided which doesn’t lock into place but can be secured with tape or sample vials.

Basic Pen Palette with loose paper top
Basic Pen Palette with loose paper top

Where to Get Ink Samples:

www.gouletpens.com and also at www.ipenstore.com

Where to Get Pilot Petit1 Pens:

www.jetpens.com (see their video on converting PilotPetit1 pens into eyedroppers and also their video on painting with water soluble inks)

Where to Find Extensive Reviews of Different Inks and their Properties:

www.gouletpens.com and www.fountainpennetwork.com and www.clumsypenman.com among many others

www.gouletpens.com also has an extensive chart of Noodler's inks (one of many brands) filled with information about their varying properties.

Where to get Glass Pens and Empty Sample Vials for Transfering your Inks to a Pen Palette:

www.ipenstore and www.gouletpens.com 

Risks and challenges

I will make all the Pen Palettes so I won't be dependent on outside vendors. I have a good supply of wood and papers on hand. After the campaign is over I will ship Pen Palettes in order of backing as each is completed. I will keep backers posted about any delays due to volume.

My partner and collaborator, Joe Freedman, has sussessfully completed 6 Kickstarter projects.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    Basic Pen Palette

    Pen Palette made of basswood. Includes 1 heavyweight Canson Mix Media paper top for customizing your ink samples and 32 round Rhodia labels for the tops of sample vials, along with 10 rectangular Rhodia labels for pens.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 3 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $65 or more About $65

    Deluxe Cherry Pen Palette

    Pen Palette made of waxed cherry hardwood. Includes 3 heavyweight Canson Mix Media paper tops for customizing your ink samples, and 32 round Rhodia labels for the tops of sample vials, along with 32 rectangular Rhodia labels for pens.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 6 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (30 days)