Tiger Pens Blog
The revelation of the WINKpen could put a whole new slant on the phrase written in blood. Invented by Oregan based designer Jessica Chan this pen can guzzle up a variety of liquids & was made possible by crowd funding on Kickstarter.
The pursuit of creating something that could be re-used & reduce waste from some of the many plastic cases from the disposable alternatives ending up in landfill, took Jess on a journey taking some 18 months of her spare time.
Presented as reusable & long lasting this refillable glass fountain pens name came about from an idea of using wine as ink. Inspired during research for another project Industrial Designer Jess says she learned that “inks used in traditional printers are not 100% biodegradable” this led to her wanting to create a sustainable alternative that we use in everyday life.
The WINKpen is constructed to be flexible & as user friendly as possible with the components fitting together easily making them easy to clean. The glass nib is double sided & can be used for all types of penmanship. Apparently glass eliminates the corrosion sometimes experienced with metal or ballpoint tips used in traditional pens whilst making it an easy to clean option. Now unless your entering into some type of medieval pact with the devil it's unlikely that you'd want your blood to be used for anything other than running through the veins but as well as wine liquids like tea, juice or anything with a staining property can be put in this pen.
This week is Tiger Pens 5th birthday and to celebrate this we are giving away 10% off everything. Simply use the discount code TP5BL10 at the checkout to receive your 10% discount but hurry it is only valid until the 1st of June 2015.
If you have a minute, you definitely should check out the recent ode to the Uniball Signo UM-151 in the New York Times magazine.
Tom Vanderbilt's piece "Letter of Recommendation" describes how he was fairly indifferent to pens until a friend talked him into trying inexpensive Japanese gel pens.
He eventually fell in love with the black-ink UM-151 with the .038 mm point. Now, his praise of the pen is effusive and lyrical: Continue reading
So you've decided to try & improve your handwriting, make it look a little less like a spider has crawled across the page & lets just say more legible.
We've all heard the arguments about technology taking over & that handwriting is no longer important. Maybe it's a generation thing but I'm sure I'm not alone finding it faster & easier to jot down a note with a pen than reaching for the mobile & tapping the keypad.
When practicing, sitting at a table is better than in your favourite armchair or sofa. You'll be able to sit up with a straight back, your feet planted on the floor with uncrossed legs. Next relax your hand & arm, it's an idea to loosen up by twisting your wrist a few times & do a few stretching exercises as writing will also use muscles in the shoulders & forearms. Avoid writing to the left of your palm (more likely if your left handed) as this is likely to give you cramp. If this is something you are inclined to get there are a wide range of ergonomic pens< available to help. 2. Watch Your Speed
Something many people do (me included) is write as if they're in a race against the clock. By taking time to concentrate on every letter you will see much better results.
Practice your scribbles, this will help train the hand & eye to work together, it can have the added benefit of providing a little light relief if you've had a stressful day or meeting.
4. Keep a Diary or Journal
Whether it's keeping a note of the days events or recording your innermost thoughts a daily diary or journal entry will give you good reason to practise your writing. Just a few minutes little & often will not only help improve your penmanship but could provide health benefits like improving emotional well being or reducing stress.
5. Loosen Your Grip
It can be tempting to hold the pen too tightly. Rather than squeezing the barrel imagine your pen is a quill that may break & lightly pull it across the page.
When trying to improve your handwriting it may look worse before it gets better but with practice & perseverance you're sure to achieve a style that you are happy with.
Pentel's mission is to develop pens offering a satisfying writing experience & value for money, this plastic fountain pen does seem to have both.
From flexible to firm depending on how you hold the pen & the amount of pressure used, the delta shaped double sided nib on the Pentel Stylo Plastic Fountain Pen will produce variable line widths.
This pen has a white barrel with brightly coloured logo's & branding, they are available with red, black or blue water based ink & each has a colour coded end cap & tip housing.
The Stylo JM11 nib is not fussed which angle you hold it at delivering a flexible response on one side whilst the other is more rigid.
This Pentel's nib will wear to the style of the writer over time & thereby offers a unique writing experience.
The Uni-ball Signo TSI contains a new generation of specially formulated thermo sensitive ink. By using the pens eraser the rubbing action causes friction making the coloured ink change to clear hence rendering it invisible.
This pen has two eraser's one on the cap another on the end which is ideal for those that like to post the cap on a pen as there is no need to keep removing the cap to erase errors. The Thermo Sensitive gel Ink could re-appear if used in temperatures below -18°C but in normal conditions a vigorous rub will enable you to erase & rewrite anything.
The Signo TSI Erasable Rollerball Pen has a 0.7mm tip & there are 7 vivid colours to choose from including violet, sky blue & pink.
This is a question I sometimes ask myself when tidying my desk for the umteenth time. When I mentioned it recently to a friend she replied you don't have too many pens you just don't write enough! Never thought of it that way maybe she has a point.
There's so much written about the demise of handwriting as we use technology more & more. This is brought more to our attention this year the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta, as this ancient document stands the test of time its clear that the ability to put pen to paper still has a place in 2015.
Some of the benefits of writing by hand include helping your focus. It's easier to concentrate sitting with a pen & paper. When writing at a computer the temptation to flick from emails, facebook & the like can be almost impossible to ignore.
As well as being a workout for your hand research suggests that engaging your motor skills helps with memory & it's also a good cognitive exercise & helps keep the brain sharp.
Despite some citing the death of handwriting by technology, organisations like the National Handwriting Association exist to raise awareness. If like us you still like using pens & pencils, this charity runs courses & events & has lots of advice available through its web site from things like handwriting case studies to a list of practical books that can be purchased for a small fee.
There are also events like World Stationery Day to be held on 29th April which will celebrate the power of the written word. This is part of National Stationery Week, a leading trade exhibition in the UK. Last year saw libraries taking part in a writing competition, lesson plans were compiled aiming to inspire schools to get involved, it was deemed to be a great success generating in excess of £5 million worth of media coverage. This years event will take place between 27th April & 3rd May & with organisers aiming to get people talking about writing & their favourite products I doubt too many pens will be a topic of conversation.
Here at Tiger Pens we all like reading other peoples pen & paper related blogs. Here are a few posts that have caught our eye recently. We hope you enjoy them as much as we did.
If you like FP sketches then head over to Parka Blogs where Teoh has written a comprehensive review of the Sailor Cross Music Emperor Nib Fountain Pen & included a host of sketches
Read why Goodwriters pens are delighted with the Jinhao 599A
While Joshua at The Pelican's Perch concludes the review of Pelikan’s M805 anthracite Stresemann was mainly positive, he did find some small inconveniences you can read about
Read how Tim from The Wirecutter reached the conclusion that the uni-ball Jetstream is a fantastic, affordable pen.
Goldspot Pens honour Draw a Bird Day on thier #writeitwednesday challenge check it out here
Maybelline reviews a Delta Blue Tech & Web commenting that “I can’t help but be reminded of a car when I look at it” you can read why On Fountain Pens
Brian finds the Platinum Preppy to be a great beginner pen, you can read why on the Office Supply Geek blog
Stephanie asks Does Size Matter? In a post of feedback on various Rhodia pads At Rhodia Drive
According to NHS stats there are around 10 million people in the UK suffering from arthritis of one form or another, worldwide it's thought to affect as many as 350 million. That's a lot of people challenged on a daily basis with everyday tasks that many of us take in our stride. One of these happens to be writing & help is at hand with a number of different ranges of ergonomically designed pens & pencils.
PenAgain is a range of pens & pencils designed with a Y shaped cradle resembling a wishbone. This uses the natural weight of the hand to relieve pressure on the fingers, more details can be found in an earlier post here
Pilot's Dr Grip brand has ballpoints, mechanical pencils & a multi function pen combining 4 different colour ballpoints & a 0.5mm pencil. These pens & pencils have received one of the Arthritis Foundation's Ease-of-Use Commendations having been independently tested by experts & assessed by people with the condition.
The Pilot Dr Grip G-Spec Mechanical Pencil has a 0.5mm lead & is available in a wide range of colours including soft blue, pink & green frost. The grip has a double layer making it secure & comfortable to use.
EZ Grip is another range designed with an simple to hold grip that requires a minimal amount of pressure.
There is no right or wrong way to hold these pens, users can hold the side of the thumb or switch positions & use others fingers, we all write differently, the choice is yours.
Yoropen was inspired by inventor Liu Bao Shen's daughters as he observed problems due to poor grip & posture.
Today the range includes ballpoint pens & pencils, coloured refills are available for the standard & Yoropen Mini Pencils. The tips angled design helps the user to see what they are writing & the offset finger support helps reduce strain, these pens & pencils are suitable for left & right handed writers.
Ergonomic pens & pencils don't just benefit those with arthritis, they can help people with difficulties arising from conditions like carpal tunnel syndrome, repetitive strain injury or those that just write a lot by reducing stress to the joints, nerves & muscles. As ergonomics vary from one person to another there is probably no one writing instrument that will suit everyone, but hopefully you'll find something to suit. We'd be happy to hear your views!