I’m on the home stretch here, and I should have access to my stationery stash and review samples once again by early next week when office renovation work is mostly completed. In the meantime, I thought I would take this brief respite to discuss some of the resources I’ve been building out here over the past year. Since The Gentleman Stationer recently turned eight (8) years old (!!!???!!!), in addition to figuring out how to make the site sustainable over the long-term, and to set T.G.S. up for future growth, a core focus of mine has been organizing nearly a decade’s worth of content in a way that’s accessible to readers both new and old. This has turned into a much larger project than anticipated, so expect more developments to come.
I enjoy using Squarespace as a platform, but it’s search and archiving functions leave something to be desired. I’ve long wanted to offer a means by which readers could search past reviews, sorted by brand. As it turns out, I discovered that the only real way to do this was by manually combing back through past reviews and building it myself. This expanded index currently only includes fountain pens, but a non-fountain pen version (and hopefully, an ink index) is in the works!
Note: For those of you who want an easy way to search reviews of a specific pen beyond The Gentleman Stationer, check out Pennaquod, a Pen Blog search engine run by our friend Ian Hedley. For example, if you’re looking to compare reviews on, say, the Lamy 2000, Pennaquod will draw on dozens of different pen websites to get you the information you need.
While a guide like this can never truly be comprehensive, since definitions of what is “fountain pen friendly” vary from person to person, paper formulations change, and new papers constantly enter the market. That said, I’ve tried to maintain this as a “living” post with a vibrant comments section, so in addition to the papers I have listed in the post itself, be sure to review the comments for additional suggestions. (A word of warning – they are just that, comments and suggestions. I’ve not used nearly all of the different types of paper mentioned in the comments.)
Separately from the Fountain Pen Review Archive, I’ve consolidated my “Workhorse Pens” reviews and recommendations onto a single page. “Workhorse Pen” is the name I give to those pens that make the best everyday writers, and nearly all of these have remained in my personal collection and in rotation. Similarly, the “Resources” navigation bar
For a bit more in-person interaction, consider joining the T.G.S. Patreon Program. In addition to “behind-the-scenes” content and early access to exclusive and limited edition products in the shop, Patrons can participate in a monthly meetup (via Zoom) where we discuss topics of interest to the community, the latest releases, and pretty much anything of interest to enthusiasts. There’s also a lot of free exchange of advice and recommendations. Meetups typically take place on the third Saturday of every month, at around 8pm Central Time. We’d love to have you join us!
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