I jumped on another fountain pen ink bandwagon. This time with Private Reserve Inks. This ink brand has been showing up on my radar and social media feed for awhile. I did some research and found the original owner had passed away in 2018 and the remaining ink bottles at the pen shops eventually sold out. Sometime in 2019, a new owner took over the Private Reserve Inks and partnered with Yafa Brands to produce the bottles of ink.
I’ve heard there were a few issues with some of the ink colors (like mold) and that was prior to the new ownership/management taking over this line of ink. I have not seen nor heard of any recent issues with the new inks.
I naturally wanted to get a teal and a pinky/raspberry/purple ink. I ended up selecting Blue Suede, Arabian Rose, Shoreline Gold, and Naples Blue to try out. Another ink color is arriving later in the week and I will be adding this ink color to this blog post.
I initially swatched the colors on my Col-o-ring card and in my Stalogy 365 ink journal. I was amazed at the bright and bold ink colors that popped on the paper. Some slight bleeding occurred on the Col-o-ring card which is normal for me to see. I noticed that the ink was quite wet and my automatic pen saturated my swatch cards.
When I did my swatches in my Stalogy ink journal, I immediately noticed the feathering around the edges of the ink. This was the first time I experienced a huge amount of feathering on this paper. I flipped through the pages of my ink journal to see if I have experienced this with any other ink manufacturer or maybe an ink color. Private Reserve Inks are the only ones feathering.
I inked two pens to see if I would see similar feathering when I write with my fountain pens. I selected my two Taccia Spectrum pens. One with an Extra Fine nib and the other with a Medium nib. I also cleaned my Estie OS and filled it with Arabian Rose.
As expected, writing with the Extra Fine nibs hardly shows any feathering. Writing with my Medium nib, I could see a bit of feathering.
As expected, writing on my Tomoe River Paper (TRP) did not show any feathering.
Here’s another writing sample using my Ayush Paper. I’m starting to come down from my fence with this paper. I like writing on this paper and especially with my Pilot Parallel pens. That’s another post for another day.
So I have a slight issue with Private Reserve’s jar. It’s a round squatty shaped jar. When I placed my pen into the bottle to fill with ink, I noticed there was not a whole lot of space between the tip of my nib and the bottom of the jar. Eventually, I will have to decant the ink into my Pineider or Visconti travel inkwells. I just remembered I have a few TWSBI inkwells that I could use. A better solution.
Update: A late add to this blog entry. Here’s my fifth bottle that arrived late. Lovely color!
I will have to spend more time with this ink brand. That includes creating a few pen and ink wash artwork to see how this ink behaves on different art paper. The ink colors are definitely gorgeous with a lot of sheen and shading characteristics I enjoy seeing.
Inks: Private Reserve Inks in Shoreline Gold, Blue Suede, Arabian Rose, Naples Blue, and Copper Burst
Papers: Col-o-ring swatch cards, Ayush Paper, GLP Creations TRP journal, and Stalogy 365 B6 journal
3 thoughts on “Private Reserve Inks”
I remember Private Reserve fondly from about 30 years ago and I still have that bottle of chocolat ink. So I was excited to get multiple samples of the new iteration. All nine samples were disappointing. I found them flat and uninspiring on the page when written. You can make any ink look pretty with a swatch of color but a true test of ink is in how it writes and these inks were just like writing with liquid chalk. So yucky and boring. I will not be ordering any Private Reserve inks again.
LikeLiked by 1 person
I am on the fence with Private Reserve Inks in general. Especially, the more I use them. There is one or two that I do like. I could not put my finger on why I could not feel the love for these inks until you mentioned they are flat and like “liquid chalk” and pretty much accurate descriptions. I do notice a lot of feathering on my Stalogy paper. I will still use these inks for mainly creating art. Thanks for your feedback and insight.
yes, I do agree they are useful for creating art! 🙂