Well...I just bought my first Moleskine...

Being so happy with the way my Moleskine case for my Hipster came out, I just ordered (from Amazon) a Moleskine to write down things in. Things that I'd normally talk about with my friends, but since /some people/ at my lunch table can't keep their mouths shut, I've decided to start writing things down. ...But that's another story.

What I really wanted to ask was, what's the best pen for use with a Moleskine?

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ooo just the place

Moleskinerie on Flickr has some interesting topics regading just that topic :D


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Uniball Signo

Actually any pen will do, but for me it's the Uniball Signo Micro. I recently purchased my first Moleskine Pocket squared notebook, and so far the only pen that has touched its precious pages is the Signo. Oh, btw, I write about people in my journal all of the time. But my penmanship is so atrocius nobody will ever be able to decipher it.


hm.... my first thought was

whatever pen you have in hand. ;-)

Personally, I must not be that very picky any more. So long as the pen writes relatively smoothly, leaving a clean line, it works for me. Granted, I suppose I wouldn't mind having a more fancy pen, but oddly enough, my pen that gets the most use is my Palm stylus with a pen in the other end. Why? Because it's always hanging from my hip--most convenient. I have a fake Cross, with a genuine Cross refill in my hip pocket, but I keep forgetting I have it. ;-)

So, I would think that any decent-writing pen would work---but that would be a whole lot less fun! ;-)


Space pen?

I've been toying with the idea of getting a Space Pen, but I don't know if you have to buy the pen refills mail order, or if you can buy them at the local Staples.

Space Pen and Refills

I have seen the Pen and Refills at my local Staples store (they also have refills for other branded pens). I couldn't find them online though, neither Fisher or Space Pen was listed in the Pen Manufacturers drop-down box on the pen refill page [If you want, see http://tinyurl.com/2mtvb3].

- Chris :)

Cheaper Refills

I have often found that it is cheaper to buy pens with those type of refills in than it is to buy Space Pen refills.

Confused? A classic example of this is Rite in the Rain pens. They seem to have the same refills as Fisher Space Pens. You can pick up the Rite in the Rain pens cheaper than the Space Pens refills. It's not very green, but just throw away the Rite in the Rainpen. Once you have removed the refill first obviously!!

Andy Hayes

more refills

If you use a Parker Jotter or another nice pen that takes Parker-style refills, the Office Depot brand "Foray" gel click-pens fit.
10 different colors for about $12 versus about $6 for a two-pack of genuine Parker gel refills.

You could also just use the pens as is, of course.

Parker Gel Refills

The Parker Gel refills do write well though I have to say.

I get my refills on eBay and even in the UK they can be had for sensible prices.

Andy Hayes

If you want to try a fountain pen ...

... get yourself a Pilot Varsity. They're nice.
If you want something refillable, Try the Pilot Petit1 or the Ohto Tasche from JetPens.com. I have them all and really like them. Great pens that won't empty your wallet.
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

refill em

You can refill your varsity pens! so disposable becomes reuseable and even better <3

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Hi there,

I just got myself two Varsity pens. I would be very interested in finding out how to refill them when they run out. Any reference sites you could point me to? Thanks in adavance. :)

ask and thou shalt recieve

How to Refill Varsity Pens

I believe there are other links... This one seemed pretty straight forward but I need to finish one of before I can try it. Let me know if you would like me to post more links :D

my artwork | my blog

Thank you

Awesome, that sounds very doable. I'm all about avoiding contributing to landfill these days so I will definitely try this out. Thanks a lot.

Varsity's in Moleskine

I have been using the varsity pens for a while now and I love them. But I actually don't use them in my moleskine. They bleed too much and the letters always look ragged. Which is really odd and frustrating because I also use sharpies in my moleskine all the time and have been unable to get it to bleed through. I should clarify, the Varsity doesn't bleed through to the next pages, it just bleeds on that page and ends up looking ragged and had to read.


Ok, now the more and more I look at Moleskine hacks, the more and more I wish my Moleskine was here today.

And now I don't have to hold in my nasty thoughts about people. :)


anything you commit to writing could potentially be viewed by the person you are writing about... be warned and be careful. no matter how careful you think you are... or how many precautions you take, be sure that if the person were reading it, everything would be A O K.


my artwork | my blog


True, but they'd have to pry my Moleskine out of my cold, dead fingers before that happens.

And it'll be nice to be able to record my thoughts, too.

EDIT: Oh, and any good Moleskine hacks? Searching Flikr is a pain sometimes...


Google is your friend


Or this link
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

I make it a point ...

... to never write anything in a journal I wouldn't say to a person's face. I may choose NOT to say it, but at least I need to be comfortable saying it to them. Especially about my wife! Haha!

I've used fountain pens

I've used fountain pens (Pelikan and Lamy inks), Foray and G2 Gels, assorted ball points, and even pencils. They all work well!

Or maybe I'm just not that picky!

Archival Ink?

Is archival ink needed? Or will any ink do? What's the difference?

Beats Me!

But I'd point you to the fountain pen network @ www.fountainpennetwork.com.


Grah, not another forum I have to join!

Maybe I'll ask ath the Moleskinerie user group at Flickr...

You probably don't need

You probably don't need archival ink unless you want to save for all of eternity. I don't use archival ink for my Moleskine and I'm okay.

If you like I'll ask the boards for ya and report back!

Any ink will do unless......

Unless you want it kept for eternity. Then you must ask is it waterproof.

Here's a link that answers the archival / waterproof question.


Bottom line for me is what ink I like to write with today - usually a Noodlers variety.


Well, I don't want to keep it for eternity, but I'd like to keep it as long as possible. I think it'd be nice to look back on my old Moleskines when I'm an old man and think '...Who was that girl that I was hung up on again in High school?'

Ink will often fade in the

Ink will often fade in the sun, but that's pretty much the only worry for archival purposes, afaik. (Other than spilling something on non-waterproof ink. :) ) If you don't leave your journal open to the bright morning light for months on end, you should be fine.

Inks do often fade in the sun

Inks do often fade in the sun so if you want something to last for a very long time use pigment based inks or a pencil. They're not hard to find these days now that "archivally stable" everything is de rigueur for scrapbooking and journalling.

So speaks the museum curator who has dealt with any number of faded ink labels but never a faded penciled label.

You're a museum curator?

You're a museum curator? That's awesome!

And don't pencils fade over time? o_O

Not fading, rubbing off

Pencils don't fade so much as the graphite rubs off through manipulation or friction.

So sayeth the historian who deals with old papers all the time. :o)

Higgins and other carbons...

If you want your words to live on after you use a carbon based ink: I like Higgins Eternal (which I found in my ex-partners art box) and Platinum Carbon Black. One Caveat; if you use a fountain pen it will require regular flushs or the carbon will build up in the feed.

Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Ptolemy. :P


No way. I do NOT want people reading this stuff.

It's UBER private. >___>;

Then may I suggest

Invisible ink?

Blue Ghost + Fisher's

There's a UV ink (= invisible in normal light, visible in UV) refill for Fisher Space Pens, and there's an invisible fountain pen ink from Noodler's called Blue Ghost that does the same thing. :D

My only use of encrpytion

For such uber-private material I forget about pen and paper and resort to using one of the readily available encryption programs for my computer. For a long time I used the free (as in no money) version of PGP (Pretty Good Privacy). Now because of licencing issues both commerical and political with PGP I use GPG (GNU Privacy Guard) which handles all but the most exotic encryption schemes in late versions PGP. And those exotic forms are pretty much cracked anyway.

Being paranoid my public/private keys are deemed military strength (i.e. some size over 512 bits long) and with a novel-length pass phrase. Okay so the NSA could probably break it but why they'd be interested in my laundry lists? ;-)

If I write something on paper then it matters very little who reads it but if I encrpyt it then well it's "for my eyes only". :-|

Ok, maybe it's not UBER

Ok, maybe it's not UBER private, but it's not something I want other people to see.

And I'd rather do it in my Moleskine than on the computer.

for UBER private stuff

The best thing you can do on paper is probably to write in a different alphabet. There is Tengwar (a phonetic script from JRR Tolkien's Lord of the Rings series); or Cyrillic (Russian) transliterated into English (that is, map the English alphabet into the Cyrillic one). That will stop most people right there. Tengwar link: http://www.omniglot.com/writing/tengwar_eng.htm

Ah, geek memories


I used to use Tengwar and Dwarvish to write notes in middle and high school. I got good enough I didn't need to look at the table to translate back and forth after a while.

How sad. I've been a geek all my life.


....me too.

....me too.

Ash nazg durbatuluk...

That's what got me started in calligraphy. I wanted to write tengwar. My "artist signature" is my nickname, Igor, in tengwar.
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

I have used the Greek

I have used the Greek alphabet to write English and French and now I have memorized the parts I did not learn when I took math and/or science. Some letters such as alpha and beta are pretty easy to figure out but other such as gamma, sigma, theta, phi, and psi would take some knowledge of the Greek alphabet.

That reminds me...

of the ancient alphabet I found out about in high school and adopted (with a couple friends) as our note-writing alphabet! I still have a handful of those notes somewhere...

But the best was when we got caught passing a note in history class- with the teacher who would "read" your note out loud, amking up embarassing junk you didn't really write. He took it, and cleared his throat, and prepared to humiliate us...then looked at us...flipped the note upside down...looked at it from the backside...flipped it around again...looked at us again...folded it up, handed it back, and went back to lecture!

I hadn't even thought about using THAT for encrypting passwords and such! It would be perfect!

Are you referring to...

Courthand ?
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

yup, pencil will rub off

Yup, pencil will rub off. Something to take into consideration when deciding what kind of writing instrument to use. Here at work we use pencil for all cataloging or when doing any note taking in the same room with objects/specimens unless we're actually permanently labeling an object by writing the number on it. We use pigment-based pens for actually labeling an object and then there are no other objects within arms reach except those being labeled. All other writing work done in the room is with pencil, just like when you visit an archive. It is too easy to be writing along with your handy-dandy favorite pen and accidentally brush up against an object leaving a pen mark behind. Been there, done that.

Yup, it's not like

Yup, it's not like Indiana Jones or anything but I am an archaeology curator. I get to obsess about organizing lots of objects, lots of notes, the best way to catalog and store things and data... the perfect job for someone who equally obsessively searches for the perfect planner/organizer system. :-)

Moleskine lifespan

How long do Moleskines last, anyways? Not paper use wise, but just being around wise...

...If that makes any sense.

Tee Too much of everything

Too much of everything [I love] is just enough.
~Calvin & Hobbes
They are not leather, the binding and stitching on several of mine (reporter style),deteriorated after using for two months. Two were replaced by the company, after I scanned to show the damage. Love the paper, I plan to try to hack to use in Circas!

You Need Protection

I use a ziploc bag to protect mine. It sounds a bit of an overkill but I carry them everywhere in all weathers. I use a fountain pen and the ink is not always waterproof.

Noodlers black is waterproof and whilst I appreciate it for that quality I would rather it was not so matte. Although I have come to loathe blotchy Pilot G2s, I like the colour of the ink. It is similar to Mont Blanc black.

Andy Hayes

The new moleskine?

Has anybody seen or bought the newer moleskines made in China? How does the quality compare to the Italian? I have several Italian ones that were given as gifts, and wondering if I should cherish them all the more. It breaks my heart if is true that they have stopped making them to cut costs... is there anything else to compare?

The new ones I've purchased...

... haven't been the best quality. I bought some of the five-tab info books for making into planners (one tab per month) and the binding is already coming apart, after only two weeks of use. I really didn't want to send it back for a refund after having customized it into a planner, so I just fixed the binding as best I could. But, I'm going to start looking for an alternative notebook. I have my eye on that Japanese traveler's notebook that's just gorgeous but hard to get one's hands on.

the right pen

. . .depends on what you want to write. I use a micron (a fiber tip for artists) to write so I can read it, but i also love pencils with very soft lead. I read somewhere that pencil outlasts pen because pencils are archival and carbon (not too many made that way anymore) lasts forever.
I also like gel pens, but my own Moleskine doesn't take fountain pen ink very well. I do get bleed through.


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