Back when I first started to get into fountain pens, I recall thinking that the Iroshizuku line of inks were so expensive and luxurious. It was this ink that made me take the plunge – there was something about this subtle, soft purple leaning gray ink that really appealed to me.
For a long time Iroshizuku was my favourite brand of inks due to the reliability of the inks and how easy they were to clean. I don’t have any delicate or vintage pens in my collection, but I love how easy this line of ink is to clean out of painful pens, like piston fillers that can’t be disassembled – and you all know how much I hate to clean pens. They’re also easy to find (to purchase) and the bottle is a work of art in itself. I love the minimalist look.
This ink was one of the first three Iroshizuku inks I purchased (the other two being Kon Peki and Tsuki yo). Although it remains one of my favourites, I now lean towards brighter inks and so this one doesn’t get used quite as often as it used to.
For me this is the perfect grey ink – its mid toned and slightly purple leaning. Too often grey inks are too dark (looking more like a light black/graphite colour) and aren’t as apparent as grey inks or too brown/green leaning. Although its lighter than some other greys out there, its not so light that its difficult to see and remains very usable in all situations.
Fuyu Syogun shows good shading in wider nibs, but I couldn’t see any sheen in this ink on any of the papers used. Its also smooth flowing and great for slightly drier nibs and behaves well on most papers, even cheaper photocopy paper in most offices.
I wish Iroshizuku would release a bigger range of colours in their line. I know they released their 100th anniversary range of inks last year, with 7 new colours, but in all, the line has only 31 colours. The formula remains my favourite, but Sailor may have nudged further up on my ranking due to their extensive colour range and the complexity in some of their inks.
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