Monday, November 2, 2020

Fountain Pen Ink Review: Scribe x Troublemaker Inks Butanding

When I joined Fountain Pen Network Philippines in 2008, it was a challenging time for fountain pen enthusiasts. Quink black or blue-black was the only fountain pen ink available, there were no local paper brands that could handle fountain pen inks, and most of us had to buy our ink and paper supplies abroad. Luckily for us, a specialty store in Eastwood City, Scribe Writing Essentials sold their own notebook brand that was fountain pen friendly. Shortly after their introduction to the group, they stocked their shelves with J. Herbin inks. Then they brought in Pelikan, Platinum, Sailor, Noodlers, and Private Reserve. Nowadays, Scribe carries around 35 brands and more than 100 fountain pen inks in a wide array of colors.

In 2019, renamed introduced us to their very first collaboration with Cebu-based Troublemaker Inks. The project brought us Salomé, a sheening green-blue fountain pen ink, done for Scribe's 10th anniversary. This year, Scribe collaborated with Troublemaker Inks once again and brought JIM Weaver into the project to produce a limited edition set of matching fountain pen ink and reusable/reversible face mask. The JIM Weaver x Scribe x Troublemaker project is inspired by Scribe's 'support local businesses initiative and the set is proudly made in the Philippines.

JIM Weaver is a business in the Philippines led by four women who share the same passion to make art wearable through fashion. Their products range from silk scarves to reusable/reversible masks. The reusable mask in this limited edition set is very timely as wearing face masks in public is now a mandatory practice in most areas in the Philippines. Called "Whale of A Time," the mask is an original JIM Weaver design by Isabelle Ocier in an exclusive colorway that matches the bluish-gray Butanding ink.

Scribe x Troublemaker Butanding fountain pen ink.
"A Whale of A Time," the mask is an original JIM Weaver design in an exclusive colorway that matches Butanding ink.

Butanding is my first Troublemaker ink, so this review is another first for Rants of The Archer. Butanding, inspired by the whale shark, is a charming shading ink with a bluish/greenish-gray color with pink to purple shading. This ink's shading property is best seen in wide and wet nibs. It starts as a dark gray when wet, but dries a beautiful combination of blue, green, gray, and purple. It's a wet ink with excellent flow and consistency.

Butanding is a beautiful combination of blue, green, gray, and purple. 
I do not have any similar ink colors, but Butanding's gray is close to J. Herbin Gris Nuage. 
Butanding writing sample from a TWSBI ECO with a 1.1 nib. It took around 18 seconds to dry, but ink drying times vary depending on nib wetness, paper quality, and hand stroke. Butanding could have dried faster if it was written using a fine or medium nib.
In my writing tests, Butanding's beautiful shading is best seen in Canson 90gsm sketchbook paper. I tried Tomoe River Paper, Traveler's Notebook, and 160gsm paper, but it was Canson that showed the beautiful shading.
This ink's shading is also best seen written using wider and wet nibs. This was written using a TWSBI ECO 1.1.
Project Butanding is an excellent example of brands working together to produce something beautiful and meaningful.

Butanding is a beautiful fountain pen ink and an excellent product from a collaboration of local brands. It's a lovely shading ink and a unique color to add to one's collection. Get one for your pens now!

It's November — my birth month! During this special month of the year, you will see exciting features in Rants of The Archer! Several Filipino products will be featured, beginning with this week's fountain pen ink, Butanding. I will also feature my old favorites and some new brands. Stay tuned and enjoy our weekly features!

Rants of The Archer thanks Scribe for providing the fountain pen ink in this review. Visit the website to learn more about their products, promos, and new brand offerings. now offers worldwide shipping. Follow them on social media:

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