Monday, October 18, 2010

Private Reserve Ebony Purple Fountain Pen Ink

I like purple. It has a lot of different shades, and can evoke many different emotions. I definitely wanted a purple ink for this time of year. Everyone knows: jewel tones are always "in" in fall. After some personal medical and educational drama, I decided to finally treat myself to some real inks, and a converter for my Lamy Safari, that way I could use them. The first two inks I received from JetPens were J. Herbin Bleu Myosotis (a kind of denim color) and Private Reserve Black Cherry. I was underwhelmed by both of them, and I only ordered them because they didn't have one single interesting purple in stock. In a desperate search to quench my purple needs, I ordered two more inks from The Goulet Pen Company. From those fine folks, I received Private Reserve Ebony Purple and J. Herbin Bleu Pervenche. I'll have more on the other three inks later; for now it's all about the Ebony Purple.
Some ink names can be misleading, others can be downright out of left field. Such is not the case with Ebony Purple. It is exactly what it claims to be: purple so dark, it's almost black. It could easily be mistaken for black if viewed in certain conditions. I kind of like that about it. You could probably get away with using this in a professional or academic setting where blue or black ink is all that is really accepted. The darkness is greatly dependent on how saturated the line you are putting down is. The swab from a q-tip doesn't look black at all. It's kind of deep lavender, I'm guessing it looks quite similar to Caran d'Ache Storm or J. Herbin Poussiere de Lune. Here is my swab swatch:

Coming out of a pen nib, it is a different story. It is much darker under artificial light than in natural. It pretty much looks black this time of night while illuminated only by my desk lamp. Natural light brings out the purple much more, but it is still pretty dark. I think the scans are relatively accurate though the shading is much more pronounced in the scan. It's a nice writer, neither too wet nor too dry. Flow is nice. My 50ml bottle was $8.25 (before shipping) from The Goulet Pen Company. I definitely like this ink a lot and I will reorder more when I run out. Here is my written review:

On a side note: I am not affiliated with nor compensated by JetPens or The Goulet Pen Company. I found both of them to be very nice to buy from, and shipping was very fast from both (JetPens came form CA, Goulet order came from VA, and both arrived 3 business days after placing my order). The Goulet Pen Company added a handwritten note to me on my invoice and included some swatches of other inks, for my own future reference. I found Brian Goulet's personal touches quite endearing. I will be ordering from both companies in the future!


  1. Great review, and thanks for the kind words! We appreciate you including us in your review.

    I really like the Ebony Purple as well - it's work-appropriate "with a twist".

  2. Thanks! I haven't tried the Ebony Purple yet, but now I want to.

    I order all my goodies from Goulet Pens. The Goulets are way fun to talk to if you ever need to call them with questions.

  3. Have you tried Private Reserve Tanzanite? I think that's a great purple.

  4. If I could only have one ink this would be it...

    Well, maybe carbon black would be the "one ink" but that's not really ink for fountain pens.

    Anyway, this is my favorite.