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Papier Plume - Mardi Gras Indians Purple (New Orleans Collection)

papier plume new orleans collection mardi gras indians purple purple

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#1 namrehsnoom



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Posted 08 March 2019 - 20:26

Papier Plume - Mardi Gras Indians Purple (New Orleans Collection)
Papier Plume is a stationary shop in New Orleans, that's been getting some attention lately on this forum with their "New Orleans Inks", that celebrate the rich colours and history of the city. One of their inks in this series is Mardi Gras Indians Purple,  a very nice grey-puple ink that I immediately took a liking to.
Mardi Gras Indians Purple is a dark purple ink that looks surprisingly good on paper. Sometimes an ink instinctively appeals to you on first use ... that's what happened to me with this Papier Plume colour. I really like it. It's a purple ink, but not of the vibrant kind. Its greyish tones make for a more subdued look, that will work quite well when used as an office ink. Shading is definitely there, but without too much contrast between the light and darker parts, just as I like it. A very classy ink !
And what a cool name! This ink is modelled after the purplish colours that are often present in the elaborate costumes of Mardi Gras Indians in New Orleans. As such, the ink has links to the colourful history of the city. Be sure to read Jackokun’s excellent review that has tons of historical background - highly recommended !
The ink differs from other Papier Plume inks in this series: this one is much wetter and quite well lubricated. It's by no means a wet ink, but it still pleasantly surprised me since it is definitely the wettest ink from Papier Plume that I have used so far. Another good point in its favour!
The ink has a medium dynamic colour span. To illustrate this, I did a swab where I really saturated portions of the paper with ink, pooling it on. This illustrates the dynamics of Mardi Gras Indians Purple, with moves from a light violet to a dark grey-purple colour.  
On the smudge test - rubbing text with a moist Q-tip cotton swab - the ink behaved very well . There is very little smearing, and the text remains perfectly readable. Water resistance is remarkably good - both with a 15 minute soak test with still water, and when running tap water over the writing. The ink smudges, but the text itself remains clearly readable - even after 30 seconds under running tap water. A welcome plus if you'll be using this as an office ink. This is also apparent from the lower part of the chromatography, which shows that that greyish components of the ink remain firmly attached to the paper.
I've tested the ink on a wide variety of paper - from crappy Moleskine to high-end Tomoe River. On each scrap of paper I show you:
  • An ink swab, made with a cotton Q-tip
  • 1-2-3 pass swab, to show increasing saturation
  • An ink scribble made with a Lamy Safari M-nib fountain pen
  • The name of the paper used, written with a Lamy Safari B-nib
  • A small text sample, written with an M-nib
  • Drying times of the ink on the paper (with the M-nib)
Mardi Gras Indians Purple behaved perfectly with most papers in my test set. Drying times are very acceptable in the 10-15 second range with the M-nib. With the low-quality papers I noticed a tiny amount of feathering, especially with the broad nib. You also get a bit of bleed-through with these papers. With better quality paper, the ink works flawlessly. The ink has a very consistent appearance across paper types, and looks good on both the white and off-white paper. My personal opinion: a sophisticated and good-looking ink.
Writing with different nib sizes
The picture below shows the effect of nib sizes on the writing. All samples were written with a Lamy Safari, which is typically a dry pen. I also added a visiting pen - my wet Pelikan M400 White Tortoise with an M-nib. With all these combinations, the ink writes very pleasantly and leaves a nicely saturated line. 
Related inks
To show off related inks, I recently switched to a nine-grid format, with the currently reviewed ink at the center. The new format shows the name of related inks, a saturation sample, a 1-2-3 swab and a water resistance test - all in a very compact format. This format makes it easy to compare the ink with its eight direct neighbours, which I hope will be useful to you.
Inkxperiment – Lighthouse
For some time now I've been experimenting with ink drawings, keeping things simple and more-or-less abstract. I find this to be a fun extension of the hobby, and these single-ink drawings often present quite a nice challenge. It also gives you an idea of what the ink is capable of in a more artistic setting.  Recently I've been using HP photo paper as a drawing medium. I'm quite fascinated by the vibrancy that inks achieve on this type of paper. For this drawing, I started by submerging the paper in water to which I added a few drops of ink. This gives a light-purple background that forms the starting point for this little 10 by 15 cm drawing. Next I painted in the horizon lines and the lighthouse, using different mixes of ink & water. I then painted in the sky and the water. Finally I added the trees, and darkened up the horizon line and lighthouse with pure Mardi Gras Indians Purple. The end result gives you a good idea of the way the ink expresses itself when used for drawing. 
Mardi Gras Indians Purple from Papier Plume is a gem of an ink: a classy dark-purple colour, that leaves a saturated nicely-shaded line, and that is quite water-resistant. As such, it's an excellent ink for use at the office. This ink immediately appealed to me with its subdued grey-purple tones - it went straight to my top three for 2019 (but the year still has nine months to go, so this may change... we’ll see). I you like your purples, this is an ink that you will almost certainly appreciate. I recommend giving it a try!
Technical test results on Rhodia N° 16 notepad paper, written with Lamy Safari, M-nib
Backside of writing samples on different paper types

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#2 Lgsoltek


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Posted 08 March 2019 - 20:33

I know you and I often have opposite tastes in colours, but I find this one really lovely! Thank you for another detailed and expressive review! 

#3 cello



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Posted 08 March 2019 - 20:36

Great review!  I have a bottle of this, but have not used it much yet (I am enjoying Streetcar Green currently though).  The note about this one being slightly wetter is helpful.  Thanks for taking the time to do this (and all of your) review/s.  I love the drawings too!

Edited by cello, 08 March 2019 - 20:36.

#4 lapis


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Posted 08 March 2019 - 20:58

Excellent review, especially your "Related inks" -- what a lovely wording here --  also one of my favourite NOLA inks.... wait!.... Sazerac and Streetcar also belong to my faves....



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#5 inkstainedruth


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Posted 08 March 2019 - 23:58

That's a pretty color.  But I would have expected something more vibrant to named after Mardi Gras.  It appears to be just a titch redder than Diamine Damson, but still very close (as in, do I need another purple ink that similar to Damson...?).  This one goes on the "maybe" list.

Thanks for the review.  And, well, possibly not.... :rolleyes: 

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#6 Jan2016


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Posted 09 March 2019 - 01:06

Thank you for your review. The comparison with the other inks is very useful!

Favorite 3 of 2019, what are the other 2?

#7 ENewton



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Posted 09 March 2019 - 03:44

Thank you for this comprehensive review of what looks like a very attractive ink.


I love the gray purples.

#8 namrehsnoom



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Posted 09 March 2019 - 17:23

Thank you for your review. The comparison with the other inks is very useful!
Favorite 3 of 2019, what are the other 2?

MB Velvet Red is currently number one. Next is this one, and 3rd place goes to Éclat de Saphir. But lots of other inks to explore this year, so the top 3 is sure to change :-). My guess is that Velvet Red will be a keeper, and that this PP ink also has a fair chance of surviving :-)

#9 Jan2016


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Posted 10 March 2019 - 02:11

Nice! Thanks for the update.

So many nice inks, so little time....

#10 amberleadavis


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Posted 13 March 2019 - 18:36

Wonderful review and comparisons. Thank you so much!

Fountain pens are my preferred COLOR DELIVERY SYSTEM (in part because crayons melt in Las Vegas).


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