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Jane Austen Fountain Pen Review http://media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/c4/c0/74/c4c07467d2b6153a83990aec23b3a3fe.jpg I purchased this pen from Victorian Trading Company for $20 Packaging and Presentation: 10/10 I really like the black box this pen came in. It features Jane’s signature on the top and Victorian Trading Co’s logo inside. The pen came nestled inside the white silky lining with a ribbon holder and two elastic holders as well. The box was packed safely in bubble wrap and had no damage when it arrived. The packing slip even had instructions on how to insert the ink cartridge. http://media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/b0/87/8d/b0878ddf02530c3f6cd01fbe1113a96a.jpg Pen Appearance: 8.5/10 This pen is pretty! Seriously it is lovely! I love the shiny pearly white finish. And the alabaster white part (in the middle when pen is capped) is so gorgeous! Jane’s signature is also on the pen and seems to be very nice; no fading or flaking off. The finish is smooth and pleasant to the touch. There are two things I am not incredibly fond of: 1) The cap has a strange shape at the end; I think this is to stop the pen from rolling around since there is no clip on the cap. There is nothing wrong with this; it just seems a little strange at first. I have gotten used to it, and while I still don’t particularly fancy the strange shape of the cap’s hat, I do appreciate that it helps stop the pen from rolling around so I am willing to compromise. – 1/2 a point 2) The grip section is very skinny and the white metal part is not shiny like the rest of the pen. I think it makes the pen look cheap and it takes away from the appeal of the pen slightly. -1 point Function: 10/10 This pen came with one black standard int’l ink cartridge. I did purchase the Monteverde Mini Converter from Goulet and it fits perfectly. The cap snaps on and off and posts. The pen has a little weight but is not too heavy for me (I don’t like real heavy pens.) The pen has not dried out, nor has ink evaporated or any other problems when left sitting for a few days. Writing Experience: 8/10 This pen wrote surprisingly well and far exceeded my expectations the first time I wrote with it. After writing with it for a couple weeks I have noticed a couple negatives. 1) The small metal section is super skinny and uncomfortable even for me to hold – and I typically like smaller pens. But I found a solution to this problem. Keep reading. 2) The second problem is that as the converter was running low on ink, ink would creep from the section and the silver finish above the nib resulting in very inky fingers. This doesn’t seem to be a problem when the converter is full, only when the ink level is very low. I also found a solution to this. My solution to both aforementioned problems was simply to hold the pen on the alabaster section of the pen. It is a little strange for me at first since I am familiar with holding pens closer to the paper, but this has solved both issues for me and is a compromise I am willing to make. It hasn’t really changed the way the pen writes, I just have to adjust when I first hold the pen and then as I write it becomes more comfortable and I forget that I made an adjustment in the beginning. So my experience is now very pleasant. Ink Flow: 10/10 The pen’s ink flow is in the middle, I think. It is not dry (I hate dry pens) but definitely doesn’t gush (nothing like the Ahab). I feel like the wetness level is exactly perfect. If I had to compare, I would say it is similar to the Metropolitan and Artista Crystal in flow. Nib: 9/10 This nib is smooth! Not buttery smooth, like the Goulet nibs, but still very smooth – so smooth that I do not even need to use Mylar paper with it. It is truly great! The one problem is that it skips sometimes. I haven’t figured out a pattern, but it seems worse when I write too fast and on very slick paper like Clairefontaine or Rhodia. It hasn’t been too big of a deal for me, but it has annoyed me a couple times. I need to try more inks in the pen to see if different inks will affect this skipping issue. Durability: 10/10 The pen is very durable when carrying around in my purse (three different times: inside the box, in a zipper pocket and in a pen case roll); there was no leaking or any other issues. A few ink spots on the nib were minor. I have not noticed any scratches or any other defects in the pen. Everything seems to be working perfectly! Cost: 10/10 This pen cost me $20 with a coupon for $2 shipping. An awesome deal! http://media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/28/de/ba/28deba65abd0f937a7d92f60237fea00.jpg Overall Value: 75.5/80 I personally feel this pen is worth the cost. I enjoy the pen for the novelty, the loveliness and it is fun as well as practical. I do recommend this pen for any Jane Austen fan. Just be sure to get a mini converter so you can use bottled ink (or a syringe to refill the short cartridges). To see more photos please visit my gallery on my website: http://tessymoon.wix.com/tessymoon#!fountain-pen-love/cp8t