Employee Picks


Let’s start with the dog. I have had a shepherd or shepherd mix for the past 49 years. The latest is a seven year-old (we think), as we chose a rescue and not a rambunctious puppy this time.  Then there is the Pilot Custom 823 Amber, my current go-to pen. The fine nib suits my everyday writing style because it is so easy to use on a range of papers — on the Clarefontaine notebook 6” x 8 1/4” lined notebook — it is dream smooth, and on cheaper paper it does not bleed very much. Balance is great - it is a long pen which works well with the cap posted on the barrel or not. Then there is the 1.3 ml ink capacity, enough for me to write several days without a refill.  

The Pilot Iroshizuku Ina-ho, or rice ear, is a warm brown which looks great coming out of the Custom 823. The lighter hue Sailor 1911 Full-Size Anchor Grey, in contrast, shifts in tone depending on the light. And Sailor makes fantastic nibs. I threw in a piece of the Micromesh polishing cloth I use to lightly finish custom grinds (as well as some stock tips) for final smoothness. Micromesh is a great product, you must use it cautiously - even slight overuse can severely damage a nib. 



Fountain Pen: A great pen for long winter nights, the Long Cigar Moon showcases Nakaya’s ability to use traditional Maki-e techniques in a very non-traditional way - in this case, multiple layers of silver powder over black urushi to create an evocative rendering of the lunar surface.

Ink: Sailor Kiwa-Guro remains my usual everyday ink, but Pilot Iroshizuku Tsuki-yo “Moonlight” ink is also a longtime favorite, with its blue-black hues and light turquoise shading.

Accessory: The Field Notes Three Missions limited edition set pays homage to the space program with beautiful full color covers - a perfect notepad to jot down your thoughts after seeing “First Man” this fall!


Sailor's 1911 Midsize Fresca Blue is such a beautiful color and as I work in the Service department I rarely see Sailors come back for repair! These Field Notes Coastal are the perfect travel size and I’m a beach bum at heart so the images really speak to me. The Platinum Forest Black ink reminds me of the years I spent living in the Pacific Northwest.


Sailor Pro Gear Imperial Black: This pen is a perfect marriage of modern design and functionality. The sleek, smooth and monochromatic aesthetic is ideal for the minimal side of my personality.

Pilot Iroshizuku Fuyu-syogun: Monochromatic gray-scale ink that is classic and qualitative.

Field Notes End Papers: The Field Notes End Papers Limited Edition comes in a sultry Timber Green and Nightshift blue, perfect for keeping notes on your favorite 80’s goth bands.