Lamy released a collection of new inks they are calling Crystal inks. They are calling this their premium line of inks and charging accordingly, at least in the US where a 30 ml bottle is costing upwards of $18. Compared to Lamy’s standard ink line which features 50ml bottles for $12. This sort of price-to-volume increase seems to be following the same trends that Sailor and other major brands are employing. While I appreciate more ink colors becoming available more regularly through wider distribution channels, the continual price increases can e a little frustrating.
Also, the naming convention being employed for this line of inks from Lamy is also treading on some familiar territory. Pelikan Edelstein utilizes the gemstone naming convention for its annual ink releases and Monteverde also has a line of Gemstone inks. So, Lamy is complicating the already saturated (if you’ll pardon the pun) market of gemstone-related inks.
All of that said, the new Rhodonite pink ink will satisfy the craving of many people who may be hoping that Lamy is keeping Vibrant Pink in its regular line-up. It is. It’s called Rhodonite. The first tip-off was when I removed the bottle from the box (yes, the new Crystal inks come in cushioned boxes) and discovered the telltale gold metallic flakes in the bottom just like Vibrant Pink.
Once I swatched up the ink, I was fairly certain it was an exact match to Vibrant Pink.
I even consulted my in-house color expert (my husband Bob) to come take a look to see if he could spot any differences in the colors. I swatched both of these on the same day so there would be no difference in the colors due to aging, sun exposure, etc. We couldn’t spot any color shifts.
In writing tests, Rhodonite performs as I would expect a Lamy ink to perform. The color shades beautifully, with a hint of the sheen from the gold and the vividness of the magenta pink. This is definitely an ink that benefits from a wider nib. While Rhodonite is more expensive than the original Vibrant Pink, Vibrant Pink was a limited edition color and often times those inks end up only being available on eBay at extortionate rates if you missed the chance to buy it the first time around. So, Rhodonite, is a good alternative.
I am definitely interested to see what some of the other colors in the series are going to be like. It was a fluke that the one I chose was a dead match for Vibrant Pink since I chose a color simply out of a list. So, now you know. If you already own Vibrant Pink and want to try some of the Crystal Inks from Lamy, pick a different color!
- Paper: Rhodia Ice No. 18 Lined
- Pens: Dip nib holder with Zebra G titanium nib ($33.50 per 10-pack), Acrylic dip nib pen (Approx. $15), Woodshed Pens custom fountain pen (NA) with Peyton Street Pens JOWO compatible fine cursive italic nib ($45)
- Swatches: Col-o-Ring Ink Testing Book ($10) & Col-o-dex Rotary Cards ($15)
- Brush: Princeton Neptune #4 Round ($7.16)
- Ink: Lamy Crystal Rhodonite (€9.50 for 30ml bottle)
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