Yesterday, I reviewed the dip pens currently available through Victorian Trading Company, the company where I work. Today, I’ll review the ballpoint pens currently offered.
Both are slim gold tone twist ballpoint pens with a 28″ gold tone chain. The Floral Pearl Seed Pen features a decorative cloisonne rose with pearl flowers on the clip. The Cameo features –well, a cameo design on the clip. These decorative elements make up the clip but since this is a necklace pen, the clip is more for decoration than functionality. I would be worried I’d bend the decorative elements or break them if I tried to use it as a functional clip.
The pen tip retracts with a twist mechanism that is smooth and snug. The likelihood of the pen coming untwisted unknowingly is pretty slim. The overall pen shape is slender like the classic Cross Century. Honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if the pen was entirely designed on the Cross Century chassis.
Both pens rely on the classic Cross style twist ballpoint refill. I scavenged through my refill stash to see if there were any comparable refills that could be hacked to fit into the pen but didn’t find any other solutions. Monteverde sells compatible refills in Medium and Broad in a wide variety of colors. There are other options for the Cross refill but I am confident to recommend Monteverde and Cross.
The pens have a lovely engraved pattern in the body that gives them a retro vibe.
While no one (myself included) really wants a pandemic era torso photo, I needed a model to show the length of the chain. So… no comments about the crappy, unflattering photo, ok?
I am quite short and short torso-ed and the pen chain and pen hit at my natural waist. The pen clips on with a lobster claw for easy-on and -off and there’s another closure at the back of the neck to make putting the chain on easier though I was able to just put it on over my head. I am sure it would be easy to add length to the chain or just swap out for a longer chain so long as your could add a lobster claw for attaching the pen.
In writing tests, the pens write like a standard ballpoint pen. Ballpoint pens are not my favorite writing tool as they always feel a little “skippy” to me. But I love the idea of having a pen on a chain so I might continue to research hack options so I can replace the refill with a gel pen.
Victorian Trading Company also carries the Anna Griffen Rose Garden Gift Pen ($24.95)
This pen is a capped pen with gold hardware and a floral motif printed on the barrel.
The cap snaps tightly to post on the end which is a nice design feature. It is also a snap cap so it makes it a quick on-and-off.
The pen takes a standard Parker-style refill which means, although it ships with a bog-standard medium ballpoint refill, there are a lot more options for upgrading this pen.
Since we all need at least one ballpoint pen in our collection, these pens are definitely an option. If you like roses and gold hardware, it’s definitely fun and eye-catching. Or if you have a friend or family member who has always wanted a “nice pen” but isn’t quite ready to dive into the world of fountain pens, any of these might be good options. I would definitely include a few extra refills though.