12 Days of Inkmas: Day 6 Pen BBS 398 Morning Ink

I am not sure what the general consensus is in the pen community about Pen BBS ink but it is in my TOP FIVE brands. I freaking LOVE Pen BBS ink. Their colors are wonderful, I’ve had no issues with staining or clogging, they make far and away THE BEST shimmer inks and their ink prices are the best. Pen BBS large hexagonal 60ml bottles with the embossed caps are really unique. If you haven’t added any Pen BBS inks to your collection yet, what are you waiting for?

All that to say, if you’ve been reading this blog for any time you’ll know that green is my favorite color (see the header above) so I’m always looking for the perfect green ink. Not too light, not too bright, not too dark. Finding the perfect green has been the most challenging ink to find.

Pen BBS does make one of my favorite greens thus far, No. 224 Tolstoy. It matches my Ranga Bamboo pen perfectly and the two have become an inseparably pair. For everyday use, Tolstoy is a little darker than my dream green so my hunt has continued. Pen BBS No. 398 Morning Ink (15ml bottle for $8) was my next foray into citrus greens. It’s a much brighter green. Why it’s “Morning Ink” I can’t fathom. No. 398 is a brighter, lighter citrus-y green with lots of shading though.

In writing, there are points where the shading is a little too light for my liking however. If I were to use a more cream or ivory colored paper stock, I think I’d lose the writing altogether.

On Tomoe River 68gsm, Morning Ink looks a tiny bit lighter than on our standard Rhodia testing paper.

When compared to some of the myriad of other citrus green inks in my stash (a term stolen from my knitting posse), you’ll see I have several that are quite similar.

When spread out, it’s a little easier to see the subtle differences in the inks. Pen BBS No. 159 Bitter Herb is another citrus green ink that I really like from Pen BBS. It’s a bit darker than No. 398 Morning Ink which is a little more festive. Pen BBS No. 398 is probably closest in color to Diamine Light Green. Robert Oster Australis Tea is a little muddier version of a very similar color.

I think Pen BBS No. 398 is a fun, citrus green but not my “grail green”.

Do you have a color that you are always on the hunt for the perfect ink to match? The color of your childhood roller skates? The color of your grandmother’s wallpaper? The color of the flowers in your wedding bouquet?  Have you found it yet?


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