Another ink from the Birmingham pen company. I wasn’t planning on reviewing another of their inks just yet but I received this as a freebie when I had a dud pen replaced. I had bought a couple of fountain pens from Birmingham pens and one would not write, I tried everything I could think of to no avail. Nick at Birmingham pens very kindly replaced the pen for me and sent me a bottle of this ink. It is not an ink I would have bought seeing it on the web site however the writing experience is quite different, I have filled my pen a number of times as I am using it a lot..
As mentioned in a previous post the Birmingham Pen Co is based in Pittsburgh. I also posted prices for the inks in the same post so will not repeat it here as there has been no change. All the inks have a name with a link to Pittsburgh, each comes with a brief history of the name but I always want to know a little more
Mary Elfrieda Scruggs (1910-1981) was born in Atlanta Georgia but brought up in Pittsburgh. She is better known by her professional name (and that of the ink) Mary Lou Williams (MLW). Williams because it was the name of her first husband whom she married at 16 in 1926, Mary Lou and not Mary at the recommendation of a record executive.
I really enjoyed reading about MLW as I knew nothing before and discovered she played with some of the greats such as Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie, Benny Goodman and Tommy Dorsey. She was the first women to become successful in jazz and was playing professionally right up to her death at 71 from bladder cancer.
A small taste of her talent https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-3-B9vSFSb4
The packaging for the ink is simple, I have described it previously but only showed a picture of a 5ml sample bottle. Here the 30ml bottle of this ink.
A drop on absorbent paper is more telling. There is depth at the centre but towards the edges it spreads to reveal red and what I would call a peachy pink.
I found both these swatches a surprise because the ink is completely different when you write.
I love Diamine oxblood and use it quite frequently. Despite this ink being called pink as I used all I could think of was oxblood. The swatches though are very different.
They look like completely different inks though of the same shading. However, the writing comparison and you could think it was the same ink being used.
MLW at the top, Diamine oxblood, ancient copper and red dragon and there really isn't much to choose between the four of them. If anyone thinks its because of the lighting used I can assure its not. This may be called a pink ink but when writing it is almost indistinguishable from oxblood.
Last but not least the water testing. I have taken to running my test under a tap to really get an idea of how good the inks are - I know one wouldn't normally do this with an ink but I like to really put them to the test and this did not disappoint.
Very impressive water resistance.
Overall another great ink. It is a well saturated ink but with minimal shading, similar to Diamine oxblood so I really like it. Other positives - price, service basically everything I said in my previous Birmingham pen review.