Six Month Review, Part III: Favorite Pen Accessories

As the current analog resurgence continues, and more people become interested in fountain pens, pencils, good paper, and the stationery category in general, new lines of accessories are popping up to serve this market segment. Which means, for us pen obsessives, that there are new categories of things to buy that aren’t more pens, inks, or bound journals that we can’t possibly use in one lifetime. Over the past year or so I’ve had the opportunity to test out more than a dozen of these different products. Here I discuss five of my favorites. 

Disclaimer: The following contains links to sponsors and affiliates. It’s how I support the blog and keep the lights on around here. That said, whether or not I chose to include a specific item on this list in the first place is a choice separate and apart from which retailer I choose to link to. No sponsor or affiliate had any input into the inks included on this list, which reflects my own personal opinion.  


Penwell Pen Holder. The “desk pen” as a stand-alone tool has more or less died out (with some limited exceptions). In 2017, Good Made Better released the Penwell, a pen holder that converts any pen into a desk pen, and allows for quick removal if you want to take your currently inked fountain pen on the go. The Penwell is easily my favorite pen accessory that I’ve reviewed since I’ve been writing this blog, and I look forward to seeing what else GMB has in store for the future. My review of the Penwell here.

One Star Leather Notebook Covers. I’ve settled on the Baron Fig Confidant as my favorite hardbound notebook, and whichever one I’m currently working through is always protected in my One Star Leather cover. Keegan does excellent leather work, and he makes a wide variety of accessories for sale, including custom leather covers designed to fit pretty much any brand of notebook from Moleskine to Leuchtturm to Baron Fig. My review here.


Roterfaden Taschenbegleiter. The Taschenbegleiter isn’t new to the market, but after sitting on the fence for a couple of years, I purchased one from Los Angeles-based retailer Baum-Kuchen and have been using it regularly to manage multiple “mini-projects” I’ve been working on, each of which is contained in an A5-ish softcover notebook clipped into the Roterfaden. I’m still working on my full review, but I plan to have a fairly in-depth piece ready to go sometime this summer.


Baron Fig Mastermind Desk Pad. Few products have received more daily use at my desk than the Mastermind. While I do wish Baron Fig made a slightly larger size, the Mastermind has become my “catch-all” scratch pad, whether for household budgeting, outlining reviews and content for the site, or sketching out the initial drafts of legal briefs. Though it doesn’t see quite as much use - I manage my calendar electronically - the Mastermind Weeks pad can be particularly helpful in navigating those busy weeks at work with multiple deadlines and to-dos. My review here.

Col-o-ring/Col-o-Dex. My friend Ana at the Well-Appointed Desk released the Col-o-ring Ink Testing Book last year as a way to help organize your ink swatches and ink collections. This year, she upped the ante with the Col-o-dex, a way to repurpose those rolodexes that might be sitting unused in your (or your workplaces) office supply closet. You’ve probably noticed my Col-o-ring cards prominently featured in most of my recent ink reviews, and it’s a great way to compare colors.

And that's that for the recaps! I'm officially back from vacation tomorrow (if only in body, and not yet in spirit). Happy Saturday night to all!