Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014

Proposed Paper Comparison Project



Some during August-September I will be organizing a project to compare the different Clairefontaine, Rhodia, Quo Vadis and G. Lalo paper surfaces and how they interact with different writing instruments and inks.

We will collect the comments of as many people as possible on their experience with an individual product paper–how it feels to the touch, how their pen (pencil or other writing instrument) moves across the surface and interacts with it; basically–what is their experience, and what they like (or don’t like) about it.

The summary of the comments can be a good reference not only for people getting started with journals and notepads, but also for expert practitioners to exchange experiences with each other.

The products I am thinking of including for this comparison are:  classic Clairefontaine notebook paper; Clairefontaine Triomphe pads, R by Rhodia pads, classic Rhodia notepads, Rhodia Ice, Rhodia Webbies, Quo Vadis Habanas, G. Lalo Verge de France pads, and G. Lalo correspondence cards.

People can test each sheet with their favorite writing instruments (fountain pens, rollerballs, pencils, etc.)  and contribute feedback via an online form.  We will publish the results on both Quo Vadis Blog and Rhodia Drive  either in December 2014 or January 2015.

Each person would be limited to three or four different sheets per month (that I can send in a first class letter), but can sign up each month for other papers to sample and add their thoughts.

What do you think?  Are there specific questions we should ask?  Are there any other product papers you would like to try?  Your input at this stage is very much appreciated and welcome.  As always, thank you for your thoughtful suggestions, help and support.











10 thoughts on “Proposed Paper Comparison Project

  1. I love this idea, especially if there were an open call for participation! I’d definitely sign up. :D

  2. This is so cool and very helpful. Would you tell us which kinds of pen, inks, markers, pencils, paints, etc to,use? I would love to be part of this testing if possible. Thanks!

  3. I would love to “play” with paper!

    As an inveterate “Habana” lover and user it would be interesting to compare other papers to it.

    My comparison points would be:
    FP friendly?
    Smoothness, color, ability to accommodate a variety of mediums (ink, roller, gel, marker, light wash etc)

    I always like product comparisons – they are always instructive and helpful to people, especially when they are contemplating a purchase! Great idea!

  4. I would definitely be interested in participating if it is open to anyone. I am comparing / testing different papers all the time already, looking for the right combination of fountain pen, ink and paper!

  5. I am currently doing a smaller scale project comparing composition book paper and how they handle fountain pen ink (so far, as others have found, comp books made in Brazil, awesome. Many from Vietnam, good. Other locales…nope. Use gel or ball point ink. I would be interested in participating in this project and also sharing the results with my freshman composition class.

  6. I really do think this is a great idea! I look forward to the possibility of participating! I know that with some of the pens I use, it can all make the difference in the type of paper you use. :)

    I would be asking questions like –
    Q: How well does the ink flow (and ask them to use several different brands)
    Q: Is it smooth.
    Q: What type of pen/instrument was use and nib size (because that too can impact the results)

  7. This sounds like an awesome idea. I’ve been wanting to start “reviewing” for a while now, and this would be a great way to start while helping you crowdsource the info you need. I’m a teacher, so I use plenty of paper, and quality is so important. This is a great idea!

  8. I dig the idea. Can anyone participate? I’m more interested in fountain pen friendly paper so it would be cool to find out how all these papers behave.

  9. Karen, how do you suggest the comparisons be “graded”? Is there going to be a scale of some kind that we should use (“this paper is smooth – strongly disagree, disagree, agree, strongly agree”)? Will the samples in a given mailing be comparable to one another, or will they be a mix? I was one of the people that checked the yellow Rhodia pads vs. the white, and found myself swapping back and forth between the two to compare as I tested.

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