Tag Archives: Stabilo

New Sketchbook Happiness!

I LOVE Stillman & Birn sketchbooks! So was very surprised and pleased to receive a Gamma series hardbound sketchbook from a relative who didn’t know they were my absolute favorite. My only other experience has been with the Zeta 7×7 series so far, so I’m really looking forward to comparing the different paper types in each.

I am forcing myself to wait until I finish at least my Zeta series sketchbook and my Moleskine Watercolor sketchbook (both about half-way through) – and maybe my own discbound sketchbook – before starting this one, but was so excited to get this I immediately opened it.


The Stillman & Birn Gamma Series sketchbook.

Now, I have this thing where I NEVER put anything on the very first page of a new notebook or sketchbook, and must always make a page or two of pen scribbles on the backmost pages instead. I followed tradition and made a few tentative fountain pen marks, but then decided ‘eh, why not!’ and decided to go whole hog on the very front page. If I don’t get to it for another year or more, at least I’ll have commemorated receiving the sketchbook!

I used my Stabilo 68 mini markers and beloved Pentel Waterbrush, and am impressed with how well the paper stood up to the wash. You can barely tell on the other side.


My new Stillman & Birn Gamma series sketchbook handles the waterbrush well!


Stabilos – the best pen you’ve never heard of.

Looking at my glorious stash of pens on my desk today, and am still surprised these Stabilo pens don’t get more recognition! They are so underrated here in the US it seems.
Anyways, I couldn’t resist pairing the same colors of the cute little Stabilo 68 minis (on the left, different colored bodies) to the normal size Stabilo 88 pens (on the right, all in yellow bodies). Such delicious color!!

Edited to add:
I wanted to comment on availability here in the US. Whereas Staedtler seems to have reasonable representation across stores like Target, Michaels, Staples, Office Depot /Max, I can’t say the same about Stabilo. I’ve only ever seen them in local specialty art stores. Perhaps because Stabilo is a UK-based company? Either way, it’s very surprising. I’ve had to turn to favorite online sources like JetPens, Dick Blick, and Amazon. Amazon in particular has the full set of 25 Stabilo 88 pens right now for only $15, a fantastic deal. I am on my phone now but will add a link later.




I’ve got a pocket, got a pocket full of sunshine…

Okay, not a pocket full, a whole cup full of sunshine on my desk at work – just what I needed on this cold dark rainy day here in Colorado.


Comparisons: Stabilo 88’s vs Staedtler Fineliners

I’ve done color chart comparisons of Stabilo 88 vs Staedtler Triplus Fineliner pens before, but its hard to get a great idea of how specific color families compare from them. So here are some up close and personal pics and commentary to show the wonderful colors of these pens.

The Blues. The first four from the top to the bottom are the Stabilos – you can tell cause the caps have no clips. The colors are reasonably named and pretty close by brand (particularly Ice Green and French Green), but notice Staedtler has nothing close to a turquoise.

The Violets. Notice how the first three pens, the Stabilos, all are logically named and match their cap colors? Now, compare the remaining Staedtler pens. How is “dark mauve” LIGHTER than normal “mauve”, which has the darker cap? Why does “Lavender” have a light purple cap when it’s a dusky grayish Lilac color?? And don’t even get me started on the color that may or may not be “Tuscan Red”.

The Greens. Notice how Staedtler’s “Lime Green” and “Willow Green” are nearly the same green? And look nothing like their caps? Whereas there is a noticeable difference between Stabilo’s “Leaf green” and “Apple Green” (another favorite of mine) – AND the color matches the caps!

The Reds. When it comes to reds, Staedtler offers more options over the Stabilos. BUT… the cap vs color discrepancy strikes yet again. Does “Carmine” match the cap? What reasonable use would ANYONE ever have for “Light Carmine”!? It’s practically white for pete’s sake. I do like” Bordeaux” though, a nice rose pink.

The Orange/Yellows. First 4 pictured from top to bottom are Stabilos, second 4 are Staedtlers. I’m torn as to which I prefer or find more useful, the Stabilo Apricot, or the Staedtler Peach. Otherwise both brands are pretty similar.

The Dark Blues. I really like all of these. The first two are Stabilos, the other two Staedtlers. Night Blue and Delft Blue are some of my go-to favorites.

The Extras: Browns and Dark Greens. I really like Stabilo’s Pine Green. There is one more olive green in the Staedtler set, but I lent it to the hubby.

And finally, the Blacks/Grays. Notice the big differences in the mid and light gray tones!

Giveaway on Instagram!


YAY GIVEAWAY TIME!! In honor of reaching 500 Instagram followers, I asked my hubby, so what do I post about the most on Instagram? His immediate response: those skinny fineliner pens! So in my first giveaway here I am offering this set of the following:

1) new set of Stabilo 88 fineliner pens
2) new Global Art Canvas 24-ct pen/pencil case
3) mostly new (I tested and tore out 2 pages) Miquelrius lined wirebound notebook from Barnes and Noble.

How to enter?
Follow the rules on the pic above!
– must follow me
– can’t have a private profile
– share a photo of your favorite pen or pencil case on Instagram
– tag it with #faustines500giveaway

The giveaway ends a week from today, Saturday August 30th! Winner will be selected randomly. Good luck!

Global Art Pencil Case

So, I was wondering through a local art store one day, idly wondering if I could teach myself how to become the next Picaso with some Prismacolor Premiere Markers, and then decided that becoming Marker Picaso sounded like a lot of work. So I had moved on to the pencils section, and saw these awesome little zippered Global Arts portfolio pencil cases. I instantly fell in love with the size and stonewashed-esque color options (red, denim, stone, black). The 48-pencil case was $18, so I was like, SOLD. I debated between the 24-pencil case and the 48, which opened like a double book case. Ultimately I was like, BIGGER IS BETTER, and chose the 48-ct case in denim. Yay for instant gratification impulse buys!!! Of course, I later found out it was barely $13 at Dick Blick, but such is life!

I originally thought the case would be perfect for my Derwent Inktense Watercolor Pencils, but I discovered I had too many for that. Luckily, I found out it was the perfect size for holding my Staedtler Triplus Fineliners and Stabilo 88 pens, which I was so in love with I had developed this weird compulsion to take them back and forth to work with me every day (I KNOW, I have a problem).

Here are some action shots:

The case is just about the same size as the larger Arts & Sciences Field Notes notebooks.


The Global Arts case opened, with Staedtler Triplus Fineliners and a Field Notes notebook.

I keep the Staedtler Triplus Fineliners in one zippered side, where I can fit three of the fatter Staedtler pens into each of the three sections per side, to hold a total of 18. In the other zippered section, I squish four narrow Stabilo 88‘s into each section. It can be a tight fit, but it works, and I can hold a full 24 Stabilo pens in this section.


Stabilo 88’s go in the other zippered section.

Below is the side of the case, shown with a Field Notes notebook for size comparisons.


The spine has little snaps to hold the zippers down, a nice touch.

Here is the other zippered side:


I like the black zippered look here.

Some older shots from prior Instagram posts:

I tried seeing how many fountain pens it could hold – since I mostly have Lamy Safaris, I could only get one per elastic section. My medium-width drawing pens I could fit two or three per section, as seen here.

Shown with my fat Lamy Safari.

The only downside I noticed with using the Lamy’s is that when you have some on each side, it makes zipping that section just a big more snug. I had to turn the the clips to the side to make closing it easier. I didn’t have this issue with other smaller fountain pens as much.

Packed full!

Just chilling out on my desk at work.

First pic!

Stabilo 68’s with a Waterbrush


While I was thrilled with the color wash possibilities of the Stabilo 88’s, I hadn’t tried out the Stabilo 68 Mini Pens yet. Here are the results in my Stillman and Birn Zeta Series 7×7 sketchbook. I am pleased to see the color wash effects are just as pretty!