Saturday, November 10, 2012

Amalfi Paper

The review I just couldn't put up any longer.

(also starring a Pen of the Year 2008)

As announced in my post about my leather journals I need to show you one of my favourite papers: cotton paper from one of the oldest papermills in Europe, located in Amalfi, Italy, right at the shores of the Mediterranean Sea.

Amalfi paper: A notebook, cards, writing paper.

The picture above shows three different kinds of Amalfi paper I have hoarded: the A4-sized 80-90 g/sqm writing paper, a few somewhat heavier folded cards and a little notebook, again with somewhat heavier paper.

One of the most prominent features about this paper is, while all of the edges are deckled, one of them is very rough and looks a bit like cloth or a tissue paper that has been torn apart. It's incredibly soft to the touch.

Cards made of Amalfi paper with a Pen of the Year 2008 on top. Look at the paper's lovely edges.
Yes, I know, this picture reminds of the ad for the Pen of the Year 2008 - but the pen just looks awesome on this delicious paper.

How the paper reacts to fountain pen ink can vary. Whereas the writing paper is very well coated and resistant to bleed through and feathering even with the wettest nibs, some of the card stock can be prone to feathering. For online shopping I can recommend La Scuderia del Duca in Amalfi, they are quick and all the paper and cards I got from there were perfectly well behaved. Especially the ink jet paper is a good deal if you want to make your own notebooks.

The paper is 100% cotton and like all cotton papers I've tried up to date it will soak up a bit more ink than smooth papers, thus making your lines appear thinner. The textured surface might also make your hairlines look a bit shaky, as you can see in the picture below.

Writing Sample on Amalfi paper, done with a semi-flex Swan 3161 and Montblanc Ink of Joy

This surely is the diva kind of paper, but I just love the look of ink on cotton paper - if the pens decide to write on it. Not all of them do, they will start with a nice lush ink flow but within a few lines the flow will cease and there will be skipping. From my personal experience Pelikan and Nakaya nibs will handle the paper very well, Montblanc nibs will provide varying results and Danitrios nearly always fail on it. So if you want to write a nice long letter on Amalfi paper with your favorite pen it's a good idea to try first if the pen will do the job on this paper.
Each sheet is watermarked, even the cards, though the watermarks can vary. This is the watermark on my writing paper. As you can see the paper is taking the ink well even on the watermark.

Amalfi paper watermark.

It's also great for watercolour or water-ink-painting. Not sure if it's the cotton or the surface texture, in any case the colours will appear more vibrant than on other papers I've tried.

Poems by Hilde Domin ("Einhorn") and Rainer Maria Rilke ("Herbsttag").


  1. Hallo,

    du hast einen Pen of the Year 2008, mit dem wundervollen Parkett! Ich wüsste nicht, ob ich damit gut schreiben könnte, hatte nie einen in der Hand. Aber sie sind einfach toll anzusehen. :D

    Liebe Grüße

    1. Moin moin,

      Ja, das sind sie! "In echt" noch viel mehr, da das Satinholz bei Bewegung unablässig schimmert und die Farbe ändert. Ich finde sie auch schön zu schreiben, sie sind halt eher schwere Schreibgeräte, aber jetzt auch nicht unhandlich. Der 2008er ist allerdings ein Kandidat für einen Federwechsel, hatte ihn damals mit F-Feder erworben, als ich noch der Meinung war, dass F das Nonplusultra ist... Nun habe ich seit über 2 Jahren kaum noch eine F angerührt. Ich warte noch etwas ab. ;)

      Liebe Grüße,