I well remember the advert, “the future’s bright, the future’s orange…”, well that’s as may be but orange is for me at least a very desirable colour in the realm of writing instruments and ink. So I was keen to review this offering from J Herbin entitled ‘Orange Indien”
Presentation: There is a certain style to the presentation of J Herbin inks. Somewhat retro and with a hit of nostalgia the famous ‘D’ bottles are small, holding only 30ml, but stylish. They have the characteristic pen rest incorporated into the front. My only fault with these bottles is that they aren’t the easiest to get the last drops from unless you have an ink syringe. The neck of the bottle is quite narrow and sadly most of my pens don’t turn around corners…
The boxes too are stylish, they are helpfully designed with the approximate shade of the ink emblazoned on the lid, and they themselves exude a certain french ‘je ne sais quoi’.
On Test: In terms of its performance I can have no real complaints about Orange Indien. As with many J Herbin inks I found it initially a little watery but this often adds to the delicacy of their shading on the page. This is true for this ink to a point though it doesn’t appear to possess the vast range of shading of say Noodler’s Apache Sunset, though to be fair not many inks do.
This to be fair is a different orange than the Noodler’s altogether, perhaps not as bright, or as brilliant an orange, but a more subtle, muted shade that has some lovely peach and apricot undertones when used with a drier pen. Interestingly with a wet pen that lays a lot of ink down the ink is noticeably darker, and in my view more sophisticated, perhaps a more rusty tone which I like very much.
Summary: In my opinion this is one of J Herbin’s most distinctive colours coming as it does with its orange elephant logo on the front of the bottle and box. It s one I always look for in a shop that sells J Herbin inks. True it might not ever make your every day carry, but its a keeper for me with myriad of fun and informal uses it is one that I always keep close to hand.