Let’s Party: A short Review of Diamine 150th Anniversary Carnival Ink

It’s always good to start a series of reviews in a party mood… Here I go keeping my word that, despite the fact that life keeps getting in the way, I will prioritize the reviews of the 150th anniversary series of ink from Diamine. So I thought why not kick off with a party, or rather a Carnival? So the red coloured Carnival ink seemed a good choice with which to start, so here goes.

Presentation: As I stated on the overview post, Diamine have revamped both the box and the bottle used to present the inks in this series. The new box is off similar quality but are somewhat more modern in terms of colour and design. They herald the 150th anniversary that they were created to celebrate and each side has a colourful ink splatter design. The wedge-shaped bottle are a nice touch. It is tactile though smaller than normal, holding 40ml instead of the standard 80ml, The bottles are nicely labelled with a the colour of the ink clearly stated and the prominent “celebrating 150 years Diamine” design on the label. The bottles are secured in the boxes to save any accidents in transit as it were.

On Test: Using my normal review pen this ink reminded me of a fruity Beaujolais Nouveau both in colour and in mood. As one would expect from Diamine it is a lovely ink to use – both joyful and smooth and suitable for all brands of fountain pen. Carnival is a wonderfully juicy wet ink that helps the pen nib glide across the face of the page. As my review pen has a very wet nib I also wanted to try this in a finer dryer nib so went for a Pilot Tow with a steel nib. The results were just as pleasing the only difference being that the finer nib accentuated the lighter aspects of the ink but without diluting its richness.

The ink dried reasonably quickly on my stock Rhodia do grid review paper and as with all the standard Diamine inks is non-permanent. I would say that in terms of its shade the closest ink to this is Diamine’s own Red Dragon, a personal favourite of mine, though Carnival is not quite so dark or full-blooded.

There is a fair amount of shading with this ink, which will please those who seek for inks that possess that particular property, and the colour nicely contrasts with the paper giving a multipurpose ink that will be at home in whatever setting is chosen for its use.

Summary: I think this is a great starter for this series. A vivacious red that I judge will become a favourite of many. For me, I’ll certainly find use for it in my spectrum of red inks, what do you think?




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