Recently, people from my Fountain Pen Facebook group have gone gaga over Veco Block pads, which are available from National Bookstore branches and Lazada. If you’re familiar with the Veco white and pastel-covered notebooks (which are available in lined, grid, sketch, and dotted variants), you’d understand why folks are excited about having another kind of paper to hoard.
The available size for now is A5 (148 mm x 210 mm) with 80 gsm paper and come in various colors: yellow, peach, blue, green, and pink (like the one in the photo). It is priced at less than Php 200 (Php 176 in Lazada). I bought mine from National Bookstore Shangri-La Mall branch and, if I remember correctly, it was at about Php 150 per pad.
NBS branches, especially those located in shopping malls, easily ran out of stocks of this paper. Now that I bought a pad and tested some of my fountain pens and inks, I can see why.
I don’t own that many fountain pens and most that I have wear Fine and Extra Fine nibs. I have several inked pens at the time I bought the Veco Pad so I was able to do some tests, including even some of my wider nibs (see TWSBI Eco 1.1 mm nib). There’s a brush pen that got included there too. And the paper does live up to its reputation: no feathering observed, so far. Even with the widest nib used and with the brush pen, the paper was able to handle it well. To think that I’ve always run into some problems using my TWSBI Eco 1.1 on some supposedly fountain pen-friendly papers because either its ink feathers or there is bleeding through the other side of the page.
Now, prepare to be amazed.
Very minimal ghosting, if only you’re very discriminating. No bleeding through the page. For a block pad that serves as a desk pad, it does perform well. It even performed better than Midori Cotton paper, in my opinion, with regards to ink soaking through the paper. My fountain pen with stub nibs would produce very visible ghosting on Midori Cotton.
But with Veco Block pad, there was none observed. Or if there was, only very minimal ghosting.
The downside, however, is that, if you’re one who fancy shimmers and shading in fountain pen inks, I don’t think Veco Block pad is the one for the job. Or maybe it can be, if Veco produces a white block pad. All the inks I have tested seem to look flat on it. But then, my test has not been very thorough. When I find the time, I’ll bring out the shimmer and shading inks I have and test it all on the Veco Block Pad.
But for now, I think the test done was suffice enough to say that Veco Block Pad would be a very good and affordable option for everyday writing purposes using fountain pens and inks.
Postscript: If the Veco manufacturers come across this, I’d like to let them know that, please, they should make some white block pads. I’d be eternally grateful. 🙂