Today I am taking a look at the Staedtler Double-Ended Lettering Pens. I bought them off of JetPens for $13.50 USD but you can find them on Amazon. Amazon Canada had them listed at $22.00 CAD. As always, I took a look to see how they blend but also did some swatching in different notebooks, specifically, a Moleskine (80GSM), and Leuchtturm (90GSM), a 120GSM notebook and a 160GSM Archer & Olive notepad. You can find the review video here, and the comparison chart down below. So let’s take a closer look!
Staedtler Double-Ended Lettering Pens
As mentioned in the name, these are double-ended pens: a brush tip and a fine liner – 0.5 to 0.8 mm roughly. The ink is water-based and says they are easy to blend, specifically tip-to-tip blending. The brush tip lid and the marker lid are the same size, so it can be easy to confuse in a hurry. The lids do fit onto one another so while you are working, you can snap the lid onto the back of the pen. The barrel is round and smooth and easy to hold. And these pens are non-refillable and you can’t replace the tips.
They come in 12 colours, namely black, blue, emerald, lime magenta, orange, purple, red, sienna, sky blue, turquoise and yellow, in a plastic box. The colours are very vibrant and there are a number of colour pairs that look like they would blend well together.
Staedtler Double-Ended Lettering Pen Review Chart
I tested the pens in a Moleskin (80GSM), a Leuchtturm (90GSM), a 120GSM journal, and an Archer & Olive 160GSM notepad. The only paper that didn’t ghost and bleed, and help up to some blending, is the I tested the pens on a RGSM Archer & Olive paper. The rest all bled through and ghosted, before I even started blending. The brush tip ends are very watery and created an instant water colour effect on the thinner papers, but with bleed through.
I also found that the brush tips were inconsistent. Some were soft and hard to control. Others were easier to control. This was probably the most disappointing part while testing the pens. They could be fun to colour with, but you will have to stick to thicker paper weights.
The best way to blend the pens was definitely the tip-to-tip method that they suggest. The pick-up method (from a laminated sheet) worked the same way. They definitely didn’t blend well on any of the papers I looked at. The different colours didn’t seem to react to each other when adding colour over the other. It also didn’t blend well with the water brush. The ink soaked into the paper way too quickly for either of those methods to be effective. A coated paper, like the Dingbats paper, may work better. Using the pens as watercolour didn’t work too well as the ink was already so liquid and adding more water with the brush pen caused the colour to wash out very quickly.
My Overall Impression
As I’ve already mentioned, my number one disappointment is the quality of the brush tips. Namely that they all seem to have different flexibilities. I would say that the brush tip falls between a Tombow Fudenosuke/Pentel Sign pen and a TomBow Dual Tip Brush pen, with the softer tips being closer to a Tombow Dual Tip marker. At this price point, the firmer brush tips will become more flexible over time and with more use, so just keep that in mind.
Another mark against them would be how saturated the brush tips are. And not saturated with colour, but with actual ink, to the point where it is very watery. It’s the consistency of the ink that causes the bleed through in the thinner papers. As seen in the Moleskine and the Leuchtturm, the watery effect can be cool, but it’s hard to control where, how, and when that effect will happen,
Overall, I’m not sure I would buy these for using in a bullet journal. You have to be using the thicker paper, and even then, it causes the paper to buckle and warp. Perhaps using them outside of your journal and sticking it into your journal will be the best. There are definitely other, easier to use, brush pens on the comparison chart that I would consider instead.
I hope you enjoyed today’s review. I have more pens and stationery to review, so make sure to subscribe to be notified when that post is published. An email subscription also gets you full access to the From Blank to Brilliant Library filled with free printable layouts, limited release stickers and a discount code to the shop!
As always, let me know if there is something specific you would like me to take a look at. And also, please reach out if you need any help or advice on all things bullet journal and stationery!