Surprisingly, I’ve got a short post for you today. I’ve written about my ink cataloging methods before. I’ve swabbed far too many inks at this point to change my system. That said, if I could go back in time, I wouldn’t choose my current system.
Having seen many methods, my favorite is the one used by many pen stores: pocket sleeves in a binder. Vanness Pens has a post on Instagram that shows one of their binders of swabs (take a look around the 4:38 mark). The biggest pro to that method — for me — is being able to reorganize the swabs. Beyond that, you can use any paper you want to. And the swabs are more easily portable/storable than the col-o-ring. You can easily use sticky notes or washi tape to note which inks you own, or want to buy.
The downside, however, is the price. I’m fairly sure that the price of the binder, paper, and packs of sleeves will add up faster than a standard notebook. It may even end up being more than Col-o-rings.
OK… I was wrong. I looked up pocket sleeves on Amazon, and perhaps it wouldn’t be much more expensive. You can get 30 pages for $6.99. With 9 pockets per sleeve, and putting two swabs (front and back) in each pocket, you can store 540 swabs in that. And a binder isn’t exactly super pricey. So, more expensive than a notebook, but probably about even with a Col-o-ring ($10 – $15 for 100 cards, depending on which size you want).
So, tell me, how do you catalog your inks? What are the pros and cons to your system? Let me know in the comments.