I don’t use Parker pens very often, and I guess the pen that I’m going to talk about today is one of the rare Parker pens that I have. It was a gift! An ex-colleague was quite a little into fountain pens and Aurora inks, and this is one the prized fountain pens that he owned. One day, he thought that he was absolutely too busy to play around with fountain pens and to keep them well-maintained, that when he discovered that I liked fountain pens, he gave this to me.
Gifts are gems. Introducing the Parker Sonnet Ciselé Sterling Silver fountain pen!
Alright, so… my ex-colleague is a guy, and this pen is a very manly pen no matter how I look at it. I don’t usually carry this pen around with me as I feel it doesn’t suit me so well (and also because it’s expensive), but from a more “genderless” point of view, it’s really a beautiful pen! It has a grid pattern all throughout the body, which some prefer to call “cross-hatch” – they are pretty much the same thing – and the black lines of the grid are actually chiseled into the body. That means you can feel some texture with the smooth silver metal and the engraved black lines.
Trivia: Ciselé is actually a French word meaning “chiseled”. That explains the design of the pen: chiseled black cross-hatch pattern in the sterling silver body.
This elegant pen has 23K gold trims, although there are different kinds of the Ciselé range of Parker pens. Gold trims are nice and traditional-looking; most older fountain pens tend to have more gold than silver decorations. In fact, on this silver pen, gold trims are a great complement to the design.
The cap is a pull-off cap which closes back firmly with a soft click. I don’t have an extreme preferences for the type of cap usually, but pull-off caps have got to be much more convenient than screw-caps. Just pull it off, and write. Screw-on caps have their charm as well, but as I always mentioned in reviews, it’s better to just have to unscrew a bit to allow the cap to come off, rather than multiple revolutions, which is really quite annoying when you are in a hurry. Anyway, the cap of this Parker Sonnet opens smoothly, posts nicely, and caps back softly (the click is not so hard). There is some weight in the cap, and posting it may affect the balance of the pen, but otherwise, the pen itself it nicely balanced.
I dismantled the pen to clean out the old Aurora blue ink, and filled it up with Pelikan 4001 Blue ink. I love the Pelikan 4001 inks, by the way. Have I mentioned it before? They are inexpensive, and safe for almost all fountain pens. Not to mention the vibrant and no-nonsense colours.
The cartridge used is a twist-filler, which is convenient when it comes to washing and cleaning out the pen.
My handwriting has been getting messier and messier lately, but anyway, here I show a writing sample of the Parker Sonnet. On the Rhodia Dotpad I wrote “A Beautiful Parker Sonnet a gift from an ex-colleague. The nib has a lot of feedback!”
And this is what I want to focus on today. As far as nibs go, they are pretty sensitive stuff. This pen has been owned by my ex-colleague for a decent amount of time, and he might have used it as his workhorse pen (a pen he uses all the time). He is right-handed. I am left-handed. I haven’t tried the original Parker Sonnet nib before to make a fair judgement of the nib-out-of-the-box quality. This pen is not scratchy, but gives a bunch of feedback.
The point is: firstly, gold nibs tend to be smoother than steel nibs due to them being softer metals, and easily “shaped” to your writing angle and pressure. If my ex-colleague used this as a daily pen, it’s highly possible that the nib has already been tuned to his writing angle. When I tried it with my left hand, it’s likely the reason why it gave me tons of feedback (for a gold nib, that is).
The nib I have is a single-tone 18K gold nib. You can also find other nib types, such as the rhodium-plated one or the two-tone nib. When I tried writing hard with the pen, I could feel the nib almost flexing its tines a little! Springy one this is.
I close-up shots of nibs, and I know some of you out there like it too.
Now it’s time for some fountain pen vital stats:
Vital stats of the Parket Sonnet Ciselé fountain pen:
Length capped: 13.4cm
Length uncapped: 12.4cm
Length posted: 14.5cm
It’s a medium-sized pen, with a bit of weight. When I have more spending ability, I should think of investing in a weighing balance so that I can report pen weights on my review posts!
Do you have such a pretty Parker Sonnet like mine? Let me know in the comments!
Or you could also browse the various different types of Parker Sonnets available on Amazon –