I am a huge fan of adding just a bit of gold to many of my projects, and for a long time have used one particular brand of gold pen to do just that. But I recently purchased a second brand of pen, and thought it would be worthwhile to do a comparison of them.
Krylon Gold Leaf Pen (top) and Prismacolor Gold Metallic Pen (bottom).
Zig “Painty” Gold Metallic Pen
Prismacolor nib on left: Krlyon nib on right.
Above: Krylon nib completely depressed against cardstock to start the flow of ink.
Below is a comparison of the width of each of the pen strokes:
You can use the Krylon pen in two ways, to get a slightly broader or narrower pen stroke, but I don’t find it to be particularly different. I suspect it is because the ink tends to flow a bit when you are laying it down. The nib on the Prismacolor pen yields a line about as wide as the “narrow” use of the Krylon nib.
Above, on the right, I have shown Zig “old” and “new.” The old pen is about a year old and has been used; the new pen was brand new, and the ink had not yet been brought to the tip. What you may (or may not!) be able to see is that the “old” pen did not leave a very clean line. I would not be happy trying to use an older pen to draw a fine line. And I could not get it to work any better with repeated depression to bring new ink to the tip. But the new pen is perfect for journaling or other decorative writing.
One of my favorite applications of the gold pen is to edge a piece of cardstock for a card. This provides, in my opinion, just the right amount of “bling” without having to add another layer of gold cardstock to your design. The Zig pen does not lend itself to this, and I have always used the Krylon Gold Leaf pen for this application. I tried the Prismacolor pen to see how it compared:
Hopefully you can see that the Krylon pen resulted in a straight, smooth line, whereas the Prismacolor pen, while pretty good, did not provide a straight edge. The shape of the Krylon nib lends itself best to this application.
With repeated use, though, you will see some damage ultimately done to the Krylon nib. See below for what I mean. I think that the edge of the paper (or cardstock) ends up cutting the end of the nib. It is still usable for the edging application, but it does become increasing harder to get an even edge. I always have a new pen on hand to use for only edging, and then switch it over to other applications when the nib gets too chewed up.
The nib of my well-used Krylon Gold Leaf Pen after repeated use for edging cardstock.
Below is an example of how just a bit of gold edging can dress up a card just the right amount.
Above: A Krylon Gold Leaf Pen was used to edge the white cardstock.
And below is a comparison of the Krylon Gold Leaf Pen (bottom) and the Prismacolor Gold Metallic pen (top) in covering the edge of some Clearsnap Style Stones. There is a slight difference in color, but the quality of coverage and overall metallic effect are pretty equal.
Above: Clearsnap Style Stones colored with Krylon (bottom) and Prismacolor (top).
Below is an application of the Zig Painty pen – this piece is of polymer clay, with a stamp impressed in it, colored with acrylic paint. I wanted to add just a few dots of gold- and the fine Zig tip was perfect for that.
Above: “Polished Stone” technique, incorporating ink from my Krylon Gold Leaf Pen.
The Krylon Pens come in 18 Kt Gold, Pale Gold, Silver and Copper. I have only seen the Prismacolor pens in Silver and Gold. And I have seen only the silver and gold combination in the Zig pen.
- The brands all worked well when new and lay down a lovely metallic gold ink.
- The Krylon is still my favorite for edging as well as laying down larger areas of color.
- I have had a couple of my Krylon pens for years (literally!), so they last a long time. I suspect the Prismacolor pen will as well, but I don’t have the same amount of time invested in them.
- I was disappointed that the tip of my older Zig pen tended to skip and leave an uneven line. I would buy the fine line Prismacolor pen before I invested in another Zig painty pen.
What about you? Is there a gold pen that you love and I haven’t mentioned? Because I’m always up for exploring something new!!