Vendor Spotlight: Sakura

Reported by Heather Voinski

It’s no secret that I am attracted to pretty paper and things that are shiny and sparkle! Pens have really never been something that I have had a thing for. Until now!

Sakura of America has been in business since 1921, making artistic tools that are made to give everyone the “Power to Express!” They make everything from pens and pencils, to oil pastels and watercolors, and also adhesives and erasers. They were the first to create a gel-based ink in 1984. I jumped at the chance to check out the pens made by Sakura for myself.

The first product that I tried out were the Permapaque Opaque Markers. I was intrigued by them because I love to paint all kinds of things and really don’t like to wait for things to dry. I tried the pretty pink first on a chipboard box (according to the packaging, these aren’t made for chipboard, but I am always willing to give something a try).

I started my box and was able to cover it with color in about 5 minutes. By the time I was done it was already dry. I was able to apply my pretty patterned paper to it and it was complete in under 15 minutes. Love that!!

I then tried it on some grundgeboard shapes that I planned to use in a mini book. Once again it covered the grungeboard with ease and dried super quick!

My overall opinion is that I love these little markers, and that I need some more of them! I went on to cover 2 more chipboard boxes, and in under an hour had some cute packaging for my handmade Christmas presents.

The next product I tested out were the Gelly Roll Stardust Pens. These have become my favorite. These roller ball pens are pigment based and are archival quality ink. They contain “cosmetic grade, finely ground glass” that they give you just the right amount of shimmer that isn’t overly obnoxious.

They easily covered some grundgeboard letters. Once again, they dried in under a minute. They are going to make a lovely addition to my Christmas Album this year.

Stardust pens also makes a clear version, and I must say it is my favorite of all and will be a staple in my craft tool box! I used it to color in some pretty patterned paper.

Next up was the Pen Touch Silver Metallic marker. This is an easy to use archival quality ink pen that is odor-free and permanent on most surfaces.

I tested this pen out on the edges of the chipboard box I made and it worked like a charm at making my edges silver. The flow of ink was steady and made it very easy to do, even with my shaky hands.

I also used this pen on some mismatched chipboard letters that I wanted to use on a mini book. They were all a different color. I used the pen to color in my chipboard letters so they all looked the same. The coverage was excellent on the chipboard and they dried super quick!

Next I tried out Sticklers. I received a package of Silver outline stickers of hearts, butterflies, suns, and flowers. When I saw these they screamed cell phone embellishments. I got out my little phone and immediately applied some silver outlines to the front of my phone.

I then flipped it over and applied some cute heart shapes to the back. I filled in the hearts with Sakura Glaze 3D pens. These pens took a bit longer to dry than the other pens but it was definitely worth it. They dried to a smooth, 3D and shiny!!

These Sticklers have proved to be quite durable. I work in healthcare and clean my cell phone with alcohol prep pads at least 3 to 4 times a week. My phone and the stickers have been cleaned at least 10 times now and they havent budged!! Something I am really loving!

The last product that I tried were the Gelly Roll Metallic pens. These roller ball pens are also comprised of archival ink and go on smoothly. I’ve found that they give you a little more bling than the Stardust pens, but are still not too shiny or obnoxious.

I used these pens on the cover of a day planner that I made. The cover is acrylic with patterned paper underneath. I took a pen and started highlighting the patterned paper to made it standout. In the first picture I left a few of the green squares not colored in so you can see the difference.

The bunny below was also accented to stand out!


  • Almost all of them are fast drying
  • Can be found at your local craft store
  • Variety of different products
  • Can be used on almost all surfaces


  • Glaze pens do take longer to dry than the others

Overall, I had a blast trying these products made by Sakura. I believe them to be of the highest quality, and they will be staying right at hand in my craft area for use on projects. Have you ever tried these products? Do you think they are something you would purchase? As always, we love to hear you questions and comments!!!

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3 Responses to Vendor Spotlight: Sakura

  1. Avatar
    Melanie October 13, 2009 at 11:22 am #

    Well, NOW you all have done it! Guess I do need some more markers/pens/tools!
    I would love to see your day planner cover (meaning all of it) … looks very cool! I like the collage look to it.
    Hey, one question … how do I get to be a tester? LOL!

  2. Avatar
    nina October 13, 2009 at 2:05 pm #

    Thanks for this great vendor spotlight – I’ve enjoyed all the articles exploring the Sakura products. Very informative!

  3. Avatar
    RosieP October 14, 2009 at 3:27 pm #

    YIKES! The world of pens/markers is confusing to me, a newbie to papercrafting, so all the reviews on these products is a godsend to me. Bottom line on Sakura pens: I want them all!!!