In my latest JetPens order, I picked up a super cute pen called the Kuretake CocoIro!
The CocoIro is a little pen that gets its name from the Japanese words for heart (kokoro) and color (iro). Supposedly, the name means “color of your heart”. A little cheesy, but sure!
The CocoIro pen actually consists of two separate parts: the refill and the pen body.
Pen bodies are available in many charming colors like Duckegg Blue, Sunflower, and Kiwi. They definitely have a cute, Instagram-ready appeal! I am partial to neutrals though, so I chose Black and Warm Chestnut.
Ink refills are available in a selection of colors as well. In addition to basic black, they also come in dark muted colors (sepia, bordeaux) and light cheery colors (mint, rose).
To assemble the pen, you just remove the cap, stick the refill into the hollow body, and screw it in.
One thing that slightly bothers me about this pen is the fact that the butt of the refill sticks out. I understand that Kuretake wanted to make the pen cute and compact, but why?? -_- It looks fine with the black pen body, but odd with any other color.
I deal with it by posting the cap and trying to forget it exists.
Here is the performance test of the two brush tips I tried: the bristle brush and the super fine brush.
First I tried the “Super Fine Brush” tip inside the chestnut colored pen body. I was actually quite surprised by how firm the tip was! Firmness is good though, as it allows for more control during those super-skinny calligraphy upstrokes.
However, I did notice that pressing down firmly on the brush would cause it to become misshapen. I could reshape the brush tip by pressing it against the paper, but I imagine it might not withstand that sort of abuse for long.
I would compare the tip firmness to another Kuretake pen, the Fudegokochi Super Fine.
Next up was the “Brush Type” tip inside the black pen body. This performed like any bristle tip — pretty juicy but also capable of the dry brush effect if you write quickly.
The ink, while black, is not SUPER dark. Kuretake also has no specs on the archival quality or lightfastness of the ink.
The tip is comparable to the Pentel Pocket Brush.
Something interesting to note: the refills themselves are quite large, and the grip section is thick enough to be used on its own. Because you don’t necessarily need the pen body, I wouldn’t be surprised if some folks prefer using the refill alone.
Overall, I really like the CocoIro! I don’t know why it has taken me so long to try it. They are very reasonably priced and I definitely see myself using them in future lettering and calligraphy projects.
- Just so CUTE!!!
- Lightweight, ergonomic shape
- Affordable price
- Extra fine brush is nice and stiff for precise lettering
- Bristle brush has nice line variation
- Butt of refill sticks out, looks silly
- Super fine brush tip may wear out easily
- Ink is not SUPER dark, more like off black
- Matte surface texture picks up lint and stains over time