6th May 2016 SuziIID

Letraset Tria, Faber Castell & Johanna Basford!

Letraset Tria

Letraset Tria, Faber Castell & Johanna Basford.

Creative play time!


Having bought a couple of Johanna Basford‘s colouring books for grown-ups as Birthday gifts for other people, I found myself hankering for one of my own. After quite a bit of unsuccessful hint dropping, a copy of ‘Secret Garden’ accidentally fell into my shopping trolley shortly before Christmas, that had ‘Present for Mummy’ written all over it! Sure enough on Christmas morning, there it was… My very own colouring book!

So, like a kid at Christmas I rushed straight in… except that’s not how it happened at all.

Pens. I needed pens, and not just any pens would do, I wanted some that I could hopefully use for my illustrative work too. I’d made a decision, I wanted a nice set of Chameleon alcohol pens! HOW MUCH?! I wanted a nice set of cheaper alcohol pens (cue hours of googling reviews).

I finally decided on the Letraset Tria pens, partly because they have the choice of 3 nibs and partly because they were on offer from Fred Aldous. I chose the ‘Visualisation’ set and waited with excited anticipation for them to arrive.

Letraset Tria Visualisation Set

Overall, I was quite impressed with the pens but there are a few niggling issues I have with them, mostly down to the dual end which has the fine detailing nib and the larger chisel nib. I find it awkward to remove the lid on the fine tip without it taking the nib with it, exposing the chisel nib. Also, they don’t seem to have a very good closure and easily open up when they’re being pushed back into the case slots. This also creates an issue in itself… drying out! I was disappointed to find some of the nibs had dried out when I received them, but shrugged it off due to them being reduced in price. That said, had I paid full price for them I wouldn’t be happy at all!

I did like the handle of the pens and the brush nib feels firm enough to have control, but flexible enough to work with brush strokes. I am enjoying them but I have really only just begun experimenting with them. Looking forward to testing their blending capabilities!

Letraset Tria


After catching the colouring bug, and having a Birthday soon after Christmas, the next additions to my art supplies were a set of 24 Faber Castell Polychromos pencils and a graphite sketch set (6 pencils ranged 2H -6B).  I have to say, I really love the Polychromos colours, a really nice range of colours with a good soft application which make them very easy to control the flow and blend of the colour. The graphite pencils also seem really good quality.

 Faber Castell Polychromos

Faber Castell Graphite

For the second colouring from the Secret Garden book, I decided to use a combination of all 3 mediums. Using the graphite range for shading in the outer edges of the heart, the Letreset Tria pens for the connecting tendrils and the Faber Castell set to blend the red colours to the center of the heart. I had fun with it and my daughter thought colouring together was great!

Johanna Basford Secret Garden

Have you used any of the mediums mentioned? What are your opinions on them? I’d love to hear what you think to them and any tips/techniques you find work well with them… Thanks for reading!

Heart Colouring Shades:

Faber Castell Graphite:
2H, B & 4B
Faber Castell Polychromos:
Rose Charmine
Pale Geranium Lake
Dark Carmine
Letraset Tria:

(I also used an Edding 1800 Profipen 0.1 for the black borders)

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