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The best calligraphy nib for beginners: the Nikko G

by Judith Joosten 03 Jul 2018

How nice that you want to start calligraphy. Do you also find it overwhelming: the amount of nibs that are offered!? When I started Modern Calligraphy two years ago, I really had no idea which nibs to order. I think I ordered about 20 nibs from the US and just started trying them. I want to save you those problems, in this blog I will tell you which nib is best to start with.

The best beginner nib: the Nikko G
Two years ago I didn't know anything about calligraphy. When I started practicing, the ink was very difficult to remove from the nibs. I blamed myself for the problem, because after much practice I still couldn't write properly. Calligraphy suddenly didn't seem so much fun anymore. After trying all the nibs there were a few nibs where I was able to get ink off. That felt like a victory! The nib I was first able to write with was the Nikko G, which was a very nice pen to practice with further.

With the Nikko G calligraphy nib you can experience the feeling of a 'pointed pen' without getting frustrated. The Nikko G is a medium flex nib, and is a forgiving nib if you apply a little more pressure. However, with this pen you get the feeling for making nice thick downstrokes. An additional advantage of the Nikko G is that the nib 'retains' quite a lot of ink. Unlike flexible nibs, you won't immediately end up with a blob of ink on your paper if you apply the wrong pressure to the nib.

Your first nib is a stepping stone
The first nib you learn to write with does not necessarily have to become your favorite nib. It will help you learn the basics of modern calligraphy. If you start too quickly with super flexible nibs, you will cause a lot of ink stains on your paper. It would be a shame if you became frustrated with the flexible nibs, while you can quickly have a lot of fun with the Nikko G. Because I immediately wanted to do calligraphy with pens that were too flexible, the relaxation quickly disappeared. After writing with the Nikko G for a while, I quickly switched to the Zebra G. Then I quickly switched to the Zebra G and now I prefer to write with flexible nibs.

Flexible calligraphy pens are step 2
Once you have some control over applying pressure, it is fun to try out more flexible nibs. I will soon write a blog about flexible nibs, keep you posted!


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