G Lalo Verge de France writing paper

G. Lalo Verge de France Writing Paper Review

John Bosley Reviews 20 Comments

In the world of fountain pens, smooth paper is typically considered to be the best option around. Pens move across it better and the writing experience is typically much nicer than with a paper that isn’t smooth. Sometimes, though, it’s more about the experience of the recipient. G. Lalo Vergé de France is very unique paper that will certainly make anyone who handles it take notice.

Since G. Lalo paper is made for writing letters, to the best of my knowledge it is only sold in pads. There are some matching envelopes and gift sets available as well, but today I’ll just be discussing the paper that is found in pads. The Vergé de France is the most popular and widely available line of paper, but there are other types as well (mainly found in France).

G Lalo Verge de France paper pad

Here is what the pad of paper looks like.

First Impressions

This paper comes in a very nice pad. The cardboard backing sheet is very stiff and the cover is a heavy card stock with nice color and debossing. It gives the appearance of a very high-quality and luxurious product.

I mentioned that G. Lalo Vergé de France (from here on out, I’ll just say G. Lalo) is a very unique paper. As soon as you handle it, you’ll understand why. It’s a laid paper! What that means is that it has a very unique texture that is created during the manufacturing process. One side, the writing side, has raised lines running across it. It may be a little hard to understand without seeing it, so here’s an image to help:

G Lalo Verge de France paper review laid texture

Photographing the texture of this paper isn’t very easy to do.

G Lalo Verge de France paper review writing

It’s a bit easier to see the texture with some writing.

It probably looks and feels different than any other fountain pen friendly paper you’ve ever used. It truly is. You might be wondering how it feels to write on and how it handles fountain pen ink. We’ll have to put it to the test and see what it’s like.

The Details

Let’s look at a pad of G. Lalo Vergé de France and see some of the details

  • Sheets: 50
  • Paper Weight: 100gsm
  • Binding: Glue (notepad)
  • Page Style: Blank
  • Size: A4, A5

Ink-handling characteristics (A table with the following properties can be found at the bottom of this post)

  • Sheen: Average
  • Shading: Low
  • Bleeding: Low
  • Ghosting: Average
  • Feathering: Very Low
  • Dry Time: Fast

Other features

  • Comes in many different color options, including many pastels
  • Matching envelopes are available
  • Laid surface texture

Actual Use

Since this paper does not come in notebooks, it is only available as a notepad. One small gripe is that the glue that holds the paper to the pad is quite stiff and tearing off sheets can be difficult. There have been many times that some of the glue has come off on my sheet of paper. While it’s not difficult to remove, it can still be annoying. Other than that, there aren’t many features to discuss other than how the paper performs. With that in mind, let’s try it out!

Looking at the ink-handling characteristics above, you may notice that it’s not particularly spectacular paper. It’s not a big sheener and doesn’t show a lot of shading. So what’s special about it? The texture, of course! Don’t get me wrong, it is certainly fountain pen friendly paper.

G Lalo Verge de France paper review test front

Test sheet – Front: Note that there is no feathering, despite the papers texture

G Lalo Verge de France paper review back

Test sheet – Back: Notice how well the ink behaves on this paper.

The main reason for using this is the quality of the paper itself. First, it weighs in at 100 gsm, so it has a very substantial feel to it. I keep mentioning the texture and that is the main appeal. One thing to know about laid paper is that, while you can write on both sides, the texture is only on one side. That is the side intended for writing. The back side handles ink the exact same as the front side.

I keep mentioning the texture of this paper. It isn’t toothy, like some papers. In fact, it is quite a smooth paper. Because of this combination of smooth paper with a raised texture, writing on it is a unique experience. Your nib will glide across the surface of the paper, but will be hitting little bumps along the way. I personally don’t mind it at all, but I’m sure some people won’t enjoy using it.

This paper also comes in many different colors. While I don’t have examples for this post, with a quick peek at a retailer who sells it, you’ll see pads of green, pink, blue, grey and various other colors. Paired with matching envelopes, this paper is sure to make quite an impression on anyone who receives a letter written on it.

Conclusion

For many of us who use fountain pens on a regular basis, we think a lot about our own writing experience. We use pens, inks and paper that all contribute to our personal enjoyment. Using a paper like G. Lalo puts a little more emphasis on the experience of your recipient. Still, writing on it is not a bad experience at all. It handles fountain pen ink very well, comes in a variety of colors and is very unique. If you’re looking for something different to write on, I would definitely recommend giving some G. Lalo a try!

G Lalo Verge de France paper pad detail

The pad itself is quite attractive.

If you’d like a bit more information about how I test papers and notebooks, I wrote an article about my paper rating system.

Interested in trying this paper before buying a pad? Head over to my shop and pick up a paper sample pack.

G. Lalo Vergé de France
  • Sheen (higher is better)
  • Shading (higher is better)
  • Bleeding (higher is better)
  • Ghosting (higher is better)
  • Feathering (higher is better)
  • Dry Time (higher is better)
3.5

Fountain Pen Love Overall Rating

Pros: Very interesting and unique paper that handles fountain pens quite well, also available in many colors
Cons: The laid texture may not appeal to everyone, somewhat expensive
Value Rating: 3.14 Stars, Cost per A5 sheet: $0.20
Who this paper is for: Anyone looking for something different and luxurious

Comments 20

  1. John – I fail to see the point of raised lines running across. How can this be good for the writer or the recipient? Also, there seems to be a lot of ghosting for a 100gsm paper.
    Please don’t say ‘very unique’ – there are no shades of it.

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      Noel, I’d suggest you see if you can find some to handle, or even try writing on. The raised lines add a nice, tactile feel to the paper that other papers do not have. As for the ghosting, it is only really intended to be written on on the one side, so ghosting isn’t something that should be a deal breaker.

  2. I really don’t enjoy writing on it. I started to use the rest of it to make covers for pocket notebooks. A much better us for it in my opinion.Although, now that I use broader nibs I should maybe give it a try again. I assume the texture won’t be as noticeable with a B or BB nib.

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  3. Responding to an earlier comment I’m not sure I would call them raised lines as much as a texture effect. The paper is fantastic letter writing paper and I always have some at hand.

  4. Noel,
    The “lines” are artifacts of the manufacturing process. How can this be good? At a basic level they help write straight across the paper without lines printed on it. They also provide texture, which for some is a plus, especially when combined with the 100 gsm. The weight allows a solid fold, which is more substantial than something like 53 gms Tomoe River. It translates to a more formal presentation than Rhodia, particularly in a cream color and paired with a matching envelope. Lack of sheen and shading is a plus in my mind. Your needle/EF nibs may stumble a bit, but nibs medium and up work just fine when paired with a free-flowing ink. Here’s a link with more info and pics of laid paper. As they said in the olden days, it’s a worthy addition to your stationery wardrobe.
    gary

    http://justinsamazingworldatfennerpaper.blogspot.com/2014/11/what-is-laid-paper.html

  5. I just bought a pad of this paper, and agree that it is both elegant and a bit toothy. The very fine lines aren’t visible enough to use as guidelines for writing, though they do contribute to the texture of the writing experience. I tried a dozen different pens and inks on it, in various nib sizes, and found the paper to be quite absorbent and therefore the ink was relatively quick drying. While it isn’t as rough as cold pressed watercolor paper, it isn’t as smooth as Clairefontaine or Tomoe River, either (by a long shot). The 100 gsm weight is also thick enough that you can’t use a guide sheet under it, the way you can with these other papers.

  6. I have to revise my last comment and say that I put a grid sheet from the Clairefontaine Triomphe pad under the G. Lalo paper and could see it just fine. So ignore that last sentence. The Triomphe paper is 90 gsm, just a tad lighter than the 100 gsm G. Lalo paper.

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  7. The laid paper is very nice for letters and yes, I agree with you, it does give special attention to the recipient. Especially with the matching envelopes.
    Even though I like the paper, it does have it drawbacks too. Not all pens like it. A wet, medium+ nib seems necessary. A TWSBI medium (especially with a dryer ink like Montblanc) turned out to be a bad match with this paper. My Parker Duofold (medium) nib with Iroshizuku, Diamine or Sailor inks loves this paper.

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  8. I agree, this paper may not be for everyone, but it’s very nice stuff, particularly for the recipient. The experience of writing on it is different though, especially if you’re used to TR or Clairefontaine/Rhoda.

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  9. I have been writing letters to friends, family and even businesses for years on Verge de France paper. I use flexible nib pens (mostly vintage Watermans) with various inks (J. Herbin, Sailor, Pilot, and others); I have had great success with all of them. I particularly like the appliance of sepia colored inks on their “Ivoire” paper. The best part of all is the experience of those who receive correspondence from me – people are thrilled by the sense of an older style of paper and ink (my handwriting is press nice, I say with modesty).

    Twice in the past year, I have written letters to CEOs of Fortune 500 companies to complain/comment about their products/service. Each time, I have received telephone calls directly from their offices, thanking me for 1) reaching out directly rather than trashing them on social media, and 2) to compliment me on the actual letter, including the paper, envelope and my cursive script.

    I do believe that the G. Lalo makes a very strong impression because of its feel, appearance and quality. I am, obviously, a big fan of this paper (and the lined envelopes are fabulous).

    it’s important to remember this – after all, the recipient of one’s missive is the most important person!

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      Marc, thank you for chiming in with your experience with this particular paper! I have to say that I have never ventured outside of the white color, so maybe I should explore some of the other colors that are available. It definitely sounds like you’ve used it to great effect and your recipients, whether they are CEOs or close friends, take notice of the quality of the paper.

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