Loading... Please wait...

Thin Paper Show-Through

You probably already know about the great characteristics of Tomoe River Paper - namely, its pleasant color, smooth surface, and resistance to feathering and bleed-through. It has a reputation like no other paper.


You also know that its extreme thinness allows writing on one side to "show-through" or "echo" to the other side. It is an issue not just for Tomoe River paper but for just about any thin, light-colored paper.


This show-through may be enough of an issue for some people to avoid thin papers all together, which is a shame, so I would like to offer a solution for eliminating or at least minimizing the distraction of show-through while writing.


The pictures and captions below demonstrate how a dark-colored sheet of paper underneath the Tomoe River page can minimize show-through to the side you are writing on.


If you prefer to use a lined underlay sheet, i.e. a white sheet with black lines, simply switch to a black sheet with white lines. Both types of sheets can be found on the resources page.


Of course, if you usually write on only one side of the page - nevermind!


Thanks for looking and if you have any suggestions, please contact me via dave@nanamipaper.com.



How to minimize show-through of dark inks on thin light/white paper

1. This is a typical dark fountain-pen ink used with a broad nib.



2. This is the reverse side of the same page. There is no bleed-through, but the writing does show through fairly clearly. It doesn't bother everyone, but for some it can be a distraction.




3. Now look what happens when you put a dark sheet of paper under the page: the show-through all but disappears. In fact, the sheet isn't even that dark; I just asked my daughter to hand me something that wasn't white.



4. Here is the same page with writing on both sides and no dark underlay sheet. The show-through is probably more of a distraction for writing than for reading (in my opinion).



5. Here is the same page with the dark sheet underneath. The show-through is barely visible.



6. If you prefer lined underlay sheets to help guide writing, a black sheet with white lines (as opposed to a white sheet with black lines) will minimize the show through. Note that the reverse-side writing is hardly visible, but you can still see the lines. These white-lined sheets are available for download on the resources page.



7. Writing in a notebook is a bit different situation. The tricks above still apply, but as you can see from the pics of the Tomoe River notebook below, the combined show-through of writing on prior pages becomes a sort of "white noise". I would not call it distracting or even displeasing.


As a final note, show-through is not as much of an issue with finer nibs and normal inks. It stands out more with wide nibs and really dark inks.