Creating Muted Vintage Watercolour Palette | Blog Post by Kenry

It’s another artsy box curated by The Stationery Selection which included a Kuretake Pocket Pouch Watercolour Set. I’ve been using Kuretake watercolour (regular blocks) for some time and always fall for its highly-pigmented vibrant colours with amazing consistency.

In this blog post, I am going to share how I mixed colours to create a muted vintage palette for a painting I got inspired by another TSS selected item received in August’s box – Mind Wave NatsukaShi-ru Sticker Sheet (Japanese’s retro appliances in 70-90s).

With this, I did a little research on Korea’s 80s – 90s home appliance and attempted an illustration based on this topic. 

I first drafted a pencil sketch and then outlined with black fine liners and Kokyo Drawing Pen in sepia.  They are water-proof so I don't have to worry about the watercolour I later put on will get affected.


The appliances are respectively (from top left) a portable cooking stove, LG camera, a landline phone, SAMSUNG my Walkman and an old-fashioned TV.

I seldom use one single pigment to represent one colour e.g. I mixed black and indigo (a colour from @jazperstardust watercolour set)  to give a greyish black (to represent black); and I also added brown to orange to give a muted orange red colour. In this way, the whole palette will become more harmonious. Although I actually used two watercolour sets to create variations here, you can simply do similarly only using one single colour set. My little trick to turn colours mute/ dusty is always:

Add something green/blue to cool-toned colours (including black or grey)

Add something brown/sandy to warm-toned colours

Here are are the major colour palette I used for the painting:

Kuretake pocket-sized watercolour – super handy to carry around

Handmade water colour “Special Earth” set made by Jazperstardust

-Kenry @canrie 


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  • Jamie on

    A Fantastic blog post!!!

  • Linda in Aus on

    Thanks Kenry, I’m still learning and always forget that I can mix colours.

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