Making a stay-wet palette

When painting with acrylic, at least at this time of year when the weather is warm, I think a stay-wet palette is essential. There's nothing worse than investing in expensive paint only to have it dry up while you work.

You can buy stay-wet palettes but it's so easy to make your own. These might be the dullest photos ever to grace the internet, but here's what I do:

Find a tray palette. These are the ones I use for printing. They're very inexpensive, but if you don't have one, look for a large plastic lid or perhaps a shallow sandwich tub.

Place two or three sheets of kitchen paper in the tray, folding to fit.

Soak the kitchen paper with water. It should be wet, but there shouldn't be pools of water in the tray so pour off any excess.

Cut a piece of greaseproof baking paper to size so that it fits just inside the tray. It should stick nicely to the wet kitchen paper. And there you go, a stay-wet palette!

So long as the kitchen paper is kept damp, the paint will stay workable too. At the end of a painting session I cover the whole thing with a plastic bag or bit of cling film and it'll all be fine for the next day.

Thanks for dropping by, back soon with some painting.


  1. What excellent advice - thank you Laura.

  2. super advice. Thank you for sharing.

  3. super advice. Thank you for sharing.

  4. Brilliant!!! I knew I was saving some trays for good purpose! :)) AND I just got some baking parchment which should work nicely. Thanks for the great tip!! ;))) ~ Christina

  5. Fabulous idea. Did you know you can also freeze your palette with paint on it and it will quickly thaw when taken out and still be usable. Good stuff, acrylic.

  6. great idea and easier to clean up when you've done as well I would think.

  7. I've seen this tip before and pooh-poohed it but you make it look like a must. I'm off to search for a tray!
    Cheers Gillian

  8. Great - but where DO you get the tray ??


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