The Mini Palette v2 (2019) from Peggy Wong

Here's the updated model of The Mini Palette made by my friend Peggy Wong. Back when I reviewed it two years ago, I felt it was too small. This newer model is now bigger.

Here's the size compared to a bijou watercolour box

The Mini Palette is currently available from Peggy's Etsy shop and it's selling at US $30, not including shipping. It comes with a tin box and three trays. The magnetic clip is an extra $1.

There are two trays with 12 wells. One's stuck to the back of the tin box with some blu/white-tack. The other's a loose tray that you can attached to the side of the tin case.

The mixing tray is double sided. There's a single large surface on one side, and two wells on the other.

These trays can be clipped onto the side of the tin case easily.

Build quality is solid. These trays are all 3D printed so there are horizontal lines and groves.

The inside of the lid is glossy and is not nice for mixing paint. You can spread the paint or water out but it will just pool together into a small area again. It's much nicer to mix on the plastic mixing wells.

You can see how the paint/water behaves in the video review above.

It would actually be nice to have two mixing trays rather than two paint trays. Right now, there's no way to choose which configuration you want from the Etsy shop. So by default, you'll get one mixing tray and two paint holding trays.

You can buy additional trays and they are around US $8 each. So you can actually have palettes for specific themes. For example, you can have a palette for painting landscapes, another for painting portraits. You can bring the ones you want out and leave the one's you aren't using at home.

I highly recommend getting the magnetic clip because it allows you to clip the palette on your sketchbook. The magnet is quite strong and will stick to the tin case tightly. It's a standalone so if you don't need it, you won't have to bring it out either.

With this setup, you don't have to hold the palette in hand and it gives you easy access to your paint.

The amount of paint each well can hold is maybe half or one third compared to a typical half pan. If you're going for a long overseas sketching trip, that may not be enough paint. You can fill the other paint tray with more paint though.

It would be good to have, maybe, a tray with just six wells but have them larger. Currently, these are the only tray designs available.

The brush size I recommend for use with this palette is a size 6. You can probably use a size 8 too if you want to. This palette is not suitable for painting on large pieces of paper. You're limited by brush size and the amount of paint you can mix on those small mixing wells.

Another thing to note is, tin can rust. This box has been coated with paint throughout but with wear and tear, the exposed parts may rust in the future. And if you're mixing on the metal lid, paint is going to stain that part.

So is it worth the money? Well, you decide.

Check out her Etsy page for reviews from past customers:

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