Hobby Hacks – Cheap mixing pots

Are you making a mess everytime you need to mix up some pigment powders? Are you tired of spilling homebrew washes all over the palette when you’re weathering and shading models? Well then I’ve got the perfect hobby life hack that will make you spend an extra 10 minutes by the dairy products the next time you’re in the grocery store. In this short article I’ll share some tips on how to get free mixing pots whenever you go grocery shopping to cover your basic artistic needs.

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The art of seeing things for what they are
I use a wide variety of washes and pigment powders when I paint and weather my miniatures. In order to stir the mixes and get the right consistency between medium and pigment I use a stainless steel mixing pot that I bought from an old art store in town. However if you’re not careful when cleaning your mixing pots you’ll end up leaving some pigments behind that can really mess up the tone of future mixes. To be able to spend my hard earned money on more miniatures rather than new pots, I therefore started to scavenge old pot-like containers to use whenever I need to mix washes in different colors. Enter the plastic bottle cap.

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My collection of makeshift mixing pots. From left to right: 1. a plastic pastry container that used to hold some sort of pudding – perfect for when I work with water based decals. 2. a collection of plastic bottle caps from soda and juice bottles as well as milk cartons. 3. a plastic shot glass that are sold in packages of 20! 4. my old mixing pots in stainless steel.

Most dairy products and other beverage containers come with plastic bottle caps that are meant for recycling nowadays. I found that these caps make perfect one-use mixing pots although you can use them several times as long as you stick to the same tone. This way I can use separate pots for different colors and thereby avoid messing up my mixes with leftover pigments and residue. There’s no need to explain the rest as you probably get the point. So, instead of throwing away your old bottle caps clean them out thoroughly and use them for mixing colors and washes instead. They’re cheap (they’re almost free as long as your pay for the milk!) and they work perfect for mixing smaller batches of color.

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