Calligraphy Tips

HOW TO: Mix Custom Color Metallic Inks


(psst… this post contains affiliate links, which means I get a tiny cut if you buy something through my link.)

My favorite metallic ink for calligraphy is, hands down, Dr. Ph. Martin’s Irridescent Calligraphy Colors.

It’s got a smooth, flowing texture and stays waterproof and permanent once dry.

In fact, it’s a LOTTA people’s favorite - and it’s often referred to as “Dr Ph Martin’s Copperplate Gold” because that’s the standard gold color that it comes in.

But, I got a confession. I kinda HATE Copperplate Gold. As in the original color… it’s just too dark and yellowy and feels kinda like heavy, antique gilt furniture.

See what I mean?

I prefer a more muted, modern, lighter-toned gold…

So whenever I use Dr. Ph. Martins Irridescent, I mix my own colors!

1 part Copperplate Gold (11R) + 1 part Silver (1R) = Champagne Gold

It’s hard to capture in photos, but you can really tell the difference in real life. See in the photo below how the top mixed color is a lot less yellowy than the original bottom color?


I’m also not a huge fan of the original Copper color - it’s way too dark and orangey for me.

So I just mix in a little Silver and voila! A more subtle coppery rose gold color =)

The more silver you mix in, the more pale rose gold it goes.

1 part Copper (16R) + a little Silver (1R) = Rose Gold

I use these little 1/2 oz plastic jars from John Neal Bookseller to mix all my inks in.

And you can get Dr. Ph. Martin’s Irridescent Inks either on Amazon or at John Neal Bookseller.

The cool thing is - this is just the beginning! You can mix up all sorts of custom colors, as long as you’re mixing the SAME KIND of ink with each other.

You might run into problems if you try mixing an acryllic-based ink with, say, a gouache-based ink.

But, stick to the same ink family and the world of infinite metallic ink colors is your oyster, baby =)

Happy Calligraphying!

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