Friday 3 March 2017

Product Review Series - Coloured Pencils | Ft. Color Collection by Conté

Hi everyone, thanks for stopping by. I hope you are having a great day.

I thought I would mix things up a little bit and do a product review. Expect a series. Not just because of the blog title, but because what's the point of a review if you aren't reviewing a bunch of stuff? I mean honestly.

Right now, I'm super into coloured pencils. Generally I cannot use my coloured pencils until the summer months because of the arthritis in my hand, but for some reason this late winter/early spring has been okay for me to use them. So, YAY!!!

The first set I will be review is the Color Collection by Conté. In Canada, they are available in Walmart for about $20 (as of this writing). I got my set on Amazon, for slightly less than I would pay in store.


  • Tin Case
  • Bright Colours
  • Sturdy Core
  • Wood Free - the casing is plastic (I'll get to this)
  • All black casing

First impression on opening the tin was "These look sharp." No pun intended. Well, maybe a little. The contrast of the cores to the casing is very attractive. However, there are no colour names on the individual pencils, and while I know I can look at the core, I like to see the names. OCD? Maybe, but we give names to stuff for a reason. 

I made a super quick swatch chart and adhered it inside the lid. The number is the last three digits of the stamped number at the end of the pencil. The third and fourth pencils had the same number so I added the "D" and the "L" to indicate dark and light. I wasn't able to find colour information online, but to be honest I didn't spend a whole lot of time looking. 

The pencils come sharpened, but that's only factory sharp, and I like super sharp. For sharpening I used a very inexpensive electric sharpener. I found early on with my first set of Prismacolors that manual sharpening = breakage which in turn = sad me. 

These sharpen like any other pencil, but I did notice that there was a warm plastic smell when I used my sharpener. Not really a problem for me, but if you are sensitive to smells that may be something to consider. 

For testing, I stamped the small sunflower from Lawn Fawn's "Our Friendship Grows" stamp set using Memento Tuxedo Black ink on Staples brand 110lb paper. This is the only white cardstock I use for card making as it is Copic-friendly and very sturdy.

The pencil feels like any other in my hand, though very smooth, almost slippy. This could be my imagination, knowing beforehand that these are a plastic casing and not wood.

When colouring I start out with a light to medium pressure, the core feels springy (for lack of a better word) as though there was give and it felt slightly odd. The colour goes on smoothly, though not as vibrantly as I would have liked.

Blending is decent, though when applying the 125 over the 145D, it took more passes than I am used to to get the contrast I was looking for.

Overall, these pencils are okay. I probably wouldn't buy another set or replace this set once the pencils are used up. As far as I know, these are not available in open stock, and I wouldn't buy them if they were. I think that these will likely by my wax-based travel set. Pretty okay to work with, but I won't cry if I forget them somewhere.

Final breakdown:

  • Tin Case
  • Relatively inexpensive
  • Smooth application
  • Standard Size
  • Blend moderately well
  • Sleek look
  • Price vs Quality isn't fantastic
  • Slippy feel when gripping
  • No colour names on barrel
  • Plastic smell when sharpening
  • Not a lot of online information
  • Colour isn't super vibrant (but that may be a pro for some people, just not me)
Hope you enjoyed today's review. I'd love to hear about your experiences with these pencils, so please send me a message in the comments section below. Don't forget to follow this blog over on the right sidebar so you don't miss out on future reviews or cards!

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