Kato Polyclay Color Palette | Harbourview Highrise [Sue-F]

Harbourview Highrise Kato Polyclay Color Palette by Sue Fisher1: Coffee Bean
2: Solitude
3: Blue Black
4: Slate Blue
5: Parchment

Today’s post is for all the Kato Clay people who follow this blog. Sue Fisher, a valued member from Australia, has provided another one of her original, Kato Polyclay color palettes. This was in called, Harbourview Highrise.

When I sent the Seaside Cottage palette to you last year I mentioned that I had a city-contemporary version of it as well. It’s higher contrast, bluer, and less saturated than the beach-ey version, and I’ve called it Harbourview Highrise to stick with the same naming theme.

This set of colour chips was rather hard to photograph… if colours 1 and 3 both look black they’re actually a very dark brown and a very dark blue!


SF-006-1 Coffee Bean

  • 8 parts Brown (Kato)
  • 2 parts Violet (Kato)
  • 1 part Red (Kato)
  • 7 parts Black (Kato)

SF-006-2 Solitude

  • 4 parts Blue (Kato)
  • 1 part Black (Kato)
  • 44 parts White (Kato)

SF-006-3 Blue Black

  • 4 parts Blue (Kato)
  • 1 part Violet (Kato)
  • 2 parts Black (Kato)

SF-006-4 Slate Blue

  • 4 parts Blue (Kato)
  • 1 part Violet (Kato)
  • 1 part Black (Kato)
  • 2 parts White (Kato)

SF-006-5 Parchment

  • 9 parts Brown (Kato)
  • 1 part Yellow (Kato)
  • 1 part Black (Kato)
  • 44 parts White (Kato)

Blank Polymer Clay Recipe CardTo download a blank recipe card that can be duplicated and used for keeping your collection organized, click on the following link: Polymer Clay Recipe Card

If you like receiving these Kato color recipes, be sure to let Sue know in the comments section below. It takes a lot of time and energy to create polymer clay color palettes. So I would like to say thank you very much Sue, for sharing your work with everyone.

** Index of Previously Posted Guest Color Palettes:
2009-07-10: Eleven Sculpey III Color Recipes [Carrie-W]
2009-08-02: Six Sculpey III Color Recipes [Carrie-W]

2010-02-07: Kato Polyclay Vol-009-B Pansy Flower Palette [Sue-F]
Kato Polyclay Color Recipes | Spice and Serenity [Sue-F]
2010-02-27: Kato Polyclay Vol-015-A Blue Hosta Palette [Sue-F]
Kato Polyclay Vol-017-B | Alpine Succulent [Sue-F]
2010-04-19: Kato Polyclay Color Recipes | Bouquet of Violets [Sue-F]
2010-09-05: Kato Polyclay Color Recipes | Rich Metallics [Sue-F]
Kato Polyclay Color Recipes | Seaside Cottage [Sue-F]
2010-10-18: Kato Polyclay Color Recipes | Poinsettia Palette [Sue-F]
Kato Polyclay Colors | Harbourview Highrise [Sue-F]


Cindy Lietz SignaturePolymer Clay Tutor

  1. Cara H, 07 February, 2011

    Thank you so much Sue for sharing such a lovely palette. I have mixed a lot of my own colours but haven’t ever grouped any into palettes. I think I ought to try and plan my colours more at the moment I tend to just grab whatever seems right rather than work from a palette.

  2. Trudy M, 07 February, 2011

    Thank you Sue from a polymer clay newbie. And of course, thank you Cindy for all you do for the community. I’m excited to start & will attend my first meeting of the NY polymer clay guild this Saturday for a clay play day. Can’t wait.

  3. lynn watts, 07 February, 2011

    Thkx Sue 4 sharing these colors. I have a hard time mixing my own colors and I use Kato as my prime choice of clay. It holds details so well. Love the Aurora beads Cindy.

  4. Sue F, 08 February, 2011

    You’re welcome, all! :)

    @Cara H: Just grabbing whatever seems right works too! ;D

    Most of my palettes actually start out that way, and then get formalised a bit if I want to keep a record for later. I don’t limit myself to 5 colours either, except for the palettes that Cindy has been kind enough to publish here because I like those to be presented consistently.

    I often mix colours ad-hoc too… but because I’m a bit of a control freak, when I happen upon a colour I particularly like I go back and derive a proper recipe for it so that I can duplicate it later.

    @Trudy M: Your clay play day sounds like fun, Trudy! I’ve never been to one of those… tell us what it was like! :D

    @lynn watts: If you have some time to kill, Shades of Clay has a wonderful Kato Colour Mixing chart (provided by Donna Kato and Van Aken International) that not only works as a great exercise for becoming familiar with Kato’s colour mixing characteristics, but gives you a great reference tool that you can use as a starting point for mixing just about any colour.


    And if you have difficulties mixing very saturated darker colours, particularly if they’re pearlescent, try using Kato Concentrates instead of regular Kato colours.

  5. Mary, 08 February, 2011

    Sue Fisher, what a star! Such a lot of effort (though enjoyable I’m sure – what fun!); thanks for sharing your palette with us. Do you prefer Kato to Premo and other clays in all applications (if that’s the right word)? Mary

  6. Sue F, 09 February, 2011

    @Mary: Hi Mary,

    Yes, I prefer Kato over all the other brands I’ve tried for almost everything. I love the firm consistency because you have so much control, and you almost never get fingerprinting or distortion or similar problems. Softer brands just don’t suit how I like to work, and hardly ever suit what I like to make. I don’t even like the feel of soft clay!

    Kato’s strength is also hugely important for me, as is the fact that I can cure Kato to a very hard finish; I can never get Premo, for example, to cure as hard as I want it to be.

    The exceptions to my “everything in Kato” rule are:

    1. When I want the clearest possible translucent clay. Premo Frost, Premo Translucent and Fimo Effects Transparent White are all clearer than Kato Translucent, so I’ll use one of those for things like cane backgrounds (not that I make canes all that often). I usually Premo Frost in those situations as it’s less tinted than Premo Translucent, and closer in curing temperature to Kato than Fimo (since the rest of the item would be Kato).

    2. When I need to do a lot of extruding. Because Kato is so firm it is relatively difficult to force through an extruder, and while I can apply the necessary amount of force, the extruder itself doesn’t stand up to that for very long. I’ve broken a couple of Makin’s Ultimate Extruders — the green aluminium ones — doing that. I could soften Kato before extruding it to preserve the life of my third extruder, but it’s quicker to just grab some Premo instead.

    3. For the core of very large solid beads cured all in one go. I’ll use Kato for the outer/decorative layer, but if that layer is constructed in a way that makes it prone to cracking (at seams, etc.), I’ll use Premo for the core. That combination (Premo inside, Kato outside) generally prevents any cracking. (If I cure the bead core first, and then apply and cure a decorative layer, it doesn’t matter what the core is… a great way of disguising and recycling fugly beads!)

    and of course…

    4. When I want to try Cindy’s colour recipes. ;D

    I know that what I like about Kato is what some people dislike about it, and the same goes in the opposite direction. Luckily most of us have a fair choice of brands when you factor in online shopping, since nothing beats trying the options out for yourself!

  7. Phaedrakat, 09 February, 2011

    Thank you, Sue! So good of you to share your fabulous recipes…and the palette is lovely! I still haven’t had the pleasure of trying Kato, although I know I’d love it (once I got it conditioned, of course!) I love the cool things I’ve heard, and that you mentioned above. The fact that it isn’t as sticky, & leaves fewer fingerprints, sounds SO great…

    What’s stopped me from trying Kato is that it’s not available locally. With so much on-sale Premo, Studio by Sculpey, & Fimo jumping into my cart at Michael’s & JoAnn’s, I have TONS of clay. Still, I’d grab up some bars of Kato in a second if I actually SAW them in a store. Having to mail order has kept me from impulse buys. I’m curious — for those who have a Hobby Lobby in their area…do they sell Kato clay? I know they have it online. If so, how lucky for you guys! Do you also get to use coupons, & take advantage of Kato clay sales?

    Anyway…I hope to try Kato someday soon. :D Then I can put some of Sue’s beautiful palettes to use…thanks again, Sue! And thanks to Cindy, of course, too. These posts, & pages of information, tips, color recipes–and polymer clay video tutorials–are the best!!!

  8. pattw, 09 February, 2011

    CIndy – How does Fimo compare, in color, to Premo Cobalt Blue. How about the new Bozzi Clay from Brazil that you are testing? I am planning for the future….. TIA

  9. Cindy Lietz, 14 February, 2011

    @pattw: Sorry Patt I meant to answer this the other day but got too busy running around. Fimo blue 37 would be the closest color to Cobalt Blue but it is still not the same, so couldn’t be used as a replacement for Premo Cobalt. The Bozzi clay is a neat clay. It is different in the way it feels to any of the other clays, and is much more flexible when baked. It has a very wide range of colors and the owners are open to working with me to add custom colors should we need them. Still working out the mixing properties as well as testing it in multiple applications. Will share my findings when I have done a little more with it but I like it so far.

  10. Becky C., 09 February, 2011

    Phaedrakat, Hobby Lobby in my area (Kennesaw, GA), does sell Kato. I usually buy Kato for big blocks of white, black and translucent, as they don’t sell the large blocks of Premo. I buy them when they have all the clays and sizes on sale (like last week, 30% off).

    Thank you, Sue, for these lovely color mixes. I will have to go buy the other colors of Kato again now!

  11. Sue F, 10 February, 2011

    @Phaedrakat: The only clay I can get locally is either Sculpey III (at Spotlight), or a few extremely elderly packets of Fimo (at Lincraft). I’d always considered that a negative, but from what you say I should consider it a plus… since buying locally is out I have to buy online, so there are no brand or range limits on my impulse buying! ;D

    I hope you get to try Kato some time. The beads I’ve been making recently are more sculpturally formed than most and they woud be impossible with soft clay. With firm clay they not only shape beautifully, but when I’m a klutz and accidentally drop them in the uncured state from standing height they don’t lose their shape, and only require a tiny bit of tidying up! LOL

    @Becky C.: I wish we had something like Michael’s, Hobby Lobby or JoAnn’s here in Australia! (Although it would be pretty dangerous for my wallet… :D)

    Do they just have the standard polyclay colours, Becky, or do they also have the more unusual Kato products like the colour concentrates, coloured and clear liquid Kato, repel gel and so on?

  12. Gayle Thompson, 20 February, 2011

    Sue – I want to thank you for translating these wonderful recipes for Kato clay. KATO is my preferred clay but Premo is my 2nd choice. I am ‘color challenged’ and having these pallets really help me with my designs. I know this takes a LOT of time and effort.

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