Retired But Not Forgotten

In my book DecoArt Americana Acrylics are the best on the market.  The paints are everything I want when putting the brush to the pallet.  So I was a little sad when I received notice that 19 Americana colors had been “retired”.  Sigh, we are creatures of habit and when news of discontinued colors arrives, panic and frustration can result.  However, I encourage you to look on the positive side.  NEW-Americana-2oz-Colors-1DecoArt added 15 luscious new colors this year bringing their line to 253 beautiful bottles.  We certainly should be happy with that many color choices.

I think the biggest problem is the inconvenience of trying to figure out how to substitute alternate colors for those favorite and cherished patterns in our stash.  After looking at the retired list, I have decided to make a new list that may be of help.  My list is a “closest color” substitution suggestion.

  • Retired                        Substitution Suggestion

  • Antique Teal                                    Thicket
  • Arbor Green                                    Desert Cactus
  • Blue Violet                                       Ultramarine Blue Deep or True Blue
  • Cashmere Beige                              Light Mocha
  • Dusty Rose                                       Warm Beige
  • Eggshell                                            Sand Grey
  • Green Tea                                         Citron or Olive Green
  • Lemonade                                        Citron or Olive Green
  • Mink Tan                                          Fawn
  • Naphthol Red                                   True Red
  • Orange Twist                                   Tangerine
  • Pansy Lavender                              Wild Orchid
  • Pumpkin                                           Jack-o-Lantern
  • Russett                                              Antique Maroon
  • Shale Green                                     Aloe
  • Silver Sage Green                           Light Sage or Blue Mist
  • Soft Sage                                           Bleached Sand
  • Spicy Mustard                                 Golden Straw
  • Wasabi Green                                  Jade Green

Please note that these colors are close, not exact.  If you decide to lighten or darken, don’t use black or white.  Instead, to darken, try a touch of an earthy color such as Charcoal Grey, Soft Black, Black Green, Payne’s Grey etc… (and remember, just a touch!).  To lighten, use a light color such as Sugared Peach, Natural Buff, Bleached Sand, Warm White, Sand Grey, etc. ..  Also, if you want to replicate the color, DecoArt offers a Retired Colors Mixing Recipe chart (just click to view).

My advice is to be a little daring in selecting colors.  Just because we have “always” used a certain color, doesn’t mean another color won’t look just as nice.   As with any trend, not only things change, but colors change as well.  If not, we would all still be using Harvest Gold and Avocado Green or French Mauve and Country Blue!  It has been 3 years since DecoArt retired colors. I had a “how dare they” attitude 3 years ago, however, after I calmed down, I looked at the colors I thought I could not live without and picked new substitutions.  To my surprise, the new colors were so much prettier and my designs results much more appealing.

So in spite of a little inconvenience, I think we should thank DecoArt for keeping their finger on the pulse of fresh, modern trends.  Be bold, confident, pick new colors, and watch the colorful magic unfold!


4 thoughts on “Retired But Not Forgotten

  1. Trish Bertolucci

    Thank you so much for taking the time to do this. I will be sharing with my painting chapter here is California. You are a true blessing!!! Thank you.

  2. Sheila Landry Designs

    Wow, Chris! This is such a timely and perfect article. Thank you for doing this. It is so difficult to mix acrylic paint colors, as you know, as they tend to dry after a session and even though the substitution list may be ‘helpful’ to some, it is very intimidating to others – especially when the mixes are more than two colors. This is the perfect answer. Thanks so much for taking the time to figure this all out! 🙂

  3. Mary Louise Scott

    Thank you Chris for the information about the color substitutions. It is frustrating when things change but like you said…….try a new color and be amazingly surprised!!! Thanks again!


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