Caran d’Ache Aquarelle Museum Watercolor Pencils

12-80 count pack

wax core

hexagonal barrel



Smooth, Buttery Application

Extremely Vivid Color

Strong Lead

Beautiful Packaging



Somewhat Limited Color Choices

Check Current Prices on Amazon

Caran d’Ache Aquarelle Museum Watercolor Pencils Review

The Caran d’Ache Aquarelle Museum watercolor pencils are unique in that they combine extra-fine pigments in high concentration with the water-solubility of their standard watercolor lines into this bright and vibrant premium pencil line.  The 3.8mm lead is soft and quite versatile, being just at home in detailed areas as in larger areas.  Application is smooth and buttery and blending is a breeze.  This product is wax-based, wrapped in a hexagonal barrel, and are available in sizes ranging from 12 to 80.

Visual Appeal – 4.5/5

These are some of the most intense watercolor pencils we have come across.  The inclusion of additional extra fine pigment into the lead is noticeable, and the result is an extremely powerful level of color output.  Despite the intensity, output is smooth and there is little evidence of graininess or color manipulation.  They blend well enough by themselves but with the addition of water some really interesting color hues and patterns can be created and controlled.  Color choices might be a bit lacking in the smaller sets but with the 80-piece you shouldn’t have any issues.  There are also sets (landscape, for example) that hone in on certain color palettes.

Usability and Durability – 5/5

These are extremely smooth and output and buttery.  Lightfastness issues aren’t a concern and the color intensity can easily be altered with additional passes or simply adding some water.  The pencils are well-made and the lead is quite strong and easy to sharpen to whatever point you need with a sharpener.  You can also put on multiple layers, even varying colors, without worry.  You can tell that Caran d’Ache has a good understanding of what needs to go into colored pencil lead.

Packaging and Presentation – 4.5/5

The pencils come in either a strong box or gorgeous wooden case.  Both have molded slots for each pencil which mean that they are well-protected and look very attractive.  The pencil itself is unique in that it is wrapped in a matte black outside varnish with the base being color-matching to the color of the pencil.  The necessary pencil information in including brand, type, and color are stamped on the outside.

Cost – 3/5

Similar to most of Caran d’Ache’s offerings, these are premium pencils and come at a premium price.  You get what you pay for.

Overall Ranking – 4.5/5

Arguably the brightest color output of any watercolor pencil on the market, the Aquarelle Museum are a fantastic product.  Color depth is impressive as well as the ability to blend both dry and especially wet.  There are enough color choices to make most people happy and the entire package looks extremely professional both via the pencils themselves as well as their case.  If you want some of the best on the market you just better be ready to open up your wallet pretty wide.

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