Working on some campaign pieces. The printer my client is using is having issues with my files: everything needs to be spot colors—which I have set up—but they are reading the files as having elements with process values. So when I reopened the files to inspect them, I found a weird issue. My COLOR panel still listed the elements in question as being Pantone Black at 40%, but the Swatches panel didn't seem to remember that I chose that specific swatch.

So I reselected that swatch, set the appropriate value, saved, closed, and reopened. Same issue.


enter image description here

This doesn't happen with the other Pantone values I use in the file OR with the objects with Pantone Black at 100%. Any suggestions?

  • in your screenshot it looks like it's still using the Pantone 40% tint
    – Luciano
    Commented Apr 12, 2016 at 8:54

1 Answer 1


What Luciano said. Illustrator has a lot of weird issues. Go by the color tab when seeing the color. Illustrator's swatch palette isn't always good at showing what color you've clicked on, especially if it's a tint that hasn't been added. The swatch palette is a good shortcut for coloring an item. Also I would put your swatches in small list view and delete the unused swatches.

You should check your spot colors by looking at your document in Separations Preview.

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