Saving materials for future use

If you have just created a material and want to save it to a file for future use, how do you do it?
does blender handle material files? and if so, how do you import it later?

Apparently Material Library VX is currently ported at 2.8, this is integrated into Blender 2.8 daily builds. You enable Material Library addon, and then look for it in Material Tab.
You notice that this includes a Cycles library containing cycles materials. You can create new libraries and sub libraries.
Also keep in mind just in case, that when you save a new material, your .blend file from where you are working is also saved in the current state


Another important thing, libraries and materials are stored in the addon folder from where the addon is installed, that is, it will be stored in the folder where you are running portable Blender daily build and not in the Blender USER folder, so there is a risk of losing your libraries if you delete that folder, for example when you download and use a new daily build. I am not sure if it was always that way, it would be better if it is always stored things in the “blender” USER folder.

@Meta-Androcto , @Fofight , What do you think?


Thanks man!
very useful!
still, It would be nice to be able to save materials as a standalone file format so as to keep in a centralized assets folder (as I do with every other app)

Without the addon, save file as your material asset. Then start deleting, purging, and reverting until nothing else remains except what is required for the material to work, possibly including packed texture files, node groups, and empties (if required).

It can be wise to have a text block to describe special requirements, such as required speciality UV for the material no to fail.

why does everything in blender have to be so complicated???
(right click/ save material as) is what I would expect…

Lol, I’ve asked myself that so many times. All I can say is “It’s the Blender way” :smiley:
Same with; “Why can’t I edit a material without actually finding an object that has it”?
Or; “Why can’t I find all users of materials, textures, node groups etc, and export it to a list”?
Or; “Why can’t I create an override material without having to create a dummy object first”?
Yeah, the Blender way…

Ok, that’s nice! at least I know I’m not crazy!
still, overall I’m loving it more day by day…

The Blender way is to extend its functionality by certain addons when needed.
One worth giving it a try for this purpose is Asset Wizard for Blender 2.8

“Save selected” shouldn’t require an addon.

As an alternate way of handling things, I generally save things to individual files, using multiple instances of Blender running (MMB on the taskbar icon in Win10), ctrl-c/ctrl-v copy/pasting between them.

So for example, I have a file full of mats, including plenty of packed textures; when I need a mat from that file, I open a new instance, copy the mesh holding the mat, paste into the file I’m working on.

This doesn’t give full append functionality, but I don’t often want full append functionality. I want to edit mats in the context of individual files, and treat my existing mats as templates rather than as complete and unchanging.

In addon preferences, matlib vx allow to setup a custom material library folder.
This path is meant to overcome the read only state of standard folder, and allow to store your materials anywhere else on the system.

Oh, I see. But I really think that if the user does not define a path there, by default libraries should be saved in the blender USER folder

I guess some day we will have a definitively Blender integrated Assets Manager that allows you to easily save and share resources between users with native formats, without having to rely on different addons out there.
This was one of the latest proposals:

Maybe the BIS library becomes useful for you: