This is an absolute beginner question, I'm hoping it's not to broad, I will attempt to narrow it down.

I have just downloaded a handful of .zip files for several material packages (all for cycle render) and a "Modified Toon Shader" .zip file as well. I am super excited about using these but just realized I have no clue how to import them into Blender or how to really use them.

Do I just go User Preferences > Add-ons > Install From File? Or is there a Material and Shader specific path I need to follow?

And then once I do get them imported, will imported materials show up in a drop down menu of sorts? Or do I go to Node View and then I will be able to drop the specific nodes in and plug them into my objects?

I'm sorry I know this question is a bit open, I'm hoping it's narrowed down enough to be answerable. I have not unzipped the files yet because I wasn't sure if I was supposed to or not.

Here are a couple examples of the files I downloaded:




3 Answers 3


Blender has no specific file formats for objects, materials, shaders and so on. To reuse the material from one .blend file in another, you can either create a link to the material in your material blend or you can append said material.

Linking materials is a great way to create material libraries. If you make changes to the material blend, those changes will be visible in all files that have links to the material file, as soon as you open or reload them.

Appending materials creates copies of the source material in your current blend file.

The process for both methods is the same.

  1. Open the file you want to link/append the material to.
  2. Go to "Files - Link/Append"
  3. Navigate to the .blend that contains the material and click on it
  4. Open the Material Folder and double-click on the material you want to link/append.

append material

After that, your material should be visible in the Material selector.


Open blender then open the project you want to append the material.Then go to file then select append then select the .blend file that contains the material (you should go to the location it's saved to select it) after you select it select material and select the material that you want to add to your current blend file


File>Append>Navigate to Blend file and open>Open Materials folder inside Blend file>Click on any material and click append to project at top (Or double click).

I can confirm this solution does not work. You can append materials till youre blue in the face, the materials you append do not automatically insert themselves into the materials panel nor do they seem to be hidden anywhere else for that matter.

Could anyone please provide a more reliable solution?

  • $\begingroup$ Please try not asking questions in answer section! $\endgroup$
    – Yash
    Commented Mar 30, 2019 at 6:57
  • $\begingroup$ And don't provide answers that don't work! $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 30, 2019 at 8:54

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