Top Ten Favorite Art Supplies

May 15, 2020

I love to share the art supplies that have worked best in my experiences with kids and art. Here is my quick beginner list to have around for your kids to be able to get creative in a moment's notice.

Here are a few of my favorite things! (This list contains affiliate links)

  1. Crayola Crayons- (And have you read this book all about their invention? Dan the Crayon Man by Natascha Biebow)
  2. Oil Pastels- These are thick and easy to color and blend with. You can also find them in skinnier sticks. I like the thick ones because they are easy for kids to hold.
  3. Prismacolor Colored Pencils or Crayola Colored Pencils- Prismacolors are wonderful, but it's fine to start with Crayolas. Prismacolors make great gifts for the child who is very interested in drawing and coloring.
  4. Crayola Tempera Paint- This paint can be mixed together to make more colors. It is thicker than plain "washable" paint, that is frustrating to paint with because it is so thin. Bigger bottles and more colors of tempera are available, but this will get you started if you aren't sure how much your kids will be painting.
  5. Cake Tempera- It is less messy because it is dry and sits in little pans sort of like cake watercolor. You add water to it to paint, and you don't have to worry about spills.
  6. Mr. Sketch Markers- Great markers that last a long time; be careful if you have little ones that will want to eat them! Crayola Markers are also good; but they don't last as long. I always get several boxes on sale at the beginning of the school year.
  7. Watercolors-16 color pan set, or Watercolors-8 color pan set- These come with brushes, and all you have to do is get a cup of water to get started. Works best with thicker paper, and for the older child, get real watercolor paper for best results.
  8. Round Paintbrushes or Flat Paintbrushes- Either set works well for a variety of ages. For a water cup, I like to use a big (empty) yogurt container-it is stable and holds enough water.
  9. Watercolor paper- For painting with watercolor, if your child is third grade or up, try using Watercolor paper. This paper is thick and lets the water and the paint soak in and blend well, instead of sliding around on the surface of the paper, which happens with watercolor and regular paper.
  10. Heavy White Construction Paper- Works well for crayon, marker, colored pencil, tempera paint, and collaging. It's great to have a supply of colored construction paper on hand for projects, too. It is frustrating to have paper so thin that it rips and doesn't hold the paint well, so I always buy this kind of paper for my projects.

Of course, you can paint or create on other surfaces, too! Look around the house. Your kids can create on scrap pieces of wood, cardboard, or computer printer paper, too. If you use permanent marker, they can also color on foil, fabric, and glass surfaces. I hope this helps you as you look for good quality art supplies that will bring joy and creativity to your kids' lives!

Happy art-making,

Jennifer

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