Art supplies are the gift that keeps on giving, wouldn't you say? When I was a kid, I remember that distinctly wonderful feeling of opening one of those gift boxes of art supplies that contained seemingly *everything*. You know the ones; they included pencils, charcoals, watercolors, markers, acrylic paints and even oils! When you opened one of those sets, the possibilities seemed endless!!
But with some of those mega-sets, the initial excitement can quickly give way to frustration, so well-meaning gift givers beware, and choose carefully!
The problem: Great Display, Bad Storage.
While great for display, some larger sets of art supplies just can't be stored well after you've opened them. The solution: Opt for sets that focus on one medium and offer a storage solution just for that supply.
The problem: Great Price Point, Bad Quality
Sometimes the name brand alone will do, and sometimes there is a perfectly great alternative at a much lower price point. The solution: You just have to try every single brand on the market, or let us do that for you and check out this Holiday Art Gift Guide for our favorite supplies and recommendations! Take these fantastic alcohol markers for example; much less expensive than the well known name brand COPIC markers, but in my opinion, a solid option for students and professionals alike. While Castle Colored Pencils are "student grade" they are a solid choice and roughly half the price of the next level brand.
The problem: Great Idea, Bad Preparation
Remember those kits I mentioned that came with *everything* including oil paint? Did they come with odorless mineral spirits, or a palette, or a canvas for that matter? Perhaps a brush? Sadly, the answer is no.
The solution: Don't forget those all important art accoutrements (love that word) and look for sets that include surfaces to work on, brushes to work with, a palette or mixing surface, etc.
See our complete recommendations below, and make sure to add some art supplies to your holiday table this year!