Best art supplies for kids

Arts & Crafts

It’s recommended to store art supplies indoors at room temperature. Certain supplies, such as glue and paint, may melt or degrade when exposed to extreme temperatures.

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Invest in art supplies to spark creativity

Art is a fun, hands-on way for kids to play and express themselves. Whether they’re doodling, designing or painting, each art project taps into their creativity and provides hours of fun.

If you’re thinking of investing in art supplies for kids, you might be wondering where to begin. Start with foundational supplies, which include coloring, sketching and painting sets. Beyond these, opt for supplies and tools that cater to your kids’ unique artistic interests. Kids who are fascinated with fashion design, for example, will appreciate sewing machines, while others may want to dabble in sculpting with modeling clay. 

What to know about art supplies for kids

Safety 

Elmer’s Rainbow Glitter Glue Pen Set

Art supplies made for kids are designed to be safe and age-appropriate. Many of them have non-toxic components or ingredients, such as Elmer’s Rainbow Glitter Glue Pen Set. Like certain toys, some art supplies may have small parts warnings. Additionally, if art supplies or kits require adult supervision, manufacturers usually indicate it clearly on the packaging.

Storage

It’s common to amass a modest collection of kids’ art supplies, which is why it’s smart to think about storage options, too. 

Learning Resources Create-a-Space Storage Center

How to handle art project messes

It’s no secret that art projects can get messy. Even if you take precautionary measures — including laying a newspaper on the floor or wearing smocks — accidents happen. Fortunately, most messes can be cleaned up quickly with the right products.

Mr Clean Magic Eraser Original

Adhesive removers are ideal for lifting residue left by glue and stickers. Magic Erasers can remove stubborn pen and marker stains from walls and other hard surfaces. Stain-fighting detergent and pre-treat spot cleaners are effective at lifting most paint and ink stains from kids’ clothing. 

How much you can expect to spend on art supplies for kids

Basic art supplies for kids, including entry-level coloring and craft sets, cost $10 or less. Mid-range art supplies, such as deluxe painting, coloring or sculpting sets, run between $10-$30. High-end supplies, like artist-grade colored pencils, run $30-$75. 

Best art supplies for kids

Deluxe marker set

Deluxe marker sets include dozens of markers in a wide variety of colors. In addition to the basic rainbow colors, they may have several unique shades.

Crayola Super Tips Marker Set

Crayola Super Tips Marker Set includes 100 markers in 100 colors. Their tapered tips are suitable for fine color work or everyday doodling. The markers, intended for ages 3 and older, are non-toxic and washable.

Graphite pencils 

Graphite pencils are used for sketching and shading. Sets include a range of grades, which vary based on hardness and how much lead the pencil deposits on paper. The higher the grade, the lighter the mark it will leave.

Staedtler Mars Lumograph Art Pencil Set

Staedtler Mars Lumograph Art Pencil Set includes 12 graded pencils ranging from 6B through 4H. Considered an artist-grade set, they’re easy to sharpen and erase and are packaged in a sleek, protective tin. 

Sketchbook

Sketchbooks are blank canvases for budding artists. They’re available in more than one type of paper to accommodate various types of ink, pencils or paint.

Strathmore Sketch Pad

Strathmore Sketch Pad, considered an ideal “first sketchbook,” is suitable for pencil, charcoal, pastel and sketch work. The spiral-bound design features a heavy cardboard front and back to protect pages. 

Modeling clay

Modeling clay is soft and malleable, which makes it a kid-friendly medium for sculpting. Some types of modeling clay air dry into tiny creations, whereas others are non-drying and lend themselves to repeated reshaping. 

Faber-Castell Do Art Create with Clay

Faber-Castell Modeling Clay Set comes with clay in 10 classic colors. The kit includes a few sculpting tools as well, such as shape cutters and push molds. Suitable for ages 4 and older, this non-drying clay is gluten-free and non-toxic. 

Easel

A kids’ easel is a versatile investment in art, as it can be used for upright sketching or painting. Many of these easels have built-in tables that hold art supplies, including paint pots or chalk.

Crayola Kids Wooden Easel

Crayola Kids Wooden Easel is a dual-sided design with a dry erase board and chalkboard. It’s compatible with a paper roll, has magnetic surfaces and includes a supply shelf. The easel folds up for easy storage. 

Light box

Light boxes are designed for animation, comic book art and stenciling. Their illumination comes from bright white LED lights, which last through hours of use. Many light boxes offer more than one brightness option. 

TickTeckLab A4 Ultra-Thin Portable LED Tracer

TickTeckLab A4 Ultra-Thin Portable LED Tracer is appreciated for its flicker-free glow. The portable light box comes with a micro USB port for easy charging through power banks, PCs or compatible AC adapters. 

Construction paper

Construction paper remains one of the most versatile types of paper for art projects. Its heavyweight design and bright colors make it ideal for designing cards, mobiles and other crafts. 

Crayola Construction Paper

Crayola Construction Paper comes with a set of 96 9×12-inch sheets in eight colors. The paper is suitable for all types of pencils and most types of ink, including bold markers and high-pigment pens.  

Acrylic paint set

Acrylic paint is considered a multipurpose paint since it can be used on a variety of surfaces, including glass, ceramic, stone, canvas and wood. It blends easily and is ideal for beginner painters.

Arteza Craft Acrylic Paint

Arteza Craft Acrylic Paint includes 20 popular colors packaged in squeezable bottles. The fast-dry formula minimizes smearing and messes. The paint is non-toxic and can be cleaned from most surfaces with soap and water.

Lettering kit

Creative lettering, or calligraphy, is done with a diverse range of pens with contoured tips. These pens create unique designs and shapes, resulting in artistic signs, words, logos or monograms.

Prismacolor Premier Beginner Hand Lettering Set

Prismacolor Premier Beginner Hand Lettering Set is a popular introductory set that includes two graphite pencils and four pens. The kit comes with a tips pamphlet that explains basic techniques on letter shaping and design.  

Sewing machine

Sewing machines let users experiment with fashion design, home decor and other types of fabric crafting. While they’re more expensive than most art supplies, sewing machines lend themselves to considerable use and may last for the better part of a decade — or longer.

Singer M3330 Making the Cut Sewing Machine

Singer M3330 Making the Cut Sewing Machine, a user-friendly model, is equipped with 97 stitches and has a convenient front-loading bobbin. In addition to its compact design, it has a full-metal frame for lasting durability.

 

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Sian Babish writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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