Art-ing on a shoestring

If you’re running out of ways to keep the children happily occupied, we’ve created a list to help you re-stock your art box for about £5 or less!

Keep it clean

Wipe Clean Aprons from Baker Ross £3.95ea
(small size linked here, but S,M,L available)

Something to art on

I’ve listed the lowest price mixed-media paper packs I’ve found online. Mixed media paper aims for a weight and surface that will hold up to drawing pencils and pens, various paint techniques, gluey scrapbooking projects and more.

ARTdiscount All-Media Cartridge Paper Packs A4 from ARTdiscount (25 Sheets loose) £3.38
Clairefontaine Paint On Multi-Technique Paper A4 from Great Art (40 sheets gummed edge) £5.49

I’ve also included these onion skin books, linked to portrait but also available in landscape. They are made for drawing more than painting (though supposedly will hold up to inks), but the onion skins are ideal if your child is interested in oil pastels or other mediums that smudge. They’re also just a great way to store multiple artworks.

Drawing Book with Onion Skin from Conscious Craft (32 pages staple bound) £3.99

Something to art with

Graphite Sketching Pencils from The Works (pack of 8) £2.00
Art Studio Sketching Pencils from WH Smith (Pack of 12) £4.99

Boldmere Twin Tipped Art Markers from The Works (pack of 20) £4.00
Multi-purpose Deco Pens from Baker Ross (12 pack) £7.95
(These are over £5, but they could work for drawing as well as wood, porcelain and plastic crafts, saving money on paint pens.)

Colour Crazy 22 Watercolour Paints and Brush Set from The Works £3.00
Oil Colours from The Works (12 pack) £3.00
Acrylic Colour Paint from The Works (12 pack) £3.00
Crée’Up 12 Pan Gouache Set from Great Art £3.39
Derwent Academy Watercolour Paint Set from ARTdiscount (12 pack) £5.25
Derwent Academy Acrylic Paints from ARTdiscount (12 pack) £5.25

If you’re looking for different drawing materials to keep your children occupied, look for chalks, oil pastels, inks and charcoals.


Let’s Create Modelling Clay from WHSmith (1kg) £3.99
Plasticine Basix Modelling Clay from WHSmith (6 Colours) £1.29
Silk Clay Set Neons from The Range (6 colours) £3.99
Also available: Silk Clay Skin Colours, Foam Clay Metallics, Foam Clay Metallics Brights, Foam Clay Glitter

Kite Paper 16 * 16cm squares (for making window stars) from Conscious Craft (11 colours, 100 sheets) £4.69


WHSmith 3 for 2 on art and craft supplies
Baker Ross up to 48% off selected art supplies

TheWorks has 2 for £5 on selected crafts and gifts.

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