I’m an art supply hoarder. There I said it. If it’s on sale and I could potentially use it in the next 8 months, I’m probably going to purchase it. This mostly goes for pens, canvas, acrylic paint, paint brushes, notebooks and more pens. You should see my office, or more like, room of random piles. I do end up using it all, (eventually)! I want to share a couple of stores from where I like to get my supplies!
I’ve found that if I really need something that is “high-quality artsy” (say, an obscure pen brand or a specific size of canvas or specialty paper) I go to Blick and it will be there. They are my go-to for legit art supplies. They have everything. Plus, they have different versions and brands of everything. They also have great sales, and you can get a member card to save even more.
The only problem is, it takes me about an hour to get to the closest Blick in my area. So if I don’t have the time for that, I go to A.C.Moore. It’s closer to home, and it carries most of the same major art supply brands. It doesn’t have as much of a variety, but it definitely works. A.C.Moore also has a member card and I end up saving a lot with that!
Now, if I am looking for home decor or craft-specific items, like a chalk or oil pen or a variety of chalkboards, I go to Michael’s. They also have a fair amount of scrapbook / paper supplies. Michael’s is like the more homey, crafty version of A.C.Moore. A.C.Moore is the more basic version of Blick. Blick is the bomb.com. They are all important in their own way and I need them all in my life.
That being said, I have stumbled upon some other awesome local art stores with smaller selections of more high-quality products. I try to visit these places every so often because A) I love supporting local and B) I love art stores.
Artist Craftsman in Cambridge – They have a few locations around the US. This one is in a basement and it smells like oil paint when you walk in. If you know oil paint, you know that’s a good smell.
Johnson Paint Company on Newbury – The first floor is an interior/home paint store, but if you go to the top floor you’ll find the art supplies!