One of the most common questions I get is about my supplies, and honestly, buying low-quality supplies will likely result in frustration faster than anything! This list will get you pointed in the right direction so you don't have to waste your precious pennies on things that won't work like you want.
If you know anything about me, you know that I am a bit particular about the quality of the supplies I source/use, but these are some of my faves:
Note: this list is constantly being added to/evolving...check back for more recommendations!
These pencils cost a pretty penny, but hear me out! You simply CANNOT buy a better graphite pencil. Don't purchase if you don't want to get sucked in. You've been warned!
Planning on stashing pre-sharpened pencils in your bag? Protect the tips with these pretty things.
Not all pencil sharpeners are created equal. Promise.
Graphite Pencils are a must, and I use them always! Any regular old pencil will work, but I am partial to HB weight and white erasers.
I'm a sucker for a great eraser, and Staedtler Stick erasers are easily my fave. White erasers tend to erase more cleanly than typical rubber, and they're softer on your paper, too. It's a win-win.
Tombow Fudes are such great pens! Fudes have a brush tip and are fabulous for creating that gorgeous downstroke/upstroke dichotomy that makes calligraphy look so beautiful! They come in two different options, Hard Tip and Soft Tip. I tend to pick up the Soft Tip a bit more often because I like the way the brush tip gives, but I recommend them both.
This could be a blog post all it's own, but here are my never-fails:
Gold: Deco Color Liquid Gold (don't even bother with other gold pens...this one wins, hands down!)
Silver: Molotow Liquid Chrome. The name says it all...there is literally nothing like it out there. Plus, All Molotow pens are refillable, so don't throw it out when it's empty!
Copper: DecoColor Liquid Copper is the best I've found.
I have yet to find a better watercolor paper than this one. I love it so much! Cold Press is textured and I use it for most of my watercolor work, but I will sometimes use Hot Press (smooth) for working with markers/pens. It has a great weight to it, and is the perfect amount of thirsty for my paint.
The drawback of having awesome pens is that you reeeeeeallllly don't want to destroy those tips! The felt tip will shred with your first use if you are using regular old copy paper. This paper solves that problem! You touch it and you'll feel the difference, it's so smooth!
Another alternative to the copy paper above is tracing paper. Not just for little kids learning how to draw shapes, tracing paper is perfect to take you from draft to draft of your work with minimal cost, but maximum effectiveness! Bonus points for it being a smooth finish, so your pens are still happy and work properly at the end of the day.
Once the layout is perfect and I'm ready for a final draft (particularly on long pieces), I often will pull out my light box to watercolor/write over onto the product. This saves me pesky pencil marks and keeps the final piece pristine and perfect for hanging.
Aquash water brushes are easily my favorite go-to! They work just like a paintbrush, but you can fill them with water for easy watercolor use, or with paint/ink for an awesome travel solution. The fine tip is my favorite, but the bigger tips are great for large scale use as well.
For additional options of brush tip, these Ohuhu ones have been my favorite. The flat brush makes florals and embellishments much easier than a round tip.
My Glowforge printer has to be one of my top supplies for sure. I love being able to print custom items for clients and personalize one of a kind materials to add to my shop. This product costs a pretty penny but I LOVE it. It certainly has paid for itself in my business! If you are interested in one, use this link to get up to $500 off.
While pens and paper are the basis of my business, there are is also a go-to digital tool that helps keep my business going - Dubsado! Dubsado helps me send over contract and invoices to clients for custom projects and special collaborations. It is a CRM platform that keeps all of the information on your clients in one place. So helpful for organization! You can get 20% your first subscription period with this link.
What else would you like to know? What supplies can I help you with? Comment below.