by Tina Manzer
From Deb Parsons, Queen City Framing & Art Supplies in Helena, MT
“Quality brushes are one of our big sellers. When we talk to customers about how to take care of them, we tell them aboutThe Masters Brush Cleaner and Preserver (1). People are willing to spend a little more to add it to their purchase.
Niji waterbrushes (2) are amazing, especially for summer when people are traveling and doing plein air painting. Viviva Colorsheets (3) are also popular. It’s watercolor on a piece of paper – you touch your wet brush to the paper and you have watercolor right there. It’s perfect for traveling – you can put Colorsheets in your back pocket.” (See the profile of Queen City Framing & Art on page 8.)
From NAMTA Connect’s “Top Trends from Creativation 2023”
Ann Ebert, Central Art Supply in Medford, OR
“DIYing among a younger demographic is definitely a trend. Many of them watch the young designer Simon Hurley on YouTube and then create their own original stamps using Stamping Foam (4) from Ranger’s Simon Hurley Create brand.
“The young DIYers are upcyclers. For their purposes, any form of pen or marker is hot. Posca markers are best sellers, but we were excited to see new gel pens with matte ink at Creativation: Mattehop (5) from Pentel and Decogel (6) from Karin.
“We’ve also seen more men in our store. They’re customizing their shoes and their skateboards – either as gifts or to sell. We don’t need to supply the surfaces because they have them, but we can’t keep stencils (7) in stock!”
From Rachel Kent and Jessica Harvey, A Cherry on Top Crafts
in Saginaw County, MI
“We noticed a trend toward ‘kitting’ for customers who say, ‘I want everything I need in one box. The kits that manufacturers are coming up with are pretty sophisticated, like the Artful Boxes: Art School in a Box (8) from Ohh Deer and the new Experience Boxes (not pictured) for multiple people from Arteza.”