30 Gifts under $30 for Visual Artists & Creative Types

A 2019 Gift Guide by Maya + Kiwi

Because this is basically a long list of everything cool that we would want, therefore your quirky-art-obsessed friends and family will love it too. Especially if they’re into watercolor!

*Note- some prices listed next to these products reflect sales at the time this was written. Absolutly none of these gift items have been sponsored or paid to be included. I’ve written this entirely of my own volition.

#1- A DIY Watercolor Kit by Maya + Kiwi ($30)
Sometimes it’s hard to squeeze in an in-person workshop with our busy schedules, that’s why these DIY Watercolor Kits were invented! Each kit walks you through how to paint the image step-by-step and it includes all the materials!! There is even a practice guide inside for techniques and tips!
(I promise this is the only shameless self-promotion on this blog)

#2 Graf 360 Sketchbook by Clairefontaine ($15)
Why we love it: it has a gorgeous binding that allows you to lay flat, it’s professional quality paper, and it won’t bleed-through!

#3 Enamel Pins by The Gray Muse ($10-$15)
Ok, I don’t even wear pins and yet I want them all! They are so colorful, quirky, and well made! These are the types of pins that WON’T fall off and get lost, a lot of them have more than one rubber clutch on the back!

#4 “Mummy Brown” Paint Poster by Veritable Hokem ($25)
Its a stunning timeline of paint colors and what they were made with. When I was an art teacher, I desperately wanted this in my classroom! Any artist would totally nerd-out on this!

#5 BLOOM Coloring Book by Alli K ($15)
This coloring book is different than others because each page is truly unique with floral drawings. Some pages are velvet and all of them are perforated so you can hang them! Plus you’d be supporting a local Dallas artist!

#6 Beginners Embroidery Kit by 9uirkyCrafts ($14)
Most creative people love trying their hands at new skills. I’ve been wanting to try embroidery for SO LONG and I love that these kits include everything so I don’t need to invest a ton of money on supplies. *Note: there are several other amazing EtsySellers that make full embroidery kits so just give it a quick search before deciding your favorite!

#7 Therapy Putty by FlintRehab ($15)
We use our hands A LOT and that sometimes means early arthritis or carpal tunnel. This putty will help exercise the hand muscles to relieve some of that pain so we can keep on painting/drawing/making. I like this one because it comes in 4 different resistances. There are other aromatic putties that have prettier packaging but they don’t actually help your hands heal.

#9 Watercolor WiroPad by Indigo Papers ($30)
This watercolor notebook is so stunning … it makes me want to cry! Seriously I have two and I’m afraid to mess it up because it’s so perfect. The papers are handmade with vellum dividing every page. Lies flat. 100% cotton. Perforated pages that can be torn out to create FOUR, count it FOUR deckled edges. I’m so in love… nothing else matters in life. Except for cats.

#10 Keep Going: 10 Ways to Stay Creative by Austin Kleon ($8)
From the author that brought the world “Steal Like An Artist” Austin Kleon actually wrote this book for himself. We all get stuck sometimes and think there is something wrong with us, in actuality, it’s part of the process! This book does a great job of reminding us how to …keep going!

#11 Aqua Elite Watercolor Brushes by Princeton ($30)
This is a set of 4 synthetic kolinsky brushes- which means they are ultra-absorbent and creates the smoothest strokes! I use these myself and for the value- I recommend them to any watercolorist!

#12 Subscription from Skillshare ($15 a month)
Again, we love learning new skills! This subscription would let us really develop our talents with help from thousands of other creatives!

#13 Subscription from MasterClass ($15 a month)
This one is great for art career motivation. Other successful entrepreneurs share their knowledge based on their experiences to provide a sort of mentorship program online. I find it truly inspiring and I get a ton of new ideas from hearing others’ stories!

#14 Blackliner Pens Set of 4 by Molotow ($11)
WAY better than Micron guys! I will never go back. These nibs will not break or leak and I think the archival ink is a smoother black. It dries quickly so they won’t smear and it’s water-resistant. Perfect for illustrators. (Faber Castell Pitt Pens are my favorite runners up!)

#15 A Custom Wax Seal from Nostalgic Impressions ($30+)
Wouldn’t it be a sweet touch to seal your artworks with your own wax seal? I think so. The basic package is $30 and you can make it fancier with add ons. I especially love that this company produces in the USA!

#16 CMYK Socks by Two Left Feet ($8)
For the graphic designer who loves cool socks, these are a must.

#17 The Color Wheel Puzzle ($15)
Not all artists are introverts, but a lot of us are, and we love occupying our minds with games and puzzles! Plus it’s ROUND!! Whaat?! Also, check out this gradient puzzle from AREAWARE ($18!)

#18 Personalized Pencil Roll from Lezo Store ($24)
I love this pencil roll because it fits everything perfectly, rolls flat so I can see everything, and its made of beautiful leather. I’m also kinda a sucker for personalized things, so the fact that this one can be customized makes it extra special.

#19 The Sketchbook Project ($30)
This is a super cool concept that creates an opportunity for any age. Order a sketchbook, fill it up, and send it back to us to be a part of the world’s largest collection of artist sketchbooks at the Brooklyn Art Library!

#20 Calligraphy Starter Set from Wildflower Art Studio ($29)
This is the best calligraphy starter kit I’ve ever found! Everything is included: instructions, tools, paper… everything! I love it even more because Wildflower Art Studio is a small, growing business based in Denton, Tx and I’m obsessed! They have other kits too, check them out!

#21 Brush Lettering Set by Tombow ($11)
Brush lettering is different than calligraphy, more modern and colorful. If you’re looking to go this route, this lettering set is my FAVORITE! Why? Because it includes a Fudenosuke Calligraphy Pen that has the perfect firm/smooth tip! You can pair this set with a brush lettering workbook to make it a complete gift!

#22 Pretty Simple Lettering Workbook by Whitney Farnsworth ($23)
There are several great lettering workbooks out there, I had a hard time narrowing down my favorite. I ended up choosing this one because I like the graphics and format better. Plus, it was published just this year and I like to root for the underdogs.

#23 Graphgear 1000 Mechanical Pencil by Pentel ($8)
It’s not just a pencil, ok? Allow me to nerd: It’s a perfectly weighted drafting pencil with built-in hardness indicator and dual-action retractor to prevent the lead from breaking! Your graphic designer or architect friend can thank me later.

#24 Aqua Brush Pen Set by Molotow ($18)
This is for that person who loves watercolor or brush lettering. This set has the best brush pens on the market! Trust me, I’ve tried them all! It won’t leak, its silky-smooth, and it won’t get clogged up with fluid inks.

#25 Women in Art: 50 Fearless Creatives by Rachel Ignotofsky ($13)
There are a ton of art books out there, but few that art illustrated so beautifully! This highly underrated book reflects art feminism at its finest since the beginning of time! My only disappointment is that it doesn’t include my favorite female artist: Artemisa Gentileschi. Maybe she’ll make a sequel?

#26 Kids Drawing Necklace by Caitlyn Minimalist ($30)
This Etsy seller will make a necklace based on your own drawing!! I love this as a gift idea for a child or a professional! If you have a drawing that someone made when they were 5 and now they are grown… how sentimental and thoughtful would it be to have it replicated in sterling silver?

#27 Art Historical Action Figures by Today is Art Day ($30)
There are a few artists to choose from and I mean… they’re impractical and adorable. I want them all.

#28 Adobe Icons Keychain by BeCoolDesigner ($8)
I’ve had these pinned on my Pinterest board all year because they’re hilarious and I can think of several people I would want to give these to!

#29 Daylight UnoLamp ($27)
Speaking for myself, having ample natural lighting shining through my workspace is a struggle. This lamp is a simple solution that comes in two variations: the table lamp and the clamp lamp. Both are energy efficient and dimmable. This makes it perfect for working on projects, having enough lighting for timelapse videos, and photographing art once it’s finished.

#30 Pantone: The Game ($24)
It’s just so pretty!!! Honestly, anything from Pantone would make me happy, but this game in minimal, creative, and although art nerds would love it the most- anyone can play it! It’s like Apples to Apples or Cards Against Humanity… but with pretty colors!


Rubeena Ianigro · November 26, 2019 at 5:28 pm

This guide is awesome! I love that waterproof notepad so much!! Thank you for featuring The Gray Muse Enamel Pins in your guide. I’m honored. <3

    Maya · November 26, 2019 at 11:41 pm

    Yes, girl, I saw the quotes Pad in my cousin’s shower and needed it immediately! You are so welcome!

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