WFMW - Saving on Art and Craft Supplies

Toots received an easel from Ikea for Christmas. So far its been a big hit, she uses it every day without fail. It has a white board on one side and a chalkboard on the other, which is great because it means no paper.

Well in theory. We all know kids love to paint and Toots is no exception. She can happily pass an entire afternoon splodging paint onto paper.

The problem is that providing a constant and unending supply of paper for her to use can get very expensive. Also if she isn't producing masterpieces each and every time, I hate to say it but its kind of a waste of paper.

The easel is designed to hold a roll of white paper and conveniently enough, Ikea sells the rolls of paper under the same design name as the easel. The rolls are 40 metres long and £3.91 each. Now that actually isn't too expensive, it'll take her a while to get through a 40 metre roll.

Still if I can think of a way of saving money I'll certainly have a go.

The husband picked up two of these at the weekend.

They're rolls of lining paper, normally used for lining walls before painting or decorating. They're 60 metres long, £1.89 each and a hell of a lot thicker than the rolls in Ikea. Also they're recycled paper and can be recycled again. Plus because the paper is so thick she can easily use both sides.

Now the only problem with using these is that they're about 8 inches too wide for the easel. The husband took a saw to ours and cut through them in a couple of seconds, leaving me with two large rolls of paper for the easel and two smaller rolls which I'll eventually cut down into sheets to use when she's forced wants to sit and practice her handwriting.

Now if I can just get her to produce that masterpiece, we'll be set for life.

For more WFMW tips head on over to Rocks in my Dryer.


  1. We don't have the easel (well, we do, but it was a gift for my daughter from my inlaws - TO KEEP AT THEIR HOUSE - who does that? gives a kid a gift to keep at someone else's house?) but we have the rolls; we use them for making banners and tracing outlines of ourselves for drawing/colouring.

  2. Oh...if only we had an easel at our house. As you read above, SciFi Dad explains that our easel is at my parents' house. I'm tempted to buy her an easel for our house just to spite my parents because I KNOW that bunny would use it every day too and the one at my parents' place has been used 3 times ever!

    I love the Ikea rolls of paper!

  3. Great tip. Our kids all loved the easel we had from ELC.

  4. I thought we had the only grandparents in the world that bought a big gift, to be left at their house. What manipulation! We had this easel when our boys were younger, it's really great. I'm sure she'll have the masterpiece produced in no time!

  5. Thanks for your comment on my blog - it sounds like you have a wonderfully creative kiddo!

  6. Thanks for popping by my blog! I've cruised through your 2009 blog too. (Your daughter and her hair are too sweet!)

    We just got an easel (which I found literally). I've always hesitated about the easel because of concern re: paper waste too. We've always had our girls do their art on the back of paper that we'd otherwise put in recycling. (ie: paper that the computer printer prints out that we don't want). The easel is a little unnerving because it would accommodate larger sheets. I'm hoping to confine it to smaller sheets. My daughters haven't used it yet as the craftroom isn't organized yet from the basement reno. Soon, oh so soon.

    Off to read some more!

  7. this is a great idea! it's so often the case that looking "off the beaten path" for virtually the same item yields a much better deal.

  8. This is awesome! Thank you so much for sharing. My kids use paper like crazy, and I've been looking for a cheaper way to keep them supplied.


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