Art Supplies · Art/Crafts · Subscription Boxes

ScrawlrBox October 2019 – 50th Box!

It’s been a wee while since I’ve done a post on a ScrawlrBox. I really should take a better box image… works for the purpose though. What we care about is the contents! And for some reason, my images have come out a little grainy… I’m sorry about that!

Scrawlrbox is a monthly art subscription box that dispatches around the middle of the month. It costs £15 including delivery and comes with a variety of supplies each month. You can check out my reviews of previous boxes if you’d like.

I opened my box and instantly recognised the A5 print included from the monthly featured artist; DrawingWiffWaffles! I follow her on YouTube after I looked up to see what others were doing with their boxes when I was stumped one month. I really like her work! Alongside her art were two sheets of Canson “Off the Wall” 220gsm paper, which, I know from past experience, is an excellent paper!

Every box comes with a bookmark-sized card with a list of the boxes contents and the “ScrawlrChallenge” for the month. This months challenge is “Dressed to the nines.” It also comes with a ScrawlrBox sticker which has a unique design each month and a candy – this month has Parma Violets which is pretty adorable considering the purple theme.

I was really pleased by this months offering. I was immediately excited by the first item on the list!

  • Copic Purple Doodle Pack – I was so excited to see this, even though I already own one of the colours. I really like little sets like this. Containing two Copic Ciao markers in the colours Mauve Shadow (BV00) and Blue Berry (BV04), Atyou Spica Glitter pen in Pink and a Copic Multiliner 0.3mm in Wine. Copic markers are alcohol based and can be blended together for a variety of tones and effects. They’re really fun, but they do feather and bleed on a lot of papers. The multiliner is just a wine coloured fineliner and is pretty great, it goes nicely with the other products. I don’t really rate the Atyou Spica Glitter pen – not a fan of the nib, but it is a nice touch of sparkle without being too heavy. I did tests of all of the products which I’ll show later in this post, but I can’t capture the glitter.
  • Faber Castell Dessin Pencil (HB) – It’s a HB pencil. There isn’t a whole lot to say about it. It feels sturdy and the lead doesn’t feel fragile.
  • Derwent Paint Pen (White) – Tested below over the top of black Sharpie as it won’t really show on the off-white paper very well. I also tried it over all of the other items. I have other Derwent Grafik paint pens, so I was familiar with this type of pen, but white pens are always handy for details. While the ink is wet, you can add water to them and dilute it and use it a little like paint, but it’s permanent once it’s dry. It worked well over the other mediums, but wasn’t entirely opaque, but you can wait for it to dry and go over it for better coverage.
  • Lyra Kneadable Eraser – These things are so handy. I don’t think it matches the other products in the box, but I know kneadable erasers are a preference of the featured artist and feel like that may be why they chose to include this. I’m not complaining. it comes in its own little box to keep it in, which is really cool as most of the time, this type of eraser doesn’t have reuseable packaging. It’s pretty firm but easily malleable and I personally quite like using these, plus it means no bits of eraser everywhere.
  • Canson “The Wall” 220gsm Paper – This paper isn’t the heaviest weight but despite that, it really handles solvent based markers very well. It has a coating that means the alcohol markers don’t really bleed or feather and it can handle quite a lot. I’ve used the paper before but I’m not too heavy with markers generally, so I haven’t really put it through it’s paces to test the claim – but apparently, it can easily handle double-sided use.

The last item in the box, that I didn’t mention above, is a special item to celebrate this being their 50th box. How cool is that? It’s a little ScrawlrBox pin and I love it. I was so pleasantly surprised to find this alongside this months sticker – still a big fan of how they upped their sticker game about a year and a half ago! I’m so pleased to see this box enjoying such success. I’ve been subscribed for quite a while now and while some boxes aren’t always for me, it’s always a fun experience. I do enjoy sharing my thoughts on them. While I don’t always write a blog post, I do always tweet my thoughts about the boxes when they come through!

All in all, I was really pleased with this box. All of the supplies will be utilised and so I’m really happy about that. I don’t think I’ll end up doing this months challenge if I’m honest – I really struggle with coming up with things for them but I always keep the cards for future inspiration!

Here’s to many more boxes of surprise art supplies!

Bookish · disability · Health · Life · Uncategorized

Why Kindle is superior to the Paperback

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Ooo, that’s right, I said it, I went there! Kindle > Paperbacks.

For many moons, or well, just the one moon, technically, but, it’s been a while; people have argued that paperbacks are, and will always be superior when compared to the sinful e-book. Okay, so I’ll admit, I hands down prefer having a physical form of book, the delight of a paperback in my hands, over my e-reader. There’s the weight, the feel of the pages, the sound when you turn them, that book smell and just… there’s a beauty to it, I’m sure you know what I mean. However, my Kindle is far superior – for some reasons, you may not have even considered.

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There are some obvious perks to an e-reader. They save space, they allow you to take an entire library while traveling while occupying only a sliver of the space, e-books are often cheaper, have 99p/introductory offers or some are even free. There are also some less obvious perks. After discussing this with numerous friends, they admitted they’d not really thought about them.

One word. Accessibility. Yeah, paperbacks are great. When was the last time you saw a large print version of a new release by your favourite author? That’s right. Large print books are often more expensive and have far less variety and availability compared to a standard print edition. An e-reader eliminates this worry because not only can a kindle books font size be increased, but the font can be changed to one of a variety that a visually impaired person may find easier to view and at no further cost to them.

Speaking of fonts; what about Dyslexia? Some dyslexic people find it very difficult to try and read a book. An e-reader helps in many ways. As well as being able to adjust the font size, margins and line spacing can be adjusted to change the format of a page which someone with dyslexia, cognitive dysfunction, a learning disability or other impairment may find incredibly beneficial. As well as this, I can’t speak for other e-readers, but the newer versions of Kindle have a font available called OpenDyslexic. This is a special font that adds weight to the bottom of lettering in an attempt to help ease some of the difficulties someone with dyslexia may experience while trying to read.

All these options make reading more accessible to those who may not ordinarily be able to read, or experience great difficulty in doing so. I adore reading, there is nothing like diving in to a book and immersing yourself in an entirely different world, but when your brain isn’t keeping up, it can be really difficult. Okay, so it’s not traditional and it doesn’t have the same charm as a paperback, but what’s the point in all that charm if you can’t enjoy it?

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So, reconsider an e-reader. Users of e-readers may love books just as much as you do, maybe even more so. If you love books that much, surely you want as many people as possible to enjoy the books you love. If an e-reader helps them do that, then surely that’s a wonderful thing?

What do you think? Do you use an e-reader? Physical books only? Have I changed how you perceive e-readers? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Art Supplies · Art/Crafts · Subscription Boxes · Uncategorized

ScrawlrBox (March Contents)

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ScrawlrBox is a monthly art supply subscription box which I have grown to love. The first time I ever got the box, admittedly, I didn’t rate it and immediately unsubscribed. However, I kept an eye on the boxes since then and decided to give it another go as every other box I had seen, I thought looked really good. Since re-subscribing, ScrawlrBox has failed to disappoint, in so far as products go at least.

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As you can see, the packaging is less than exciting, and for March’s box, it was inadequate; more on that in a moment.
One of the upsides about this box, is that it’s a slim box that fits perfectly through the letterbox, so no waiting around for the postie. Each box’s contents are wrapped in tissue paper with a sticker. As for the contents themselves, well, every box has the same sort of format. You get a few art supplies, a print with some info about the artist on the reverse, a couple of sheets of paper that are perfect to use with the tools you received, a scrawlrbox sticker, a sweet treat and lastly, a bookmark sized card with a run down of what you received with an art prompt on the reverse.

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All of these goodies cost £15, including delivery. I’ve explained the packaging to you, and as the image shows, the art tools sent for March were chalk pastels. Usually the tools are pens and markers an such so no worries on those, but the packaging resulted in a lot of people receiving dusty and broken art supplies. Mine were dusty, but that’s no issue, I cleaned them up for the photograph and only one pastel was broken and still fine to use. No big deal, but others received boxes in a worse state. Thankfully, the company took this feedback on board, at least appear so. The box received since then was packaged in the same way, but it was products that would ensure just fine when mailed in such a way.

If you like the look of Scrawlrbox, you can sign up, or, alternatively, they even have the option to buy previous boxes if you missed out. I’ve found it a great way to top up my supplies and try new products!

Have you ever tried ScrawlrBox or another art subscription box? I’d love to hear what you think or if you have any recommendations for other affordable art boxes!