Materials & Equipment I use for my Small Business
Hello my lovely friends,
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I hope you are ok and feeling creative and willing to learn with me, because that’s what is all about here on my Blog.
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Today I want to share with you all the materials and equipment I use for my small business. You will find here all the necessary to create my illustrations, stickers, badges and art prints.
First of all, let’s start with the equipment.
iPad Pro 11” 2020:
I really recommend this iPad if you want to start in Digital Art, I know it can be quite pricey but worth it. It allows you to draw anywhere and combining with the software and the Apple Pencil, gives you so much freedom to draw, almost like in paper. I make almost all my sketches on the iPad because it feels so natural to draw.
I have used other tablets in the past which you have to connect to your computer and look at the computer screen instead on the tablet or use other software. On the iPad everything is built-in and ready to use.
You can chose other cheaper iPad that support Procreate as well if you can not afford the iPad Pro version.
One thing that I want to mention is the importance of getting a nice and good quality case. My mistake in the beginning was to get a cheap one and I have been regretting all this time.
So I want to recommend you the iPad case I have now…I am so happy with it! This case has 7 levels of inclination so it makes so easy to draw or watch a movie or search on the Internet and it is very steady.
The price of this iPad case is £30.99 and you can find it here.
Apple Pencil ( 2nd generation ):
This pencil is amazing!!! It is so precise and nice to handle almost like a real pencil…the only thing I recommend is to get a case for the pencil to have a better grip, because sometime it can be a little bit slippery.
You can find tons of pencil cases on Amazon. If you like one with a Kawaii look I recommend mine .
This is an amazing app, easy to learn how to use it and gives so much freedom to draw. It really feels like drawing in paper plus with all the advantages and tools that digital art offers.
The cost of this amazing app is only £9.99 and you just need to pay one time, all the updates are free 🙂
In future post I will make some Procreate tutorials for beginners and tips. Stay tuned!
The printer I use for printing all my illustrations and stickers is a Canon Pixma TS8351. I bought it online in Curry’s PC World for £159 and I am very happy with the quality. The ink can be a little bit pricey because uses 6 cartridges but the colours are so nice that makes worth the money.
I always use original ink, I don’t like to use the fake ones just in case decrease the quality of my prints. That’s something I don’t want to risk on.
The cut machine I use is the Cricut Explore Air 2. I have the Mint colour ( I love this colour!!! )Even I had to wait for it because was sold out at the moment!! The price was £260 not too expensive for what the machine does…I thought would be more expensive!
I bought mine in Hobby Craft online shop but you can buy it as well on Amazon and a lot of online crafts shops.
This machine is amazing, I was a little scare to use it at the beginning because I’ve never used a cut machine before so I didn’t know how to start.
First things I did is follow the little tutorial they provide you with videos and step by step….was pretty easy.
Later I started to watch tutorials on YouTube to found out how to make the stickers…..It was a disaster at the beginning lol….but with a lot of practice I finally got to manage all the settings right and I started to make them pretty well.
It is so easy to make them now…but well you need to do your research first and do your practise like almost everything new you want to learn, right?
Button Badge Machine
I bough a button badge machine recently and I was so excited to have this and introduce a new product for my shop.
The machine is very easy to assemble and use, the badges are so nice and quick to make. I just prepare the file in Procreate to make the rounded version of the illustration I want to make and I print and cut with the Cricut. Then you just have to press them. Check some of my Kawaii Badges I made with this machine.
I bought mine on Amazon and the price was very nice as well, I found a sale for £89, they usually sell them for £160 or even more.
Check here the Button Badge Machine
Here’s a list of tools I use to create my products:
- Cricut Cutting Matts: these are necessary to cut any material with your Cricut machine.
- Cricut Tools Set : I got this nice set of tools when I bought my cricut machine, these are the essential tools for creating your crafts. Includes five tools: scissors, tweezers, a scraper, a spatula and a weeder.
- Corner Rounder Punch: I use this little tool to round the corners of some of my A6 prints.
So until here we have all the equipment and the tools, right? ….but what about the materials???
Which sticker paper is the best to make stickers or which paper will I need print my art?
Those are all the question you are going to have when you are trying to built your online shop or Etsy shop, am I right?
You need that your products look amazing to give the Wow impression on your customers, isn’t?
Then you need quality products, as I have experienced….if is cheap usually is not good. I have tried several cheap papers and the colours came out awful…or too thin…..naaahhh..
Usually the materials are quite expensive but it will worth the money and your customers will be happier and probably they will buy from you again. Quality and Branding is the key of success ( Branding is another subject for a future post I have planned as well).
The sticker paper I used in the beginning was the Matte Sticker paper from Cricut but I don’t like Matte stickers….for me the real sticker is always with that glossy look!
So I tried the ”White Vinyl Sticker Paper from Evergreen Goods” also available on Amazon. The price is £8.99 for only 10 sheets is quite expensive but all this kind of quality products are more or less that expensive. This sticker paper was very nice, the colours were bright and I loved it! The only thing negative for me is that is very thin…I like thicker paper…it shows better quality in my humble opinion. But this only my opinion and it depends on everyone’s taste.
I’ve been researching other papers with reviews from other illustrators on their YouTube channels until I found the one I am using now that I love so much!
This sticker paper is thicker, the colours are super nice and the smell is….OMG I love the smell….it reminds me the smell of these inflatable beach toys. I love it!! LOL XD this is just me that I am weird!! XD
So going back to this amazing sticker paper…
The one I love is the “Sticker Paper Glossy Vinil A4 PPD-36 from PPD (Photo paper direct) available on Amazon. This one comes with 20 sheets and it cost around £17 .
Check here this Sticker Paper.
I did a lot of research as well with the paper for printing my art prints. I still looking always for better options to improve the quality of my goodies.
The paper I use to print my A6 art prints is the “Archival Matte Paper A4 from Epsom” available in Amazon.
With this paper I print the backing cards for my stickers as well but I really want to keep researching on another paper thicker than this one for this. So if anyone knows any please let me know…I can learn as well from you…(that’s is the aim of this blog to share and learn from each other)
For my 5×5” mini art prints I use the Canon Photo Paper Plus Glossy II. I buy this one on Amazon or in the Canon website, Sometime is sold out on Amazon. The Canon products are super nice, I am always very happy with the quality.
The paper I use for printing the badges is the Tintino Photo Glossy Paper 135g, a very nice quality paper with really great colours.
That’s all for now! I will update this post if any new material comes and I will share it here for you 😀
I hope you found this post useful and I look forward to reading your comments or questions.
Thanks for reading!! Have a nice day!
Stay safe my friends,