If you’re just getting started in paper crafting, you’ll need some supplies. If you’re not sure which basic supplies you need, be sure to read my 10 Basic Supplies to Start Paper Crafting article. If you’ve already got the basics covered, then it’s time to branch out into the fun stuff! Now you just need to know where to buy paper craft supplies, right?
These days most stores, from your local drug store to the big department chains, offer at least a sprinkling of paper craft supplies. But if you’re looking for specific brands or items, or if you want to browse through a wide selection of the latest products available, you will benefit greatly from shopping online. Everything you can imagine for paper crafting, from printable papers to electronics that do most of the grunt work for you, can be purchased online! There is not only a wide variety of places to shop, but a lot of different kinds of stores to choose from. Below is a list that I’ve compiled for you of some of the best places to buy paper craft supplies. I’ve also organized them by type so that you can choose the shopping experience that best fits your style and budget.
Big Box Stores
A few of the “big box” stores offer paper craft supplies. Because they are able to stock in high volumes, they tend to get better deals from the manufacturers than smaller stores, and will usually pass some of these savings on to you.
TIP: Check these stores for great deals on the pricier paper crafting tools such as dies and printing/cutting machines. They often offer these items as “loss leaders” to get you shopping at their sites, especially around the holidays.
Chain Craft Stores
Chain craft stores offer a wider variety of paper crafting supplies than the “big box” stores, because they are more “in-the-know” about what paper crafters want and need. Typically you can find a decent selection of each of the biggest industry brands here, and the prices will be reasonable. These stores also often offer free shipping for orders over a certain size, which can add up to big savings if you order a lot.
TIP: Coupons that can be used at your local version of these stores can usually be used online as well. Check your coupon for an online coupon code, and be sure to apply the code to your cart before completing your order to save yourself some money! Don’t get their coupons? Subscribe to their newsletter, and they will happily fill your inbox!
Paper Craft Specialty Stores
**These shops offer, by far, the widest variety of paper crafting supplies.** I guarantee that you will feel like a kid in a candy store shopping here! Prices at these stores will generally not be as low as at the “big box” or chain craft stores. However, because each is run by either a single owner/operator or a small team of individuals, you will usually get terrific customer service. That alone may be worth paying an extra dollar or two!
TIP: Many of these shops offer Wishlist services. Create an account and then log in to keep track of the items you’re saving up for or would love to get as gifts!
Direct Sales Consultants
Some of the major paper craft supply companies only offer their products for sale through direct sales consultants. Direct sales consultants — like me! — are the ‘Avon ladies’ of the paper craft world. We provide you with product catalogues (online for free, paper copies for a small fee) out of which you can order, as well as personalized service. Although we love the opportunity to teach you new skills through home workshops, these days we also have our own websites where you can shop online.
By shopping through a direct sales consultant, you’ll not only get personalized customer service, but also direct access to an expert crafter to answer all your product questions. Another really awesome benefit of direct sales shopping is the ability to earn Hostess Rewards when you host a workshop. Who doesn’t love free stuff?
Online Art Stores
Paper crafting is definitely art! Many of the same supplies that student and professional artists use are fun and helpful to use in paper crafts. Online art stores typically offer everything that brick and mortar stores offer, and often at huge discounts, too!
Online marketplaces are “shopping mall” type sites where artisans and entrepreneurs come together to sell their products. You will find few “mainstream” paper craft products here, but you will find an incredible variety of unique ones. Products offered range from raw materials, like ribbon/lace/charms, to handmade embellishments and printable art. Orders and payments are made through the main website, but customer service and shipping, where applicable, is handled by the individual sellers.
Many individual artists and makers of stamps, papers, digital stamps, and craft dies sell their products online through independently-owned-and-operated shops. These are far too numerous to list here, but you can find them by searching with keywords on Google (e.g. “digital stamps”) or by visiting some of the paper crafting communities listed on our Community page and asking around. Paper craft challenge blogs, which you can find via our Challenge Yourself page, are also good places to find links to these artisans, as they often sponsor paper craft challenges to promote their shops.