SketchBox Subscription Box Review + Coupon – September 2020
SketchBox is a monthly subscription box for art supplies. Each month, they’ll send you 4-9 art supplies (often full kits) plus a piece of art to inspire you. The items included are for 2D media, such as pens, markers, pencils, paints, etc.
SketchBox runs an ongoing contest to put a subscriber’s artwork on the lid of their box each month. There’s information on how to enter their monthly contest on the info card!
This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
This is a review of the $35/month Premium box. SketchBox also offers a $25/month Basic box.
The Subscription Box: SketchBox
The Cost: $35 + $5 US shipping. Save with longer subscriptions.
COUPON: Use code SKETCH5 to save $5 off your first box!
The Products: A selection of hand-picked art supplies, plus an art print to inspire
Ships to: The US for $5, Canada for $10, International for $15
My SketchBox September 2020 Review
Before we jump in, I have to mention that this box was my choice for MSA Team’s 2020 Resolution Subscription Box round-up! Is this the only resolution I have kept so far? I will never tell.
Their info card includes a list of the products and why they were chosen for the box. There is also a link to SketchBox School, a video they release each month showing you how to use your items and demonstrations, too! If you are new to art, these are really great, and even if you aren’t, they are filled with helpful knowledge and smart tidbits.
You also get a card with a drawing by this month’s featured artist, Jade Henning-Cantrell, plus information about her.
There was also a super cute SketchBox box sticker. This month, it has legs!
Faber- Castell 9000 6-Set Drawing Pencils – Retail Value $13.30
Pencils are classic for a reason! Though I don’t work in them super often, I do like to have a nice selection on hand for the live model sessions I have been partaking in over Zoom since my normal classes were canceled back in April. I usually take charcoal to those in-person classes but pencils are a nice substitute for a smaller scale session at my desk. This set has 6 different hardnesses to choose from which give a lot of versatility to your practice.
Here they are lined up from hardest to softest!
Kuretake ZIG Oblique Calligraphy Pen 1.0 Sepia – Listed Value $2.50
This pen has a really unique angled tip that makes it ideal for calligraphy. I am not a calligrapher but I think this tip is also really perfect for expressive line marks and textures. I like that it was included in a brown shade instead of black too.
You can see the versatility of the tip shape here.
Uni Emott Pens in ‘Saxe Blue’, ‘Beige’, and ‘Turquoise’ – Retail Value $6.87 ($2.29 each)
I am amassing quite a collection of these Emott pens but I like them so much I don’t really mind! This set includes a blue, turquoise, and natural tan-beige color. The tips are rigid enough for a consistent line, but feel flexible enough to let you feel the paper. The smaller nib is ideal for detail work in sketches or for just everyday desk writing if you want to add a little color.
Beige, Saxe Blue, and Turquoise.
Derwent Kneadable Artist Eraser in a Box – Retail Value $3.75
Nothing reminds me more of college more than a kneadable eraser! I went through so many of these in my studio classes. They are ideal for cleaning up pencil sketches as well as graphite and charcoal. This eraser arrived with a protective case to keep it clean when you aren’t dirtying it up on purpose!
Copic Multiliner Pen 0.05 mm in ‘Wine’ – Listed Value $3.80
The tip on this pen is SO SMALL! I gravitate towards bold pens but something about how tiny and delicate this one was and the unique color made me really excited to use it right away. This ink is waterproof and permanent, meaning it is ideal for layering under watercolors too!
This is one tiny tip!
SketchBox Signature Art Supply Case – Retail Value $9.99
While I don’t always love swag in subscription boxes, this pen case is an exception. It is perfect for traveling with my fave pens, marker, pencils, and brushes! I usually just dump them into a ziplock or beauty bag that they might fit into, but the structured sides of this case offer a lot more protection. The zipper design is cool too because it is longer to form a snap loop!
Custom Size 4 x 6 Borden & Riley Boris Layout Paper for Markers – Listed Value $7.95
I didn’t love this paper because it reminded me so much of tracing paper. I end up transferring so much of my work to digital files and a sheer paper is just not ideal for that sort of thing. I do think I might just use this for tracing paper though because one of the pros here is that markers don’t bleed on this paper at all!
I have been experiencing a little bit of a creative block this month (the worst!) and picking up a pen has been a struggle. I decided to try out these pens for some super easy sketches of two of my pets while I was crashed on the couch one night.
I think Birdie turned out pretty well!
The pens this month made small detail work like fur a breeze.
I also did a quick (and much more comical) sketch of Charlie.
The Verdict: I found this month’s SketchBox a challenge because I am just not feeling at peak creativity over the last few weeks. This is 100% a ‘me’ issue though, and the box was still really great. Sketchbox always sends high-quality items and I have to admit I even loved the branded case! I really loved the pencil kit and I am always thrilled with pens, especially thoughtfully selected ones as was the case this month.
To Wrap Up:
Can you still get this box if you sign up today? No. Order by October 20 @ 5pm PST for the November box! Also, SketchBox is currently fully operational during COVID-19.
COUPON: Use code SKETCH5 to save $5 off your first box!
Value Breakdown: Since this box costs $40 after shipping, each of the 7 items has an average cost of $5.71.
Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!
What do you think of SketchBox?