top 5 affordable watercolors for beginners

Top 5 Affordable Watercolors for Beginners

Watercolors are one of my absolute favorite ways to add color and decoration to my journal pages in my traveler’s notebooks. I often see people ask what are the best watercolors for travelers notebook inserts. Watercolors are a wonderful medium to play with but if you are just beginning you might think that the cheap $4 ones from Michaels are ok and I am here to tell you they are not! The thing is that you need to have a quality paper to make your watercolors look fantastic and you don’t want watercolors that are going to leave a chalky, yucky feeling to your journal pages.

I recommend four different types of notebooks for journaling and using watercolors. These notebooks are

All of these notebooks can be found in the shop by clicking HERE. We can talk more about notebooks and paper in another post though because today is all about the 5 best affordable watercolors for beginners.

#1 Jane Davenport Brights Palette – now I recommend this one the most just because if you have a local Michaels store and you want to get started right now then this palette is going to be the easiest palette to find in the store. The palette may seem pricey but when you use a Michaels coupon it is a really great price. You can also find this product on Amazon by clicking HERE.

Rock Your Notebook watercolor tips

#2 Kuretake Gansai Tambai – these watercolors are my absolute favorite ones especially for beginners. You get a great palette and colors that you don’t normally see in watercolor palettes at this price range. The best thing about these watercolors is how highly pigmented they are and how long they last. I recently found a 48 pan set of these Amazon and if you can wait a few days to get this set then I would definitely get this set over the Jane Davenport watercolors. You can find the 48 pans set on Amazon by clicking HERE.

Rock Your Notebook watercolor tips

#3 Winsor & Newton Travel Set – Winsor & Newton makes stunning watercolors that are just creamy and vibrant and so fun to play with. They have lovely movement to them when you are working with them and vibrant colors. I don’t recommend this set often but only because the set comes with 14 colors. If you aren’t afraid to do some color mixing though and really just play with some watercolors then this is a great set to get. You can find these watercolors on Amazon by clicking HERE and I have seen them at some Michaels.

#4 Daniel Smith Introductory Set – now I know what you are going to think when you see this set that I am recommending as it is not cheap coming in at $20 for 6 tubes of watercolors but I have to tell you all that Daniel Smith Watercolors are my absolute favorite. You only get 6 colors in this set but just like the Winsor and Newton set if your willing to play with your watercolors and do some mixing then you can get a ton of different colors with just these 6 colors. The movement that comes with Daniel Smith Watercolors is absolutely amazing and one that you will enjoy just watching and playing with. You can find this set on Amazon by clicking HERE and I have also seen it in a few Michaels so if you can grab it with a coupon even better.

#5 Prima Watercolors The Classic Set – these watercolors are a lot like the Jane Davenport colors. They both come in wonderful tins and they both have beautiful vibrant colors. Prima has many different sets of watercolors but I recommend that if you are a beginner the Classic Set is the set to grab because you can mix your own colors with this wonderful palette. You can find the Prima watercolors over at or by clicking HERE. I have occasionally seen them in Hobby Lobby but they aren’t always there.

#6 Coliro Watercolors – I speak of these as a bonus set because they are not needed but they should definitely be a want. These watercolors are so vibrant and when it comes to gold watercolors it is hard to find metallic colors that are as vibrant as these ones are. They are pricey but they do last a long time and are well worth the price. You can find them on Amazon by clicking HERE.

Rock Your Notebook watercolor tips

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