I’m always on the hunt for inexpensive craft supplies, even when I don’t have a project planned. In my experience, I can usually come up with something to create with the odds and ends I’ve collected. For instance, I recently bought some nice snowflake scrapbooking stickers that were marked down from $4.99 to $1 that I know I’ll use eventually.
We entertain a lot, and that can eat up a lot of our spending money if I don’t plan well. So, if I see something on clearance or discounted somewhere, I’ll grab it for later. I shop discount websites too, and recently stumbled across a couple more I can’t wait to try! Here are some of the places I find my best deals:
Craft & Fabric Stores
Michael’s, JoAnne Fabrics and Hobby Lobby. Michaels is my favorite of these three because of proximity and price. There is a store just a mile from my house, and it’s easy for me to spend hours there coming up with ideas. They usually have at least an aisle of clearance merchandise, and if I’m willing to spend some time digging through the disorganized mess I can often find some great discounts. They also sometimes have a final sale table set up at the front of the store with damaged goods that are easily repaired and steeply reduced. They recently discontinued their loyalty card (boo!), but they have a new smart phone app that provides discounts without having to clip coupons. And their weekly ad has coupons that have saved me a lot of money in the past, especially on frames and shadow boxes. A couple times a year they have a 50% sale on those items, with an additional 20-30% coupon that can be used together with the sale. I wait for these sale & coupon combos to stock up when I want matching frames. I love the size of JoAnne’s and their fabric section is amazing. I can usually find coupons and discounts for them also, but they are slightly more expensive than Michael’s for craft supplies so I usually go to Joanne’s for fabric and remnants or novelty items (their stuff IS really cute!) Hobby Lobby taunts me daily because it is so close to my work! I’ve been known to spend my lunch hour wandering around and gawking at all the pretty things they have. They can be pricey, but their after-holiday sales are serious money-savers, they have weekly sales that are anywhere from 30-50% off entire departments, and they accept their online % off coupon from my smart phone. I could seriously decorate my whole house from this store — they have such a variety of furniture, accessories and project supplies!
Oriental Trading Company, Luna Bazaar, eBay, Etsy, Save-On-Crafts, and FactoryDirectCrafts. What can I say about these places that you don’t already know? I order from Oriental Trading at least a couple times a year, especially for our annual pumpkin party. I get almost all of the kids goodie bag stuffers and party favors from them, and they have a decent assortment of bulk crafts and decorations. Luna Bazaar has awesome lighting options that aren’t outrageously expensive. We ordered all of our paper lanterns from them last year and they held up so nice we’ll be able to use them again and again. You know ebay and etsy have unique finds that can be shockingly low-priced. The last two sites I listed are new to me and I have only spent time just perusing their inventory (and planning my attack!). I’m looking forward to ordering tree slices, wheat stalks, apothocary jars, bird nests, glow bracelets and discounted craft supplies from them both soon.
Resale & Other
Thrift stores, yard sales, flea markets, hardware stores, dollar stores, antique shops, auto parts stores, garden centers, junk yards. The list could go on, but you get the point. Bits and pieces can be found everywhere, especially if you keep an open mind. Here are the things I keep an eye out for: picture frames, ribbon scraps, old vases, linens, wood, inexpensive containers, nuts & bolts, pottery and interestingly shaped metal parts. But you never know what could catch my eye! An artist’s wheels are always spinning, right?
So that’s the short list of my favorite go-to spots for craft supplies. Are there any off-the-wall places you check out to stock your craft closet? Please, do share!!!