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Best of Toronto

The Best Art Supply Stores in Toronto

Posted by Natalia Manzocco / February 19, 2014

art supply stores torontoThe best art supply stores in Toronto will have whatever you need to get your next project from your brain to the page. The city's cheapest and best-stocked options are mostly clustered around OCAD, kept on their toes by one another's presence (and throngs of art school students ready to burn through gallons of paint).

Still there are plenty of decent options spread across town. Some go way past supplies, offering art classes so you can learn how to use those new goodies and framing services for the finished product.

Here are the best art supply stores in Toronto.

See also:

The 10 places to buy affordable art in Toronto
The top 7 artist collectives in Toronto
The best DIY spots in Toronto
Where to rent studio space in Toronto
The best custom and picture framing stores in Toronto
The best card, paper and stationery shops in Toronto

Curry's

Curry's

Curry's scores big on convenience - there are locations scattered around the downtown core, including one across from OCAD, one at Yonge and College, and a massive one at Queen and Beaconsfield where Woolfitt's once stood. The chain claims to stock over 200,000 products, so they'll likely have whatever you need. More »

Above Ground Art Supplies

Above Ground Art Supplies

Located just south of OCAD, the original Above Ground tends to cater mostly to the needs of the art-school student body. Additional locations have since brought the same huge selection (and tightly-packed atmosphere) to the Junction and the Beaches. Service is friendly and helpful, and if an item's out of stock at one store they can ship it in from another for you. More »

Gwartzman's

Gwartzman's

This College and Spadina institution may be a little rougher around the edges than some of its competitors, but the lack of frills at the mom-and-pop shop often translates into major savings, especially for large canvases. You may need a hand finding what you're looking for, but the staff are happy to lend a hand. More »

Articulations

Articulations

This Junction art store aims to be a community hub for creative minds, with rotating exhibitions by local artists in a standalone gallery space and art classes for youth and adults in their studio. The selection isn't as comprehensive as some, but the founders say they chose to keep things limited, with a focus on Canadian-made and eco-friendly supplies. More »

DeSerres

DeSerres

This Canadian chain has four locations scattered around Toronto. They pride themselves on having a vast selection (including craft supplies and other less-traditional items), though prices are middle-of-the-road. As a bonus they also offer custom framing. More »

Midoco

Midoco

Midoco sets itself apart through its store locations, eschewing competitive areas like OCAD for the Beach and the Annex. They see themselves as a one-stop shop for creative types, with a stronger focus on novelty gifts, office supplies (both quirky and straight-up) and other lifestyle items. More »

Toose

Toose

Toose caters mostly to U of T students. It's located just across from the university bookstore on College. But though the selection is small, they don't rest on their laurels. Toose carries some unusual brands and painters and architects have raved about the quality of their drafting materials, paints, and brushes. More »

Homebase

Homebase

This store is a (sorry in advance) home base for lovers of graffiti art and culture. The bulk of the stock is made up of cans of Montana spray paint (the owner's personal fave) in a massive rainbow of colours. There's also Kobra paint and graffiti markers. More »

Studio Six

Studio Six

Located far from downtown's glut of art supply stores, Markham's Studio Six offers a little bit of everything - supplies, painting classes, and even custom framing. The selection isn't huge compared to some of the downtown chains, but if you're in the neighbourhood, there's no better place. More »

Discussion

12 Comments

gary / February 19, 2014 at 12:11 pm
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Toronto needs more art supply stores. Many times I have looked for items and have not found them at any of the downtown stores. I think we need more stores with much more product. (and reasonable prices!)
Mike / February 19, 2014 at 01:40 pm
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Great list but missing one of my faves: Woolfitt’s
Rizzy replying to a comment from Mike / February 19, 2014 at 01:44 pm
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woolfitt's is now curries.
Lila replying to a comment from Mike / February 20, 2014 at 10:43 pm
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Woolfitt's was expensive as hell. They jacked up everything at least 60% more. There was a time copic marker was $7 while curry's was $3.49. Their portfolio selection is nice since they have leather and other styles. Yes they sell high quality supplies, but there was a large selection of regular items that I could find at Curry's for half the price. I remember a Liquidex arclyic paint, same colour and number, Woolfitt's $11.99, Curry's $7.99. Ridic. So glad they're gone.
Stephany / March 28, 2014 at 10:04 am
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With the state of the economy today and more
people getting laid off from cutbacks and natural disaster damage many folks
are turning to self employment. Reducing costs always begins with being more efficient stock market report with your
budget at hand. Local independent stores usually offer the lowest prices.
SteveJohn / May 20, 2014 at 01:52 pm
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I NEED A SUPPLER THAT WILL TAKE A CHECK I HAVE A GRANT FOR $1000 ILL NEED A QUOATE
Ray replying to a comment from SteveJohn / May 20, 2014 at 02:10 pm
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Well start calling them up or visiting then SteveJohn and explain your your situation to them.
Adam replying to a comment from SteveJohn / May 22, 2014 at 02:26 pm
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@SteveJohn Curry's would be happy to discuss how we can work with you. Just drop a note to customer service: https://www.currys.com/generic.htm?ECINFO=CUSTOMERSERVICE
Thanks!
Adam replying to a comment from SteveJohn / May 22, 2014 at 02:28 pm
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@SteveJohn Curry's would be happy to discuss how we can work with you. Just drop a note to customer service: https://www.currys.com/generic.htm?ECINFO=CUSTOMERSERVICE
Thanks!
annie / June 28, 2014 at 10:49 am
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Aboveground has the best selection than Curry's (almost comparable to Blick in the U.S.) but it's very hard to roam around their location next to OCAD. It's so tight and claustrophobic.
Adam replying to a comment from annie / July 2, 2014 at 12:37 pm
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Hey Annie! We invite you to check out and compare Curry's Queen West store (across from the Drake Hotel). This location has an expanded product offering, far more than any of our other locations and has space to breathe too while you browse! :)
Roberto / July 22, 2014 at 06:06 pm
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Somebody could tell me where I can find Royal Langnickel Brushes?

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