Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Get the Good Stuff!

The Dixon Ticonderoga Company is promoting their quality school and art supplies this back-to-school season by asking art teacher bloggers to put their products to the test. I was happy to welcome these donations into our classroom and will share with you what we have found, now that we have had the joy of opening, unpacking, and sampling a box of free art supplies. 
First off, everyone knows that the Ticonderoga pencil is about as high quality as you can get. They arrived pre-sharpened, a deal breaker for me if they are not, and have a latex-free eraser that withstands some serious use. The competitor pencil erasers wouldn't have lasted a day in my room.

The Prang watercolors are removable from the case, which is great for painting with a selected color scheme, and the brush is well made. The colors are nice and bold, and my professional artist friend Sherry says they are her favorite travel watercolor set, and her studio mates agree. Prang's box seems a little sturdier than the competitor set as well.

This is my first time trying out the Prang markers and I was a bit skeptical after only using a competing brand for many years, but you can see here in the comparison photo that the ink coverage is very smooth and vibrant. I like that the tops are all white, which can make cleanup go a little quicker, and the only thing I can say I missed while using the Prang markers is that the tip shape doesn't really allow for thick line coverage, but there is a slight thickness difference from tip to angle.

The colored pencils were quite impressive, even before unpacking them. They had a nice weight, a triangular form for staying in place on the table, and a sharpener is included. The thick lead puts down smooth, saturated color and they don't feel fragile, like the competitor pencil. They seem as though they would last a long time.

I will continue to review these products as we begin our lessons this year, and share results on how they are holding up. I wanted to go ahead and post what I've found so far during the back-to-school campaign, and so far I am impressed with what I've seen from all four of these products. Thanks Dixon for sharing your products with my class!


  1. I I have been reading lots of post reviewing the PRANG supplies, I am impressed with what I see with the markers, I have never used them and now I certainly would give them a try! I only use the PRANG water colors and have always loved them. Up until a few years ago I was 100% DIXON Ticonderoga Pencil girl, I have seen the quality go down and down. Last year, I completely GAVE UP on them. The wood is soft, and they just do not last as long as they used to. I invested in some (expensive) Faber-Castell drawing pencils and although admittedly expensive, the lasted from FEBRUARY to THE END OF THE YEAR, so in my head....they are TOTALLY worth it! Here is a link:

  2. I am interested in trying the markers also. I have to agree with Susan about the pencils. I always thought the Ticonderoga pencils were the best, but they started breaking on me, and I was having trouble getting them to sharpen nicely. Instead of spending my budget on pencils I have been just using the cheapy ones the school provides.


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