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The best art easels in 2019

best art easels
(Image credit: Burst on Pexels)

Once you've found the best art easel for you, you'll probably spend hours at it, so it’s very important to invest in one that will suit your needs and be comfortable. There are several things to bear in mind when deciding what type to buy, as an art easel is one of the most important art supplies in your toolbox (see our guide to more essential art supplies). 

Space could be a consideration – you may need to be able to pack away your setup at the end of each session, meaning you'll be looking for a foldaway or lightweight small easel you can carry with you. Or, you might be looking for a more solid studio easel that will be a more permanent fixture in your space, and last you a lifetime. Or perhaps you're looking for an art easel for the child or small person in your life. 

A quality art easel can be a fairly considerable investment so it’s worth taking some time to think about your needs before you begin. This guide will help you navigate some of the options available to fledgling artists and help you find the best art easel for you. And never fear if your budget isn't massive, as we've got the best art easels for a range of price points.

Looking for more art supplies? Also check our post on the best pencils and the best sketchbooks. It's also worth keeping an eye on the best Black Friday deals.

art easel: Basic Studio Easel Mabef M/09

(Image credit: Mabef)

01. Basic Studio Easel Mabef M/09

A top-quality Italian build, the best art easel overall is designed to last

Materials: Beech wood and metal fixings | Colour: Oiled beech wood | Max canvas height: 46-inch | Product size: 67-inch to 93-inch | Weight: 10.5kg | Transportable: Yes, around studio

Great attention to detail
Designed to last
Not cheap
Not lightweight

Mabef easels are designed for quality and longevity. I have personally owned a number of Mabef designs for over 25 years and they’re all still going strong. Made from stain-resistant oiled beech wood, the finishing on these Basic Studio Easel Mabef easels is beautiful and well worth the investment. The M/09 model is a great starting point for the serious studio artist on a budget. Although it doesn’t have some of the frills of other models, the M/09 is a solid model that will stand the test of time and will prove a good studio work-horse for the burgeoning professional studio.

art easel: Heavy Duty Large H-frame Studio Easel

(Image credit: Atworth)

02. Heavy Duty Large H-frame Studio Easel

The best art easel on Amazon is a great addition to mixed media studio

Material: Wood, heavy-duty casters and metal fixings | Colour: Natural wood | Max canvas size: 90-inch | Product size: 222cm (87.40-inch/7.28ft | Weight: 17.4 Kg | Transportable: Yes, around studio

This heavy duty studio easels a great mid-point for a lot of artists’ needs. It’s not from a big name but the overall functionality certainly makes up any difference. An Atworth H-frame easel will give you a more stable easel to work on, and, although it’s not collapsable, the wheels make it easy to move around the studio as needed. You can also convert it into a horizontal easel, which gives you a wealth of options when it comes to your medium, too. Convertible easels are perfect for watercolour painting or just as extra table space.

art easel: Mini Easel

(Image credit: Juvale)

03. Mini Easel

The best tabletop art easel is adjustable and collapsible

Material: Wood with metal fixings | Colour: Oiled wood | Max canvas size: 16.2-inch | Product size: 8.25 x 18.7 x 9.3cm | Weight: 1.2 lbs | Transportable: Yes

Adjustable canvas position
Stores away flat
Cheaper easels are available
No storage

Some table easels come as a box with ample storage to save space, which can seems like a good option at first. The stumbling block of these designs is their lack of adjustability. If you’re working at a table then you need to be able to adjust the baseline of your canvas, that’s to say, how high the bottom of your canvas is from the table. That's where this Mini Easel really comes into its own. The adjustability of this easel enables you to work at your own height, which will save you a lot of discomfort in the long run.

art easel: Melissa & Doug Deluxe Wooden Standing Art Easel

(Image credit: Melissa & Doug)

04. Melissa & Doug Deluxe Wooden Standing Art Easel

The best art easel for children is a quality piece of kit

Material: Wooden frame with plastic fixings and trays | Colour: Mixed | Max canvas size: N/A | Product size: 11.9 x 6.9 x 6.6 cm | Weight: 9.53kg | Transportable: Yes

Loads of versatility
Specifically built for kids
Not cheap
Doesn't include materials

When it comes to your child’s creativity you don’t want to instal limitations so versatility is the key word. Melissa & Doug have built themselves a name as one of the top suppliers of kids' creative kit over the past 30 years so they must be doing something right. This multi-use easel by Melissa & Doug is easy to assemble, folds away easily for storage and includes a dry-erase board, chalkboard, locking paper-roll holder, child-safe paper cutter, four easy-clip grips and two large plastic trays that can be removed for easy cleaning. Hours of messy fun guaranteed.

art easel: Melissa & Doug Deluxe Double-Sided Tabletop Easel

(Image credit: Melissa & Doug)

05. Melissa & Doug Deluxe Double-Sided Tabletop Easel

The best art easel for younger children is bags of fun

Material: Wood and plastic | Colour: Mixed | Max canvas size: N/A | Product size: 8.9 x 47.8 x 57.2cm | Weight: 2kg | Transportable: Yes

Easily convertible
Everything close to hand
Lots of plastic
No materials included

Younger children won’t stand for long at an easel, and will often be tempted to push their easel over, so a table easel can be a better option, and table easels can also be set up on the floor to make them even more accessible. A table-top easel from a trusted name like Melissa & Doug such as this double-sided tabletop easel is a great option for those younger Picassos. Its built-in paper roll, reversible design and sturdy wooden construction make this a great option that’s designed to inspire hours of fun.

art easel:

(Image credit: Daler Rowney)

06. Daler Rowney 111 Piece All Media Art Studio Paint Set

Conquer a multitude of mediums with the best art set with an easel

Material: Aluminium easel, fabric carry case and mixed art supplies **Colour:** Mixed **Max canvas size:** Not specified | Product size: 111 x 96 x 96cm | Transportable: Yes

Wide choice of mediums
Affordable set
Lower quality materials

If you’re looking to kit yourself or someone else out with a full artistic kit including an easel then the 111 Piece All Media Art Studio Paint Set from Daler Rowney could be a good place to start. Now, most of this kit is student grade or below, but it’s enough to get most people started off with a host of mediums and is a good place to build upon. The kit includes one aluminium easel, one carrying case, one eraser, one pencil pouch, a stretched canvas, mixing palette, pencil sharpener, one set of travel watercolours, colouring pencils, oil pastels, acrylics, brushes and much more. 

art easel:

(Image credit: Zimtown)

07. Ktaxon 5' Tripod Easel Stand with Drawer

The best art easel at Walmart looks good even when not in use

Material: Beech wood with metal fixings | Colour: Burlywood | Max canvas size: 36.22-inch / 92cm | Product size: 59 x 17 x 14-inch | Weight: 7kg | Transportable: Around studio

Holds a large canvas
Handy storage in base
No wheels
Takes up space

This  Ktaxon Tripod Easel Stand with drawer is made of high quality beech. If you’re tight for space, or just don’t want your paint left out for little fingers or paws, then the addition of the drawer at the base of this easel is a huge plus. This adjustable easel makes a handsome addition to your home or studio and is also a great way to display your work to visiting friends and family when not in use. If you’re looking for an easel for part-time use at home, this is a great choice.

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