In which Brianna reviews her daughter's art easel. No affiliate links this time, but we thank you for your support all the same. Enjoy!
Crayola Magnetic-Double Sided Artist Easel
Monkey loves to draw. She will attempt to draw with any implement she can get her hands on. And she will do this drawing on the first flat surface she comes across. Far too often the first surface she finds is a wall. We rent right now, and for some reason the places we rent come painted with entirely flat paint. This is not a semi-gloss, or a wipeable matte. No, flat and absorbent is what we’re working with. Nothing washes off these walls. Just, nothing. So we were pretty thrilled when Monkey was gifted a Crayola easel this past Christmas.
The Magnetic Double Sided Artist Easel by Crayola has a beautiful teal frame. So many kids’ easels come in garish shades of primary colors, but everyone in our family enjoys this bright blue shade, so that’s pretty neat. One side of the easel is a white dry-erase board, and the other is a black chalkboard. Both sides have a yellow clip at the top, for holding a paper in place for other art endeavors. The way the legs are positioned, you can only use one side at a time. Setup of the easel was fairly simple, but I don’t think we could say it was easy. It took some force to snap all the pieces in place to construct the base. There were no screws, pegs, tacks, Allen wrenches or other hardware involved, though, so that is definitely a big plus!
The triangular shape of the easel, with legs that extend across the floor and angle toward each other, makes the lightweight plastic surprisingly stable. Monkey can pick the easel up and move it around quite easily on her own, but it doesn’t fall over every time the dog runs by. Popping the base open to flip from one side to the other takes a little effort, but is certainly manageable for any moderately healthy adult. I love that if I need to put the easel away for a while, or certainly when we move, I can simply fold it up. Monkey enjoys coloring on both the dry-erase and the chalkboard surfaces. The easel comes with an eraser, but no markers of chalk. Of course, Crayola makes very fine examples of both products; you'll just have to buy them separately.
You think I’m about to give this easel five eggs. You are wrong. There is one fault to this easel that drives me up my chalk-covered walls. The trays that are meant to hold Monkey’s markers and chalk will not stay on! She can easily pull them off the easel with her tiny little hands. And she does! But then she wonders where to put her markers. Another strange thing, still about the trays, though, is that there are three. The dry erase side gets a tray that stretches the width of the board, but the chalkboard side gets two separate mini trays. This is completely mystifying to me. I’m constantly tripping over all three of these trays, and it’s so annoying that I’m inclined to only give this easel three eggs. But then I remember all the nice things about it, and I guess we’ll settle in at a negotiated four eggs.
When I tried to find a place to buy this easel for those readers who might be interested, I came up empty. We only received it at Christmas, and I know it was purchased right around the holidays (as opposed to months in advance), so it wasn’t purchased long ago. And yet it’s already out of Crayola’s catalog. Eventually I found that Toys R Us still has them in stock, so you’ll have to go there if you want this exact easel (edit: they're out now, too). Crayola has other easels for sale, but their design is different enough that I don’t feel I can speak to them just yet.
Ariel and Brianna are friends who met while working in a library. Now they collaborate to develop life-enhancing book club experiences.
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