Calligraphy & Brush Lettering Materials In And Out Of Dubai

calligraphy pens brush and inks

Many of my readers have been asking for more posts about my calligraphy and brush lettering stash - a hobby that I do on weekends or whenever creativity knocks on my door. You might have seen my post last year but just to follow up as I have already collected items, I found a few cheaper options (yet again) where you can buy stuffs for word art in and out of Dubai.

I'm no expert, mind you, and I only do this for fun. Still a work in progress, all of my random doodles were posted on my Instagram and personal Facebook account.

Practice Pads

Calligraphy pads

When I started learning calligraphy and brush lettering, I used to work on graph pads which are A4 sizes just to make sure that the letters I write are of similar size with consistent slants and spacing. Graph pads with larger width are very convenient to use but as days go by, I felt the need to work on smaller pads and notebooks.

Good thing there are Daiso Stores in Dubai, this is where I got two of my calligraphy pads - graph (1) and dotted sheets (2).

calligraphy art materials

dotted notebook for calligraphy

Both of these pads are only AED 7 each. The only problem I guess is that neither of these calligraphy pads absorb low quality ink so better use India or Sumi drawing ink on them to avoid blotting.

Brush Lettering

brush lettering

The logo of my blog is a product of brush lettering, I learned this when I randomly used a thin paint brush with my India ink to write something. This has been my favourite type of word art ever since. The only problem is that it's really hard to find brush pens here in Dubai and you can only get them from certain stores. Here are the materials I normally use:

brush lettering tools

(3) Sumi Drawing Ink I got from Daiso for less than AED 20, (4) paint brush #10 from Carrefour for about AED 25/set (5) paint brush set from IKEA and (6) small water brush pen from Bookworld Kinokuniya for only AED 12. This water brush pen is the hardest thing to find because sometimes it's out of stock or it comes with a watercolour set, I forgot the brand name though, I chanced upon it last May and grabbed the last piece right away. This one's ideal for watercolour  brush lettering but I normally use it with black ink to get a faded gradient.

tin can pen holder

I keep my brushes and studs in a tin can (7) which I also bought from Daiso for only AED7, mainly to keep them in place.

inks for calligraphy

I used other inks for brush lettering: India inks black (8) and green (9) from Daler Rowney which I got from Bookworld Kinokuniya and Sennelier Burnt Sienna Br11 (10) I got from Van Beek Art Supplies in Amsterdam. This ink (10) is a traditional shellac based ink with a transparent satin finish.

Winter and Newton Watercolour

I'm still learning watercolour brush lettering and the cubes (11) that I use are from Winsor and Newton. I got mine from Amsterdam but you can also buy the similar cubes from the Artshop near Ductac at Mall of the Emirates.

Calligraphy Materials in Amsterdam

Van Beek Art Supplies

When I went to Amsterdam previously, I never let the chance pass without visiting an art shop before I flew back to Dubai. The city is full of arts and is a home to many of the most famed artists all over the world so finding where to actually buy art materials is very easy.

All  above photos are the ones I got from Van Beek Art Supplies located near Heineken Experience:  Sennelier Burnt Sienna Br11 (10) , different types of nibs (12) at 2 to 8 EUR each, wooden studs/nib holders (13) , flat water brush pen (14), and brown colour brush pen (15) from Pentel. I can't remember how much each product costs but I remembered spending 56 EUR for all art supplies that I have purchased during my trip.

brown and black studs/penholders

As of the moment I have 4 nib holders from my collections, never got the chance to own an oblique one (and I'm dying to own one T_T). The other nib holders I got were all bought from  Bookworld Kinokuniya (16) cost AED 24 , (17) from the set of Daler Rowney I purchased last year and (18) is only AED12. They are also selling a few other calligraphy pens that I find overly priced (range from 200 up to 800 AED per set) that experts and enthusiasts buy because of their make and model.

nibs and nib holders for calligraphy

Of course these nib holders should always come with your choice of nibs. I have 22 in total, 2 of my favourites were bought again from Amsterdam,

decorative calligraphy nibs

(19) was from the set I purchased from Daler and Rowney, (12) 5 nibs from Van Beek Art Supplies, (20) 2 nib types both bought from Bookworld Kinokuniya stationary section, and (21) the set I received from a friend that I think she got from Day-to-day store.

gold and silver calligraphy inks

And finally, aside from the inks I have mentioned above, I also used specialty inks for dark coloured papers. I use silver (22) , white (23), and gold (24) Winsor and Newton  inks I purchased from the Artshop near Ductac.

To summarise where I got all of them, here are the places you need to visit:

  • Bookworld Kinokuniya - Stationary section The Dubai Mall, Down Town Burj Khalifa
  • The Art Shop - DUCTAC (Mall Of The Emirates) 
  • Daiso - Ibn Battuta Mall or Dubai Mall
  • Day-to-day - near Deira City Centre
  • Van Beek Art Supplies - in Amsterdam, near Heineken Experience 

I hope this helped at all!

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This is not a sponsored post in any way. Opinion and photos are solely my own.


  1. I really love your photos Joy - very creative and classy!

  2. Hi Joy! :)) im also in dubai. Im new here and ive been looking for water brush and nib pens. This is so helpful. Thank you so much for this.

  3. This was really helpful because i live in UAE as a filipino student and that i wanted to improve my calligraphy skills . -Thank You :)

  4. Thanks joy! This was really helpful. I was searching for the brush pen literelly everywhere.Thanks a lot!!!

  5. Where can I find a dotted journal in Dubai