My favorite supplies for rock painting

After eight years of Word Rocks Project, I always get emails asking:  How do I get started painting rocks? Or What are the best supplies?

Here is another guide of some good supplies!

Markers and pens

I always struggle to write words with paint so markers became my best friends when painting rocks. I've tried a lot of them and these are some of my favorite. 

Poscas Pens are so far my favorite. Paint comes out easily, tips are resistant and perfect for details. They are a good option for a smooth, paint-like effect. Depending on your style you can choose fine or extra-fine point.

For creating a black outline around finished designs, I use Micron Pens or Tombow Mono Twin. Micron offers a variety of sizes for different thicknesses (also, different colors). Tombow comes with two different size tips on the same pen (0,4 mm and 0.8 mm) and is very practical. It has a long lasting permanent ink. You can draw over ink with other markers instantly while Micro paint needs completely dry before using the pen or else you risk ruining the tip of your pen with paint. I always have both at home.

Tombow Mono Twin

For clean, white designs, my favorite pen is this Uni-ball Signo gel pen.

A #wordrocks painted with white Uni-ball Signo.

For bright, detailed designs, Moonlight Series gelly roll pens by Sakura America are really beautiful. Be sure the gelly roll pens you purchase are the bold point. I don't use my set a lot but as the price is very good it's worthwhile to have at home. Attention: never use ModPodge to seal a rock painted with Moonlight pens. 

For children, liquid chalk pens by FunChalk are a blast!  The chunky tip makes drawing designs and letters super easy for them.

Martha Stewart Acrylic Paint

Martha Stewart paint is my favorite. It is highly pigmented so you need fewer layers to get a beautiful color surface. For rocks below (see picture) I just needed one layer to get them perfectly covered. You'll find different finishes: Satin, Matte, Gloss, Pearl, Metallic and Glitter. Satin is my favorite.

Martha Stewart paints are more expensive than other brands but it worths each penny. 

If you prefer to invest less money, Apple Barrel is your choice!

#wordrocks  with Martha Stewart paint

Scribbles Dimensional Fabric Paint

These fabric paints are so easy for kids to use: they can write simple words or draw hearts and rainbows. You can find them different finishes but my favorite ones are the glitter and the neon ones.

Rainbows made easily with 3D fabric paint

Paintbrushes and tools

These are so far my favorite ones: Ooly The Brush Works . The set has all the styles you need: small flat, small angle, x-small, small round, medium round, medium filbert and large flat. Thet have nylon brushes with gradiated colors for a really fun Ombrè effect. The bristles are tightly bound and don't come off onto your project. They're easy to clean too, just rinse with water, blot dry and store them.

Dotting Tools

For mandalas or dot art, these dotting tools are the best. You'll use the small balls more than the big ones, but the set is worthwhile. 


I started using ModPodge (a product that doesn't exist in Brazil). Experience showed me that as it is a water-soluble product, it's not a good idea to seal the rocks if you are planning to hide your #wordrocks outdoors. The Dishwasher Safe Formula is a good option but has the negative side that you need to wait for 30 days (yes, I said 30 days) for the rock to be ready to face nature! 


Although spray sealer is aerosol (and not environmental friendly) they dry quickly. If you want a more natural look for the rock, use the matte version. For a shining look, use the gloss version.

I wait till the end to share my favorite tool for rock painting: the heat tool. Now I'm painting a lot of ombrè and rainbow rocks and they need a lot of layers. This amazing tool makes a layer totally dry in one or two minutes so I can keep working in the next layers very fast, Its a must have!

For more ideas:
Instagram Word Rocks Project