The Truth Behind GW’s New $25 Paint Brushes?


If you missed it from last week, GW unveiled two new paint brushes that retail for around $25 each. Come see why the heck they are so expensive!

Artificer Brush Collection $69 (or around $25 ea)



The Citadel Artificer brushes are the best brushes money can buy, made from the highest-quality sable hair and designed to help you achieve results you wouldn’t have thought you were capable of. This bundle gets you three, in XS, S and M sizes – a set of the greatest layering brushes imaginable, that’ll open up a whole world of potentially-incredible paint jobs on your Citadel miniatures!

So why are these brushes so expensive?

Well here’s what an “insider” has to say about the what has happened in the past:


Source: Rick Priestley (facebook)

Games Workshop don’t make brushes – they buy them in from Winsor & Newton who supply rebranded brushes based on their standard range. Just once – when I was there – we persuaded W&N to do a limited edition of a range based on their premium Series 7 brushes – which are made to a higher standard and are generally held to be the best brushes available. If that’s still the case, I would guess this is the same deal again – W&N Series 7 brushes sized to GW’s ‘inbetween’ brush sizes. If so I’m sure they’re very good. I generally go for Series 7’s myself – as you can buy the sizes you want and many good art suppliers offer them at a discount.


The Winsor Newtwon 4 rounds set of Series 7 brushes sell for about $75 at discounters indeed. Are these the same brushes that GW is currently offering though their stores?

Winsor and Newton Series 7 Kolinsky Sable Watercolor Brush Sets $75


Originally commissioned by Queen Victoria in her favorite size—7! These Series 7 watercolor brush sets  are still made in the royal tradition out of only the finest Kolinsky Red Sable hair mounted within cupro-nickel ferrules attached to balanced, black, Italian Albata, polished wood handles. Handmade in England, a Series 7 brush should be part of any watercolorist’s available tools.

4 Small Rounds Set – This set includes 4 round brushes in sizes 0, 1, 2 and 3.

Vazalaar crunched the numbers on it from the Pound Sterling side of things below:

Man, this is becoming confusing. The Artificer colection cost £42 and on the WN site the WN 7 series 00, 0 and 1 cost together £37,1 thus when buying from GW website you pay £5.1 more than when you buy the same brushes from the WN website. Thus when you compare both products, which are the same from their official companies websites you pay around 13% more for the same collection of brushes, but with the GW name on it in comparison when you buy it from Winsor & Newton directly.


Either way it may be a good idea to have such qood quality brushes “on site” for hobbyists, the only question is if they will bite on the extra price tag. With GW these days it seems to only be crazy if it doesn’t work.

-How much are good tools worth to you?

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About Rob Baer

Virginia Restless, Miniature Painter & Single Father to 3 Cats.
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  • oldgrue

    While it might be a good deal if you were getting a size 4 most of us will be using size 2 or less.

    Even the most basic research says this is a bad deal.

  • Champildhir

    Here in Amazon Japan I find each of the WN brushes for around 1600JPY, which is around USD$14…. so no GW brushes for me (which in Japan are USD$29.6 each…)

  • Michael Schenk

    Mmmm… I don’t buy it.

    I’ve used W&N brushes of all types, shapes and sizes. I now own the very prestigious Series 7 brushes. I’ve picked up and held an “Artificer” brush and I can say this: it’s not a Series 7. It may have been outsourced to W&N, but it does not have the weight balance of a Series 7 brush. It may have pure kolinsky sable (good lord that would be an achievement for GW), and the store clerk was surprisingly transparent about how much percentage each brush had of real sable, so apparently these do have the real deal in them… buuuut I’m tempted to say they’re not rebranded S7’s.

    The last generation of GW brushes, circa 2012, often came with split hairs and issues like that. GW boasted about how they were hand made and had sable in them back then, too. I called bullshit then and, since being rather burned out by GW’s crap and their high prices, I call bullshit now.

    And besides… My Series 7 brushes were $4-$7 cheaper than the price of the Artificer brushes. Call it good bargain hunting but there it is.

  • Paulo Picolomini

    Wait I’m a little confused. What size Winsor & Newton brushes correspond to the GW Artifices XS, S, and M?

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