Updated for 2017!
If I bought everything that caught my eye at Disney World, how totally broke I would be. I’m a child of the 70s, and we did a lot of looking at souvenirs back then, because none of us kids had a Jay Oh Bee (job!) to pay for anything. My parents had money, but they were too busy sneaking in the Magic Kingdom with food, and some other junk about teaching me the lesson you can’t have everything you want. (No, and Blah, blah, blah is what I heard at the time.)
Some of my favorite adult window shopping at Disney is in jewelry stores like Arribas Brothers and the Art of Disney stores. Even if I am not taking home any huge Disney themed portraits, this has certainly never stopped me from looking.
So while in Disney Springs, an adult must do is the Art of Disney store.
The Art of Disney store in Disney Springs could more aptly be described as a Disney art gallery. Located across from 365 Days of Christmas and near Goofy’s Candy Co., I could easily spend an entire summer afternoon admiring the latest in Disney paintings and sculptures in the cool air conditioning.
In the Art of Disney offers a unique assortment of Disney animation art, original paintings, giclees and other prints. They carry also unique figurines, on the pricey side of shopping, and other more reasonable priced collectible items such as Vinylmation.
Disney Springs has tons of shops and eateries to keep you occupied on those Disney occasions you don’t want to use your expensive tickets.
At certain times throughout the day, you will find an artist seated at a long work table drawing Disney characters, enlarged on a screen and viewed in large detail on the wall. It’s fascinating to watch the drawing process, both the drawing of lines and often the un-drawing. You can purchase these creations in frames, often with pins or character watches to match.
Many of the works you find here contain bright vivid colors and exquisite detail not typically found on many of the Disney pieces throughout the parks and resorts. It’s like a variation on a familiar theme, which makes for a nice change of visual pace. You’ve seen Mickey and Snow White hundreds of times, but perhaps you haven’t seen them as they are depicted here.
The paintings are undoubtedly my favorite. I have a fine appreciation for painters and sculptors, because my personal paintings looks like the product of a third grade art class. I appreciate the long hours of practice spent honing their craft.
With Disney’s high standards, it takes a lot of skill to make it to the walls and shelves of the Art of Animation. The spin on the usual colors captivates me.
So how much are we talking about? Prices are actually not as high as you might think. You can pop out with something in the $100 range, and prices quickly escalate from there. But looking is free, if you can keep your wallet in your pocket.
Another of my favorite Disney Springs stores? Basin.
The regular hours of operation for the Art of Disney store are Sunday through Thursday from 9:30 a.m to 11:00 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 9:30 a.m to 11:30 p.m. These operating hours are subject to change without notice.
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Amanda Major is the creator of cheapskateprincess.com. She remembers her first visit to Magic Kingdom like it was yesterday, because she had a ham sandwich tucked in her shorts pocket. The whole family snuck in their lunch; you can’t make that kinda stuff up. 40 years worth of trips to Orlando later, she is still trying to save money on vacations.
Amanda is a Disney Vacation Club Member and Annual Pass holder. Her amazing husband, band director Carl Major, plus three teen children and two dogs keep her busy. Amanda teaches Leadership to high school seniors in the almost-coastal town of Foley, Alabama. Read about her cheapskating local vacations with this link. When she’s not writing, she’s reading, walking somewhere, or paddling a kayak. Life is indeed a blast.
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