12 Adult Coloring Books: Relax, Unwind & Rediscover this Favorite Childhood Activity

updated May 4, 2019
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(Image credit: Lila Ruby King Shop)

The New York Times treads a fine line of documenting a trend and creating one, but since its article about the rising popularity of adult coloring books last month several friends have mentioned to me that they have hopped on the coloring band wagon and find it a fun, relaxing way to unwind. If you’d like to give it a try and are looking for something more sophisticated than what you’re finding in the drugstore aisle, here are twelve great coloring books for adults:

(Image credit: Lila Ruby King Shop)

Colour In Collaboration No. 4 – Patterns, $5 (PDF) by Lila Ruby King on Etsy. This is one of 7 collections you can buy and download – start coloring right away!

(Image credit: Amazon)

Rosie Flo’s Kitchen, $7.76 on Amazon. All the Rosie Flo books are terrific and suitable for both kids and adults. These are go-to presents for me to give to kids and now to grownups, too.

(Image credit: Bas Bleu)

Enchanted Forest: An Inky Quest and Coloring Book, $15.95 at Bas Bleu. Johanna Basford’s books, profiled by the Times, (the first one is Secret Garden) have really ignited the trend and the books have sold out in many places.

(Image credit: Amazon)

Pattern and Design Coloring Book by Jenean Morrison, $8.59 on Amazon. Morrison has also done a second volume of this book as well as coloring books of flowers and mandals. You can even give it a test run – here’s a page you can download and print from Flower Designs Coloring Book (Volume 1), courtesy of Jenean Morrison.

(Image credit: Art of Zen Designs)

Color Me Zen, $25 at Art of Zen Designs on Etsy. Katie Funk calls her coloring books “a stylistic interpretation of the meditative art of the mandala”. If you’d like something with a little less detail, try The Chillax Edition.

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Outside the Lines: An Artists’ Coloring Book for Giant Imaginations, $12.20 on Amazon. Looking for something a bit edgier? Try this one with contributions from more than 100 artists including fine artists, street artists and graphic artists.

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Fashion Coloring Book, $15 by Big Fashion Book on Etsy. Fashion and style lovers, this book is for you.

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Arabesque Designs Coloring Book, $5.99 by Nick Crossling. This is one of a huge and affordable selection of coloring books in the Creative Haven line by Dover Publishing aimed at adults.

(Image credit: Bas Bleu)

The Art of Nature Coloring Book with 30 colored pencils, $28.90 at Bas Bleu. Shaded illustrations inspired by vintage botanical and scientific prints.

(Image credit: Pomegranate)

Kawase Hasui Coloring Book, $7.95 at Pomegranate. Small colored versions of Hasui’s work is included so you can choose to replicate or go your own way.

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Doodle Invasion: Zifflin’s Coloring Book, $8.53 on Amazon. Not into flowers and patterns? Try this quirkier book filled with off-beat creatures from the mind of doodle artist Kerby Rosanes.

(Image credit: Amazon)

Color Me Happy, $13.19 at Amazon (temporarily out of stock). This is one of three books by art therapist Lacy Mucklow (the others are Color Me Calm and the forthcoming Color Me Stress-Free) riding the adult coloring wave.