A demand for colouring books is sweeping the nation, but it’s not children snapping them up by the thousands – it’s fully grown adults.
The Works, the discount retailer which has a store on Back Church Street, Blackpool and more than 300 stores nationwide, sold more copies of Art Therapy – An Anti-Stress Colouring Book – than any other product in store or online.
It sold more products than Disney’s animated film Frozen, television series Game of Thrones and box office smash-hit Divergent – with it being hailed as an excellent stress reliever.
Helen Barnard, store manager, said the response to the book has been staggering.
She added: “People can’t get enough of it. It is so relaxing. I think the books have always been around but have really taken off.
“It is just so relaxing. Everyone is so busy but at the end of the day you can sit and doodle, relaxing the night away.
“Children and adults get together. Some parts of the book contain cartoons and gardening, while others have flowers and dreamcatchers.”
The trend is said to have started in France, where it is promoted as a therapeutic hobby and a way of rediscovering lost creativity.
Publishers of the book claim to have carefully crafted the content so even amateur artists can enjoy colouring and benefit from the apparent stress-relieving effect its increased focus and creativity can provides.
Helen added: “We have had to get in a lot of extra stock.
“At times we’ve struggled to keep up and have had to order loads more.
“It has been a bit of a surprise people have got into it. It is a pastime to welcome back. It is something you can get involved in with your child. You both work on a picture and go from there.
“It is a really good thing. It is a way of sitting down and doing something you both enjoy.”
Kevin Keaney, CEO of The Works, said: “It’s fair to say that we’ve been taken aback a little by this new trend, but it’s great to see so many people embracing their creative side.
“We’re working really hard to keep up with the demand so our customers are not left disappointed.
“Our staff have reported seeing some amazing illustrations and we’ve also had one or two instances of customers using pens and pencils from the in store stationery section to colour in the book before they buy it.”
For more information go to www.theworks.co.uk