Gift Shop = Continuing Ed (from HHT Session)

Jacob's Ladders have been popular at our shop.

A Jacob's Ladder from Walnut Hill

The take-away during this part of the workshop was: Use your gift shop to continue educating people after they leave the museum.

Kirsten and I had a tour of the shop with the museum educator who had run it for awhile. She provided some interesting information:

  • Kids’ gifts sell the most, especially if the goods are no more than $5.
  • Candy sells well and it’s cheap to buy.
  • They have beautiful adult gifts that stay unsold for years. They recommend against investing in high-end crafts.
  • They had a display of Walnut Hill Crafts wooden toyssee These toys are popular and fairly inexpensive. Note: Call them to get access to their wholesale store–Walnut Hill Crafts, 660 Old Field Creek Rd, Grassy Creek, NC 28631, 336-982-3022.
  • Dover Books on slavery (a theme of the Rufus King Manor) sell well, as do coloring books. Dover Books are inexpensive.
  • Bookmarks DO NOT sell well anymore.
  • Since most of the buyers are children, lay out the shop with them in mind. For example, don’t put things on high shelves that kids can’t see. Light it well.
  • For seasonal events, sell a subset of your goods outside the shop; sell a signature item.

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