Gift at the Gardner: Not Your Average Museum Shop

Store Profile

Location: Boston
Specialty: Fresh gifts and objects inspired by Mrs. Gardner
Price range: ($) Budget - ($$) Mid-Range

Store History

  • Founded: January 2012
  • Headquarters: Boston, MA

Website

gift.gardnermuseum.org

Gift is the type of shop you'd expect to see on Charles Street in Beacon Hill: full of pretty stationery, gorgeous books and art, and curiosities gathered from around the globe. There are no brick-lined streets outside this storefront — as the newly expanded shop inside the recent addition to the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Gift warrants a visit, admission or not. This isn't a museum shop filled with uninspired tchotchkes and the same old art prints. Tucked inside the beautiful glass structure designed by Renzo Piano, Gift at the Gardner is run by former Cursive at ABC Carpet & Home buyer, M.K. Wong. She focuses on gathering items inspired by Mrs. Gardner's love of art, music, and travel. The museum's famous courtyard directly influences the shop, where Wong arranges the table in the window display to evoke the colors and the feeling of the ever-changing garden. Gorgeous Turkish candles with a woodblock print carved into it share space with two happy wooden pig bookends. There are books on Isabella's Italian furniture collection and her travels, Victorian-style trinkets like sculptural opera glasses and delicate mirrored boxes, but also modern typography prints, brightly colored scarves, and pretty silicone coasters. You really won't miss the keychains and floating pens, though a mini-Isabella gliding through her courtyard would be pretty neat.

(Images: Tara Bellucci)

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