Philadelphia's museums are home to some of the world's most precious artifacts and priceless works of art but they have pretty sweet gift shops, too. Our picks for where to shop artfully this fall.
Fabric Museum and Workshop
1214 Arch St.
Dedicated to showing the work of contemporary artists working with textiles, the Fabric Workshop and Museum’s gift shop is a revelation in screenprinting. T-shirts, throw pillows, purses, toys and more are all created by artists in residence, and their art books are the stuff coffee tables’ dreams are made of.
The Mutter Museum
19 S. 22nd St.
While in town taping for his new TV show, Anthony Bourdain recently declared that the Mutter had the “best gift shop ever,” and for good reason. Like its galleries, the museum’s shop embraces the darker side of the medical arts, stocking creepy little skeleton dolls, mummy-shaped soaps and Anthrax plushes. We recommend capitalizing on its playfully morbid merch around Christmas, when they offer much better versions of traditional holiday fare: conjoined gingerbread men cookie cutters, crime scene tape scarves and skull ornaments.
Philadelphia Museum of Art
26th St. and the Parkway
With four separate stores, the Art Museum has way more than Van Gogh posters (although if that’s your deal, they do have quite the stash). It’s the perfect place to stock up on reasonably priced, just-quirky-enough jewelry and home trinkets that’ll benefit from the “Oh, I picked it up at the Art Museum” mystique. Looking to splurge? Check out their limited-edition Capucci mini dresses ($3,800), the ultimate souvenir from their Roberto Capucci exhibit.
Philadelphia Art Alliance
251 S. 18th St.,
As part of its new show, “Notions: Jewelry by Kathe Scullion,” the Philadelphia Art Alliance is hosting a pop-up shop Oct. 8-17 featuring Scullion’s nature-inspired pieces. Stop by on select days for events including an earring-making class (Oct. 13-14), a jewelry-themed storytelling session (Oct. 9) and cocktails with the artist (Oct. 16).