Thanksgiving and the holiday shopping season are upon us! Whether you are looking to shop or get away from it all this weekend, please stop by the MSV.

By Bonnie Barr

Bring visiting family and friends by to see large-scale contemporary paintings and intricate etchings created more than 350 years ago by Rembrandt (yes—the Rembrandt!). The MSV is open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday of Thanksgiving weekend, and we will be celebrating Museum Store Sunday from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. on December 1.

On Sunday the store will offer tastes of its popular holiday gift-giving foods and showcase items that make great presents. Here’s a peek at some of the store’s newest items and perennial favorites.

The first item ever acquired for the Museum’s Shenandoah Valley Collection was the landscape painting View of Winchester, Virginia, 1856 by German artist Edward Beyer (1820–1865). Only at the MSV are you able to find silk ponchos, scarves, tea towels, and—new this year—socks featuring this painting. The tag on the socks include a free admission to the MSV, too!

Creamed honey and fruitcake made by the monks at Berryville’s Holy Cross Abbey are holiday favorites, selling out each year. Samples of both products will be available on Sunday…don’t knock this fruitcake until you try it! Available in almond, blueberry, brandy, cinnamon, lemon, natural, orange, and raspberry flavors, the creamed honey is made from honey sourced in the Shenandoah Valley, is 100% natural, and has the texture of butter so it is spreadable.

For nature and bird lovers, you can never go wrong giving a Shenandoah Valley-made red cedar bird house, a bird seed wreath, or a bird nesting ball ornament. Just a little larger than a softball and made in Virginia, “nesting ball” ornaments are made of grapevine and filled with natural wool. Each nesting ball has a sturdy yarn hanging loop and a tag with the sheep’s name that provided the wool. After hanging the ornament on a Christmas tree, move the ball to an outside tree branch and birds will find nesting material in the springtime. For the finishing touch to a bird house or bird seed wreath gift, add a blown glass cardinal or blue bird ornament from the ornament tree in the store.

The Shenandoah Valley is known for its pottery and a wide variety of contemporary Valley pottery is available in the store, including hand-built platters, vases, bowls, and mugs impressed with local leaves and flowers by Winchester potter Neena Jhaveri. Perfect for art and nature lovers, these one-of-a-kind works are available in limited quantity and while supplies last.

Have a jewelry lover in your life? Try giving unakite! Found in the Blue Ridge Mountains and the unofficial Virginia state stone, unakite is a type of granite that is pink and green. The Museum Store offers unakite necklaces, earrings, and bracelets reasonably priced from $14–24.

You will also find merchandise related to MSV exhibitions in the store. There’s farm-themed items to complement contemporary Valley landscapes now on view in the Shenandoah Valley Gallery and fun bug stuff for kids to gear us up for the special outdoor exhibition David Rogers’ Big Bugs (at the MSV April 18–September 13, 2020). Youngsters will get a kick out of butterfly farms, ladybug growing kits, bug books, and more. Admission to Big Bugs is only free to MSV members—gift memberships are also available for purchase in the Museum Store. Buy your MSV Gift Membership HERE.

Whether it’s to explore or shop, we hope to see you at the MSV this holiday season! Admission is not required to visit the Museum Store and browse, so drop by. We’d love to help you with your holiday shopping.

Top photo: one-of-a kind Santas carved by artisan Ed Bender are available for purchase in the Museum Store.