“The Mill Shop – More than just a gift shop…”
New Lanark Mill Shop; a place where New Lanark visitors can visit at the end of their day to relax and peacefully browse through the vast range of products that the shop has to offer. From books and homeware to gifts and New Lanark wool, the New Lanark Mill Shop’s product range offers a wide variety for all different types of customers. The Mill Shop was once located on the ground floor of Mill 2, however, it was relocated to the floor above in summer 2014, which provided the shop with a new lease of life and customers with a new shopping experience.
The Mill Shop is currently managed by Julie Brown. Julie Brown has an impressive, diverse career before managing the shop – jobs ranging from interior design to owning her own business. Julie is fairly new to New Lanark and has already put her own stamp on the site. One of Julie’s key ambitions for the Mill Shop is to emphasise and promote New Lanark’s Organic, home-spun, tartan. The Organic Tartan is a blue/green colour with a subtle purple and a hint of yellow shining through – shades all inspired by the River Clyde and New Lanark’s woodland surroundings. The tartan is the world’s first Organic Tartan certified by the Soil Association.
If you visit the Mill Shop you will be able to see the Organic Tartan range for yourself . New Lanark staff will also be wearing a piece of New Lanark’s other tartan fabric (non organic), perhaps in the form of a skirt or a waistcoat. Julie hopes that the Organic Tartan can be used in other parts of the site, for example, in the New Lanark Mill Hotel or in the Leisure Suite. However, Julie is still in the early stages of the developing the tartan product range – and one day hopes to introduce a core range of own brand fabrics and perhaps introduce some seasonal fabrics.
New Lanark is visited by a range of difference audiences: whether it’s a family day out, wedding guests or an elderly couple going for lunch. One thing they all have in common is a visit to the shop. This is because the shop has such a diverse range of products to offer and can suit any customer. Currently, the books are a big seller which proves that there is still some appreciation for a hardback book in this modern age. Julie is looking to improve the food section they currently have on offer by getting more local produce from farms nearby in order to broaden the range. Julie also wishes to improve the children’s toy area.
The Mill Shop was recently a host on Worldwide Knitting Day (Saturday 18th June). New Lanark was one of over 1000 events taken place across 57 countries. We were overwhelmed by the response to Knitting Day as local knitters came down to knit in a social environment, trading tips and advice with each other. We even had two visitors from Austria who added New Lanark Knit Day to their list of ‘things to do in Scotland’. Due to the success the knitting event brought us we are going to be hosting one every month! The next knitting event is scheduled for the 31st of July. An amazing, social event for knitters, who have proven that you can still connect and socialise with people without the use of technology.
Within the Mill Shop Brooks Menswear, a local company, showcase some of the finest gents fashions made in Scotland including an excellent range of lambswool Hawick Knitwear, Harris Tweed jackets and cashmere and lambswool scarves. From July 2016 the Mill Shop will also be joined by Joules – Established in Britain over 25 years ago and crafted with true British style and eccentricity, Joules designs upbeat, colourful clothing, footwear and accessories for women who live life to the full.
The Mill Shop compliments the rest of the site here at New Lanark as it allows you to take a little piece of New Lanark heritage home with you. The products in the shop are linked with the hotel, for example, the soap used in the hotel is sold in the shop. Julie hopes the same can be done with the tartan in the foreseeable future.
The New Lanark Mill Shop is not just a ‘gift shop’ which people may believe. It is its own unique, branded shop which sells a vast range of products suitable for any age. The Mill Shop is a fundamental part of the site as it truly reflects what New Lanark has to offer.
The New Lanark Mill Shop is open 7 days a week – we’ll see you soon! (9am – 5pm Monday – Saturday, 10am – 5pm on Sunday)
Ronan – New Lanark Marketing Intern