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UPDATED 10|19|2010 new source of wallpaper murals
Space Chapter Merchandise
Your Parent Organization may or may not allow you to charge membership dues - whether that is the case or not, there may be things your chapter wants to do, equipment and exhibit materials it wants to buy, projects it wants to undertake, for which available member dues may not be sufficient. This page is about merchandise development options.
- Buy ready made merchandise at discount or wholesale to resell for chapter profits
- Produce your own merchandise items. Consider your available talent pool, talent experience, project manpower needs, money for experimentation and product R&D. Don't be afraid to push your limits, or to do targeted recruiting for the talents your project needs and which you / your chapter lacks. In the meantime, brainstorm your project as far as you can to have something sketched out for freshly recruited talent should your search be successful.
Chapter Leaders: If your chapter has developed or acquired products for sale, or held successful fundraising events, please submit details.
mural info needs updating (repeat on exhibits page etc.)
Murals updated 9/20/2009
Buttons (separate page)
BooksSUBJECTS: Astronomy, Planetary science, Space exploration histories, Grand Visions, Space Art Books, Rocketry, Hard (and hard to find) Science Fiction (plausible near term inner solar system stories about the Moon, Mars, Asteroids, Space Stations, Space Settlements) - remember, you don't just want to make money, you want to give your customers good reads that will cultivate their appreciation of the Space Frontier.
SOURCES: check the Online Stores section below, but also discounters like Half Price Books [category: astronomy] [category: astrophysics and space science] Also University bookstores, government bookstores, etc.
USED BOOKS: Your chapter could make a habit of grabbing up used and old books on the topics above as opportunity allows, and run a periodic book selling event at a place and time where traffic should be good. Thrift shops and Estate Sales will sometimes have "finds."
Calendars - space theme calendars can be a good fall sales item IF you can buy them at a discount in quantity. Our listing of some of the calendars available at retail below is not necessarily an indication that they can be purchased wholesale. You can sell even out of date calendars, just for the artwork, but you might have to sell them at a loss.
Earth calendars with Moon Phases day by day, eclipse schedules, etc.
- The Lunarian Moon Calendar - Stunning Poster style, take a peek!
- The Moon & Imagination Wall Calendar - Cover (wow!)
Space Exploration Calendars
Wallpaper Murals - Nothing else can create just that atmosphere in a den, library, study, or rec room, or even in a bedroom!Environmental Graphics, Inc. used to produce three space theme murals (listed below) and they were available as special order items at Menards homecenters (midwest states) for about $70. Now they are hard to find and much more expensive, as they are produced not on paper but on removable vinyl sheets.
Magic Murals is another Company in the business
- C397 Saturn and three moons
- C384 "Earthrise" - see photo of this mural in bedroom of MMM Editor Peter Kokh
- C804 "Shuttle in Orbit"
Shopping for Space Murals - Google Image Search "Space Murals"
You will find all sorts of murals through Google Image Search, but the problem is finding something affordable.
Earth Moon space mural, 12'9" x 8'10", comes with paste and in 8 panels, sale $110
83 Space Murals - For a full siz mural, you are looking at about $600!
Making Money on Murals: IF you can get murals at an unusually low price, it may be possible to make a profit just by reselling them at a modest markup. A better bet is to sell them with installation. Many a customer would like to have one, but is shy about putting it up him/herself. Your chapter profit is what you make for installation. Caution: quote a price that does not include wall repairs or preparation (removing old paper, repairing cracks, priming, etc.) and put that restriction in writing to avoid any misunderstandings. Followup
A Mural For Your Chapter: Mural Display Backdrops for your information table or meeting place. Check out lean-to and zigzag
Door Murals - if you don't have enough free wall space for a wall mural, but you do have flat hollow core doors, you can get special door murals (33"x86" trim to fit) and some of them really pop. But we haven't uncovered any with a space theme. If you come across any, be sure to let us know.
Start a Wall & Door Mural Making Enterprise: There don't seem to be any space theme murals other than the three from Environmental Graphics listed above. Yet the number of promising space mural subjects seems unlimited - future moonbases, canyons of Mars, shuttle launch at night ..... There are plenty of stunning photos (many public domain) to use, and plenty of stunning art. We really need an entrepreneur to take this business opportunity to heart, find a cheaper way of producing them, and make money spreading the gospel of space!
Space Wallpaper Borders - as of 10|08|2002, EBay was selling one (15 ft roll) for $8.99 with 24 available
Space | Planet Wallies Wallies - Mural-13420-Space (Planets)Each set contains: (9) Planets 6" diameter to 25" x 11" Mural $16.50 per Set + $4.50 Priority Shipping (via PayPal) These are individual pre-pasted, vinyl-coated wallpaper cutouts. Just wet the back of the Wallies with a wet sponge stick them to the wall with an arrangement of your choice. [Boys room - appropriate]
Presto Chango Decor.com adds no removable Space Wall Sticker Mural for children7/28/05 Hello, I was reading your Space Chapter Hub Merchandise Page,
I Own and operate a web base business designing , and manufacturing wall sticker mural sets, and magnetic vinyl sheets that provide interactive murals for children.(note the magnetic murals are still in the design stage and not offered at this time.
Your article addressed the need to educate as well as to inspire young minds to the excitement of space. One of the ways was to find space mural, calander and such. This inspired me and my wife Tracy to design an Outer Space wall sticker set, and we just wanted to introduce ourselves. If you have any further idea's of future products we could design to help educate and inspire our youth please contact us anytime.
Steve and Tracy Jones
Presto Chango Decor Inc.
727 515 4282
Bumper | Luggage | Window Stickers - note that bumper stickers are in disfavor now that cars no longer have chrome bumpers. On the other hand, the need to distinguish your luggage from someone else's has never been greater. For Luggage Stickers you have free hand as to size and shape.Production Economies
- don't invest too much until you see if your item(s) sell. You can design your own bumper stickers on your computer and print them on Print & Stick Gloss Paper available at Office Max, Office Depot, or Staples. Use a paper slicer to make clean cuts.
- Farm out production only for sticker designs that prove to be a hit
- Artwork - use NASA photos, line drawings, etc. See Buttons for ideas - remember, people are going to see these from a distance
- Captions - name of your organization, your web address (drop the http:// or even the http://www), pro-space slogans, humor captions (see Buttons for ideas) - remember, people are going to see these from a distance and may only have a fleeting moment to read them - fewer words, bigger print is good - so be concise!
Ready to go Bumper Stickers
- Browse Online Stores
- Look for a suitable second hand carousel rack at a store supply outlet, when you have that many to sell!
Models & KitsModel and Diorama kits - Modular space station and outpost kits
- Commercially available models are limited - check Online Stores
- Commercial Modular kits are nonexistent - see "Enterprise Oportunity" immediately below
- Using off-the-shelf PVC parts to create outposts and stations (How-to page U.C.)
- Building a Simple Mars Hab diorama (How-to page U.C.)
Exhibit replication instructions
Enterprise Opportunity: we could really use a space station and Mars/Moon outpost line with a number of interchangeable models (purchaser gets to play architect) None of the established toy makers and model makers seem to be interested.
ApparelShirts - T-shirts, Sweatshirts, Blazers, Denim shirts
- Produce your own T-shirts by creating art / logos / message etc. on your computer and printing on to transfer paper, then ironing on the design on plain T-shirts or shirts, white or dark. Better source - different kinds, different sizes, price breaks on quantity orders
Caps - baseball, beret, skipper, other - (the easiest thing is a plain cap bought at quantity discount to sell with a button of the customers choice out of those you have for sale)
Patches (embroidered) - Missions - Agencies - Societies. Embroidered patches are a poor bet unless ordered in quantity (250, 500 or more)
Jewelry - pins, tie clasps, earrings, belt buckles, etc.
Book Bags - one could make custom book bags by getting plain ones at discount and applying iron on transfers (see at Shirts, above)
Ready to wear SOURCES: see the Online Stores section below, but don't be afraid to originate items of your own design! Or just type what you want in Google.com and you may just find it.
Suncatchers - you don't have to be a stained glass craftsman anymore!These days there are easier do-it-yourself friendly ways to make suncatchers than to take up the stained glass trade. Craft stores have supplies that let you design your suncatchers with liquid, then bake them in the oven. Another option uses a pane of glass, peel and stick "leading" strips, and glass paint.
What you do need is a simple "cartoon" style design. If you can come up with such a design - for planets, rockets, astronauts, or other space theme figures - and have simple patience and the ability to follow directions, you may just find yourself in business.
The stress is on you as a designer, rather than on you as a craftsman.
Flags - Earth flags - Moon Flags - Mars Flags - Europa Flags Solar System Flags
There are no "official flags" for any celestial bodies, though the Mars Society had adopted (by a decision from the top) its Mars flag. There are quite a few designs floating around out there, and no one has closed the door on new submissions. Pick a design already proposed, or create a new one. People want the symbolism, and understand that no flag can be official until adopted by the government (if and when one is established) of the place in question.
It costs quite a bit to "have flags made" and as a fundraiser, its a bad idea because the only way you can sell them at a profit is to buy more than you can sell.
Use iron on transfer technology to make your own. [good source of inkjet transfer paper] - use a fabric that does not stretch or shrink very much. You may have some sewing to do. Sizing them to fit the width of white hankerchiefs, will cut down your sewing burden to one edge, but leaves you with a white border.
Flags are traditionally simple: the simpler the design, the easier to sew - but nowadays many are using photographic images and printing methods, thus a trend to more complexity. But the advantages of simplicity remain - school kids can color them - and they work on symbolism, which is important.
Some ready to go designs:Earth - (the United Nations flag is the flag of the United Nations, not of Earth itself.) - two colors yet complex
- Dark Blue flag with Earth Photo - widely accepted (Earth Day and others) comples photo design
- James W. Cadle Flag of Earth (1970) - a simple Sun>Earth>Moon design - accepted by SETI League
- Winning design of European Children's contest (ESA) - complex, touching a lot of bases (too many by the standards of most national flags)
- Earth Colors "Terrestra" design by Peter Kokh
- Earth Flag by Shaun Moss with accepted modification suggested by Peter Kokh
Moon - one could make a Black Flag with superimposed Full Moon photo in the middle - below are existing designs
- Moon flag by Peter Kokh as a mate to Earth Flag by Shaun Moss
- The Moon Society held a Moon Flag contest open to kids in 2002 with results to be announced in November.
Mars - one could make a simple Black Flag with Mars Photo in the middle - below are existing designs by others
- Tricolor Mars Flag "republican tricolor" designed by Pacall Lee and inspired by Kim Stanley Robinson's epic series of novels: Red Mars, Green Mars, Blue Mars - adopted by the leadership (not the membership) of the Mars Society
- Red Planet / Black Space Flag by Mark Knoke
- Mars Peace Flag by Kurt Lassiwitz
- Earth to Mars Flag by Red Horizons
- Mars Flag by Tarmarack Czarnik
- Marsand moons Flag by Gary Sutliff
- Colors of Mars Flag by Peter Kokh
- Mars, moons, Sagittarius design by Tom Gangale
- Sun, Earth, moons in Martian Sky design by Bo Ryding
- Crescents of Mars & moons against colors of Earth background by Jon Wiley
- Volcanoes and Valleys Tricolor Flag of Frans Blok - an elegant simple flag that says Mars
Europa? Venus? Other worlds - no known designs
Sun | Solar System - no known designs
Fundraisers - fundraising is hard work and can burn out people in a hurry. Proceed with caution! Some members will not care to be out hustling. This is definitely not everyone's cup of tea, and no member should be faulted for declining to participate!Food products - pizzas, candy, other specialties - such fundraisers are a lot of work. In 1996, the Lunar Reclamation Society (NSS-Milwaukee) raised $1400 selling pizzas, mostly to fellow employees and neighbors.
Ticket sales - acting as an agent
Coupon books -
Tour arranging - group tours
Buy a brick campaigns -
Raffles - be careful to follow state and local laws that may apply
Car washes -
Fundraising Yellow Pages
- Don't forget to sell memberships in your national affiliation society, in your chapter (if separate dues).
- An option that may appeal to some is to cast an NSS membership as a "Subscription to Ad Astra" magazine, and have a selection of copies on hand for inspection.
- Have membership forms on hand and include items relevant for chapter use (best time to call, call me about _____. ____. ____ etc.)
- Have Receipts with tear-off Membership Cards ready to put in new member's wallet
- memberships with kickbacks
- Payment method: anyone with a credit card also has access to an ATM, so take checks or cash. Ninety+% of membership forms taken home will end up in the waste basket
CERTIFICATES: Brainstorm some certificate idea: Lunar pioneer training workshop, Mars Crew training completion, ISS Crew training, etc. and either have certificates ready for you chapter calligrapher, or ready to spit out on your laptops printer after inserting the name in a calligraphy font (if they do it, any misspelling is their problem). Charge a "donation" fee to "further the work of" your chapter. If you can work in a framing coupon for some framing or frame-it-yourself outlet, that would be great.
GLOBES: Twelve inch globes of the Moon were once available for about $30. Twelve inch globes of Mars, and Venus are available but overpriced and, as every seller quotes the same price - $99.95 - there is clear evidence of price fixing. Stay away from these items unles you can find a wholeseller.
AUCTIONS OF DONATED ITEMS: In Milwaukee, some years ago, a local science fiction club asked its members to donate items they were willing to part with for an auction (among the members) and raised about $500. This works if you have enough people (a hundred or more?) So you might want to do this only on a cooperative basis with other groups for a prorated share of the take. But if you can get business and industry to donate items, that could be all good.
CONFERENCE HOSTING: If this is a purely local event, any profits are yours to keep. But earning a profit is easier said than done. If you are an NSS chapter and bid successfully to host an International Space Development Conference, NSS takes any loss, but you get to keep 25% of any profits (was 50%, so it is now much less rewarding than formerly.) ISDCs that made good money: 1989 Chicago, 1991 San Antonio, 1993 Huntsville, 1998 Milwaukee, 1999 Houston. All too often, many of the individuals end up burned out, and some host chapters have gone under altogether. Many of the new members you attract during run up to the conference leave in the anticlimax. So this is a risky business proposition.
FOLLOWUP: If possible give receipts from a book that has stubs or duplicates. Those names and addresses may be worth something to you later.
Online Stores for products you might be able to get at discount for quantitySky & Telescope Store
Lunar Traders Catalog (Moon Society)
National Space Society Space Place Store
Planetary Society Store at Space Media
Space Studies Institute Products
Space Frontier Foundation Products
Showroom | Challenger Center Online
Also try observatories and planetariums, NASA Centers, NASA Resource Centers, etc.