Claire Lamman, Harvard University
February 28, 2022
We all know the recipe for a great scientific collaboration: novel technology, topical science goals, and cool stickers.
In November 2021 we achieved the final ingredient with the launch of our official DESI Swag Shop.
The DESI shop is hosted on the third-party site Redbubble. This is a place for independent artists to sell their designs on a variety of products—everything from t-shirts to shower curtains. While not specifically designed for organizations to distribute swag, it is a convenient way to make a large selection of items easily available to individuals around the world. We set our shop settings to 0% profit margin—which means DESI makes no money and the prices are as low as possible.
In honor of the opening of our online shop, I made a special DESI-gn that highlights both the science and instrumentation parts of our collaboration. “Dark Energy” is represented by a map of large-scale structure, and “Spectroscopic Instrument” is represented by our focal plane and its 5,000 robotic positioners.
Four months later, 486 items have been purchased from our shop. The most popular are:
Beyond stickers and t-shirts the shop also has masks, mugs, puzzles, posters, and even socks. Here’s a look at how the popularity of these items compare:
Stats like this may be helpful for conference organizers deciding what types of merch products to use. The key takeaway here: never forget the stickers!