The MSU Idea Shop

Whether you’re shopping for next-generation ideas or need a shop to build your own, the MSU Idea Shop is all about bringing concepts to reality. 

Operated in partnership by the university’s College of Business and School of Human Sciences, the Idea Shop houses the Turner A. Wingo Maker Studio and the MSU Retail Product Accelerator. The Maker Studio contains a myriad of wood, polymer, and metal prototyping equipment, as well as an electronics workbench and design suite. The Retail Product Accelerator helps entrepreneurs test market products in a fully-working retail store and gives students experience operating a business.

Located in a 2,000 sq.ft. retail store on Main Street in Starkville, MS, the Idea Shop was made possible by numerous private contributions and support by the USDA Rural Business Development program. The Idea Shop is open to the public seven days per week, and memberships are available. Stop by today!

Turner A. Wingo Maker Studio

The Maker Studio provides a comprehensive assortment of design workstations, 3D printers, electronics workbenches and advanced woodworking tools not commonly available, to help people build anything imaginable. Membership is available to the general public, and various workshops are regularly hosted for newcomers to the “maker movement.”

Membership is available to the general public.

Retail Accelerator Program

The front of the Idea Shop is a fully operational retail store, featuring products sourced from student and faculty entrepreneurs, in addition to other local community startups. This provides an outlet for very early stage entrepreneurs and makers to gain direct experience in commerce and all associated functions of retailing a product, as well as a channel to test new ideas with real, paying customers.

The MSU Retail Accelerator Program is operated by the School of Human Sciences.

Become a Vendor

The MSU Idea Shop accepts applications year-round from merchants interested in placing products in a retail storefront. Any student, faculty, or community startup, who is the original creator or manufacturer of a good, is eligible to apply for consideration in the Idea Shop.

Terms and Conditions:

All MSU Idea Shop products are carried and sold on consignment. Consignment is an arrangement in which a seller (or “consignor”) sends goods to a buyer (or “consignee”) without getting payment for the goods then itself. The consignee or the buyer pays the amount only when the goods are sold, and any unsold inventory is returned.

  • The MSU Idea Shop reserves the right to refuse any vendor or product application, for any reason. If accepted as a vendor, the relationship can be terminated by either party at any time with 14 days notice.
  • Your products will remain your property until such time as they are sold.
  • The MSU Idea Shop agrees to make best effort to sell your goods.
  • The MSU Idea Shop agrees to return to you, upon demand, any unsold merchandise. The goods must be returned in the same or similar condition, unless this is impossible due to shopper damage or theft.
  • The MSU Idea Shop, at it’s discretion, may opt to return unsold goods to you at any time.
  • The MSU Idea Shop agrees to sell the goods at the agreed price points and markdowns.
  • The MSU Idea Shop agrees that all proceeds due, will be paid on a rolling quarterly basis.
  • Under no circumstances can MSU carry products or support any business that is (or otherwise perceived to be): (a) based in a foreign country; (b) engaging in any activity that is illegal under federal and/or state law; (c) lewd or sexual in nature; (d) promoting violence or drug use; (e) gambling; (f) multi-level marketing.
  • You affirm that your business is in compliance with all local, state, and federal tax laws and license requirements and that your business will maintain compliance with all appropriate tax and business compliance guidelines as set forth by the appropriate jurisdictions.

MSU Trademark Licensing:

Vendors in the MSU Idea Shop who wish to sell products containing Mississippi State University designations including designs, trademarks, service marks, logographics, symbols, and other indicia must be licensed.

MSU has a special, expedited Crafter’s License to accommodate individuals producing domestic, handcrafted items in the home with collegiate marks. There are restrictions, which include, but may not be limited to:

  • All items must be hand-made. No commercially manufactured items are allowed.
  • Sales must be direct and not wholesale; however, crafters may have “booths” within retailers such as the MSU Idea Shop.
  • No more than 500 units may be sold per year and total sales per year must not exceed $2,500, whichever occurs first.
  • Sales must be reported annually and contracts will be issued on a fiscal year basis (Jul 1 – Jun 30)
  • In lieu of affixing holograms/labels to the items, crafters will be provided with an “Officially Licensed Collegiate Craft” Certificate and will be required to display the Certificate in the MSU Idea Shop

The licensing fee for the Crafter’s License for the first full year is $120, and $100 to renew annually.

Download Sample Crafter’s License Agreement

Download Official Program Guidelines

Vendors unable to participate under the Crafter’s License must apply as a regular licensee through IMG College Licensing.

All licensing is administered by the Office of Trademark Licensing and not the MSU Idea Shop. Vendors are responsible for ensuring their own compliance. The MSU Idea Shop reserves the right to remove and return any merchandise deemed out of compliance by General Counsel.