Did you know that Wichita had it's very own Hundred Acre Wood? The locally owned and operated gift shop, which was named after the home of Winnie the Pooh, features over 6,000 square feet of shopping fun, including a whole room dedicated to Christmas that’s open year-round. Though you won't see much of the silly old bear himself at the shop, you're sure to find some great, local gifts.
“A lot of stuff that we have in here, no one else in Wichita has it. We make big strides to not be like everybody else,” said Toni Ashley, the shop’s owner.
The store, which originally opened about 30 years ago, was called the Teddy Bear Shop, and it sold only teddy bears. With time it became the Hundred Acre Wood, increasing its inventory. Since acquiring the property in 2003, Ashley has helped the Hundred Acre Wood to grow, expanding the one room store into what is now a fully-stocked, six-room gift shop.
“We still have teddy bears,” Ashley said, “but we also have decorations, wall hangings and jewelry.”
Ashley began her journey as a local business owner in 1995, when she and her two sisters opened up an antique craft shop called Out of the Attic in Oldtown. After just seven years, the shop relocated as a result of the renovation of Eaton Square. From there, Ashley moved to the Hundred Acre Wood gift shop.
Though much of the shop’s inventory is permanent stock, roughly one-third of the Hundred Acre Wood is filled with the works of local crafters who have rented space in the shop to set up their displays. This allows the shop to carry a wide variety of one-of a kind items as well as pieces from collections like Jim Shore.
The Hundred Acre Wood also highlights collegiate items, Boyd’s bears, beautiful tea sets, Webkinz, and much more. Many of the products are even displayed on some of the original antiques from Out of the Attic.
Though the shop’s six rooms are lined wall-to-wall with beautiful wares, you won’t find any two items the same.
“I usually ask what they (those who wish to rent space) have, because, like Betty has doilies, so I don’t let them bring in their doilies because that’s competition against Betty, and because I don’t want the same things,” Ashley said. “That’s what keeps it interesting.” Ashley accepts only the best quality of items, ensuring that the Hundred Acre Wood provides an upscale shopping experience.
Located just a block off of I-35 at 2407 E. Harry, the Hundred Acre Wood is easy to find. The opportune location of the Hundred Acre Wood brings in a wide variety of first-time customers who are met with surprise when they enter the store. Often, it’s the shop’s sheer size that comes as a shock, but this isn’t always the case.
“What I love is when men walk in here and ask where the lumber’s at. They think we’re a wood shop,” Ashley said.
If you’re looking for the perfect gift, stop by the Wichita’s Hundred Acre Wood.