Every year when it comes to buying gifts for Christmas, I always, always, think, “go to a small business” and try to support someone who is local, a maker, an entrepreneur etc. and find something unique for those on my list. And honestly, most years I have made SOME purchases at boutiques and shops, but I eventually ended up doing most of my Christmas shopping at a big box store (mostly because of a lack of time). This year, I have connected with so many wonderful business people, that I know I can tackle many on my Christmas gift list by shopping with these local ladies…and I thought I’d share it with you!
In all truth, I have either been to these stores personally or know the owners and see all their hard work, wonderful offerings, creative ideas, and amazing services and didn't want to just keep it to myself! This Christmas Shopping post is one of those that you want to add to your bookmarks and shop over and over because what they have is not just great around the holidays, but all the year through! I encourage you to like their pages, follow them on Instagram, stop at their stores because they are JUST. THAT. GOOD! All the opinions I share are my own, and there are no affiliate links in this post. Just a fantastic list of amazing businesses that I highly recommend adding to your Christmas Shopping go-to list—especially for those of you where it is important to #shoplocalHamilton.
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In this roundup, I have asked each business to give us an idea of who they are, and also give an overview of what they offer. Then I put together some images that I am hoping will tease and tempt…and inspire you to make some creative choices in your gift giving this year and support these local businesses by purchasing their products or services.
So, let’s dive in to the 2019 Hamilton Shop-Local Christmas Shopping Guide. To see the 2017 Guide, check out this post too!
This Ancaster shop is not just a great place to stop and have a bite to eat, but Diana offers so many products and services that you can’t find just anywhere! If you have a loose-leaf tea lover on your list you HAVE to stop in as this is one of her specialties! They also cook delicious homemade style food…so why not consider giving someone the gift card of a prepared meal? Any busy family –including mine--would appreciate not having to cook and also not having to resort to a fast-food option. These are healthy, delicious, hot, comfort foods--just like Mom…Nonna…Gigi…Zia…Nana or “insert-wonderful-cook-here” makes! Gift baskets with her products can be made to order as well….AND she offers Keto friendly and Vegan products too!
Some Gift Ideas:
Gift Baskets starting at $25 (Teas and Jams) – they can also be customized with Greeting cards!
Stocking stuffers under $10 (teas, infusers, jams)
Gift Certificates for family dinners - cooked and delivered warm to anyone in Hamilton! Any customized amount, starting at $25
From Diana at Andybela:
Andybela eaTEAry is a space where people can learn about Romanian culture and food traditions! I import directly from small producers in Romania. I focus on gourmet food items, especially on products that have won numerous European awards! I also make my own line of tea blends as I have a biochemistry background and love playing with various plants and aromas! My mom cooks traditional Romanian foods, so people can order cabbage rolls, stuffed peppers, shepherd pies, apple strudels, chocolate chip cookies, keto breads and more!
Instagram: Andybela eaTEAry and Andybela_gifts
Sidenote Ladies Boutique
If fashion is your passion, then you have to make Sidenote one of your go-to shops! Shannon offers a variety of fashion pieces in her shop and Services that can help those who feel challenged in this area. She sources gently used clothing, purses, shoes & accessories and offers them at affordable prices—many are designer-label pieces or brand new with tags. This isn’t a thrift store, it is boutique level stuff! She also offers items online that can be shipped right to you. Personal shopping, Branding styling, closet and outfit arranging, and even “Girl’s Nite In” are some fun and unique offerings you can give to your sister, best friend, or even yourself! She also has gift certificates for you to request from your significant other…so add Sidenote Ladies Boutique to your wish list...or I mush-check-this-out-now-list—you won’t be disappointed!
Some great gift items and or options would be blanket scarves, pompom hats (brand new with tags), jewelry, purses and gift certificates which can be used for boutique items or fashion services!
From Shannon at Sidenote:
Our Boutique is not just an average boutique. It is a little hidden gem with all kinds of fabulous finds that won't break the bank. We also offer wardrobe consultations: where we come into your living space and remix and match what you currently own and create new outfits, reorganize your closet and leave tags on your hangers for reminders of what and how to pair your items.
Styling sessions: Have an event? Professional branding shoot? …and you are not sure what to wear? Let our stylist help you with that!
Personal Shopping: Are you that person that either dislikes shopping or finds it overwhelming? Or perhaps you are always buying items that are very similar-- let our stylist Shop with or for you!
And finally, our private shopping parties: Grab your ladies and come on down book out the space, sip on wine and try on all the clothes and shop to your hearts content!
I found out about this store on James St. N from a previous client…and I am so glad she told me about it! Offering vintage furniture, candles, many decorative items, wall signs that you can purchase in-store or have custom made, it is always a sweet treat whenever I stop in! They also carry jewelry made by local artisans, and many unique pieces. This retail store is one of my go-to’s for Christmas Shopping (and for gifts any time of year) --I have made purchases there every year at Holiday time!
AND (da, da, daaaaa) …this year, they have opened a pop-up shop at Limeridge mall!!! Located very close to H&M, tucked right beside Urban Behavior, you have to MAKE SURE when you are at the mall doing your Christmas shopping to stop by and visit!!! It truly is a beautiful store with beautiful items, and you will be sure to check some gifts off of your list!
Holiday Ornaments starting at only $4, Wall Signs starting at $25;
Macrame Plant holders with a plant: $45, Necklaces start at $22, but there are also earrings, sunglasses, and keychains too!
From Amy at Vintage Charm:
Vintage Charm re-purposes old neglected pieces of furniture creating beautiful refreshed pieces for your home. We have a curated selection of vintage inspired home decor, jewelry, candles, hardware, gift items and wall art. Where possible we source locally made or fair-trade products. In addition to that we stock Revive Paint and a selection of paint accessories to help you with your own DIY refinishing projects.
We do offer online shopping at www.vintagecharmhome.com with the availability to pickup in store or we ship across the country. We currently are running a popup shop until the end of December at Limeridge. The James Street location is open 6 days a week now and closed on Mondays.
Laura’s Cupcake Company
I don’t know about you, but I have a love-hate relationship with Christmas baking! The part I love is the eating, the part I am not so good at is finding the time, gathering ingredients, shopping for everything so you are ready, etc., etc.! I cannot help but think it would be great to have some homemade options to give away and take the pressure off a bit…enter Laura’s Cupcake Company! Obviously, she does more than cupcakes, and everything she does looks and tastes delicious! So why not pick up a dozen (or several) of these delectable treats for your work party, to give to neighbors, bring to a pot-luck or even add to teacher gifts? I am certain the recipient will be so glad you did!!!
Christmas cookies (per dozen):
Shortbread : $10.50 Whipped shortbread : $10.50 Chocolate chip Carmel shortbread $12.50
Gingerbread $10.50, Sugar cookies $12.00, Lemon twist $11.50
Empire / Belgium $13.50, Almond cherry balls $11.50, Peppermint snowballs $11.50
Eggnog $11.50, Thumbprints $12.50, Chocolate cherry drops $12.50
Hot chocolate cookies $11.50
Cupcakes $19 -$23 per dozen
New flavours in time for Christmas! Peppermint Eggnog Gingerbread Chocolate Irish cream Hot coco Expresso
From Laura at Laura’s Cupcake Company:
Simply delicious gourmet cupcakes, cookies, cakes and more. Laura caters to all dietary needs including gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, keto which is perfect for all of your family functions.
(Not done yet, but almost complete! )
One of the things I am growing more and more conscious about is waste…and how much of it we have here in North America!!! I have been purposeful at reducing not only what we buy, but also where, and using what I have more and more. Earthology is a company that will help you minimize waste—especially when it comes to lunches and food storage. These items would be fantastic in any home, but especially if you are lunch-packer and want to reduce how many baggies, and the amount of plastic wrap you use; The food covers and produce bags will also help your food last longer…now that’s a win-win for any family! Be sure to check out their website and add these amazing items to your Christmas shopping gift list… I know I am!
Beeswax Food Wrap 5 Pack Variety Pack: $25
Vegan Foodwrap Variety Pack: $35
Beeswax Food Wrap Produce Bags: $18
From Sarah & Robyn at Earthology:
Earthology Wraps make the perfect sustainable holiday gift you can feel good about giving. Earthology food wraps are made with all-natural ingredients, they are reusable, washable and completely compostable. The also keep foods fresh longer, reducing household food waste. To use them, simply wrap around foods, dishware or fold into snack bags with just a little warmth from your hands. It's no surprise that they are quickly becoming the new kitchen essential.
Earthology Wraps are the perfect eco-friendly alternative to single use plastic. Handcrafted from the finest ingredients (100% GOTS certified organic cotton, sustainable harvested Canadian beeswax, organic jojoba oil as well as coniferous tree resin from Quebec), their quality is beyond compare.
Earthology was founded in 2017 by Sarah Shearing and and Robyn Menzies, two moms looking for a a greener, toxic free food storage solution for sending snacks to school.
Email: [email protected]
Christa By Design
Christa is a maker located in the Haldimand area, that has some really cool items available on her website, and also in her pop-up shop in Dunnville. This is where personalization can be taken to a whole new level, and gifts become treasures. Photo canvases, Custom signs, Moment in Time Maps, as well as mugs, cushions, and so much more are available for purchase. I know I am always conscious to purchase gifts that will have some meaning and will truly make someone feel special and loved…if that is you too, then you NEED to check out this website soon and get your orders in (Custom Order deadline is Dec. 10th)!
Custom Canvas Prints
Moment in Time: A map of the stars to commemorate a special occasion or event—it is one of her most popular sellers.
Coconut wax candles with wood wicks and essential oils (eco friendly, safe, no chemicals and very luxurious feel)
8x10 prints (quick and simple art to hang/frame/gift)
Laser engraved ornaments (can be customized and a thoughtful gift!)
Wood letter boards (modern home decor with a twist)
Mugs (can be customized to your taste, microwave and dishwasher safe!)
USB wax warmer (her favourite! It is a lightbulb free warmer with a silicone holder at the top to melt scented soy wax melts and when you are finished, and the wax is solid. You can take it out easily instead of scraping it out making a mess)
From Christa at Crista by Design:
We have many items available online, but this year are also offering a Christmas/Holiday pop up shop with additional items like ornaments, stockings and provide workshops (called Home for Christmas).
Christa By Design also offers design services including logos, social media branding/posts, wedding and event invites.
If you are seeking customized keepsakes and products for babies and children, visit Mark it With an M- A business by Christa By Design that focuses on customized keepsakes, decor and lifestyle products for littles. Lots of personalized options to make Christmas extra special!
Having made the switch earlier this year to a Gluten & Dairy free diet, the thing I missed most (at first) was sweets... I love my afternoon treat of a cookie (or chocolate) with my coffee, and at first it felt like I couldn’t find anything! Then I tried Marci’s items and instantly found what was missing. Brownies, several varieties of cookies & bites, muffin mixes and more, I now know exactly where to go to satisfy my afternoon cravings; and because I am always challenged for time, the mixes are a great alternative to doing everything from scratch. These mixes and baked good can make a great gift for someone with challenging dietary issues, but are so good, I suggest giving them out to everyone; check out her website and check a few items off your Christmas shopping list!
Mixes: from $8-$15/pkg
Pan sized baked goods: From $15-$30/pkg
Dog Treats: $12/pkg
…and so much more!
From Marci at Marci’s Bakery:
We desire to feed you well every day. We make tasty, nutritious, food that tastes great & improves overall health.
At Marci’s Bakery we know deep down, everyone wants to eat healthy & provide healthier options for their families, including pets. We don’t always have time to "do the work". Adding to this challenge, many of us have food allergies, sensitivities, restrictions. EVERYONE should be able to enjoy beautiful, healthy food, worry-free. Everyone wins when we're fueled well; we're happier, satisfied, energetic, & ready to serve.
Marci's Bakery creates delicious, nutrient-rich recipes that avoid most known food allergens.
We test our cuisine on everyone (with & without food allergies), so that all will enjoy our creations. I personally invite you to "jump on board" with us! (You'll be so healthy, jumping won't be an issue!
Graham & Brooks
This shop located in Dundas is full of little treasures! They carry vintage suitcases & architectural salvage pieces, local art, wool tartan throws that are just gorgeous, not to mention fun men’s grooming supplies, handmade brooms & brushes, beautiful bedding & cushions…honestly, this store is like eye candy for my decor-loving soul. I absolutely love to browse in here and usually go through the store at least twice to make sure I didn’t miss anything! I have sourced unique pieces for clients, as well as my own home, and highly recommend a visit! Need a housewarming gift? Secret Santa? Something for a Pet-lover? Hard to buy for person? …THIS is the place you will find that perfect gift!!! If you don't have the 'Christmas Spirit' in you yet, then doing your Christmas shopping here will put you in the mood as soon as you walk in the door.
PS...The pictures below do not do it justice...the store is GORGEOUS and has so many great things you just have to see for yourself!
Wreaths (seasonal offerings always available)..see cover shot
Ornaments & Stockings
Unique Home Décor pieces
A local business with unique furniture, accessories and gifts - from shabby-chic to re-purposed industrial. We have gathered an assortment of furniture, accessories and collections for your home, garden and cottage. Featuring re-purposed and renewed in categories such as Vintage Canadian, Industrial and Rustic. With a focus on local sourcing, our style inspiration comes from all over the globe. Graham & Brooks is a beautiful combination of old and new where quality and service are the standard.
Sweet Villa Creations
I don’t know anyone who doesn’t appreciate a beautiful candle, and these locally made candles are beautifully packaged, so you hardly have to do a thing! 100 % Soy Wax Candles, these beauties are Hand-poured and there are many scents to choose from: Warm Vanilla, Fresh Strawberry, Orange Dreamsicle, Peaches & Cream, Roasted Coffee, Hawaiian Island, Coco~Latte & Lemongrass…and unscented is also available as well. Tea lites, or candles in various sizes are available so if you have a candle lover on your list, be sure to check out these well priced creations!!
Hostess, teachers, client gifts, personal use or, stocking stuffers…candles always make a great gift!
From Natalia at Sweet Villa Creations:
At Sweet Villa Creations you can find a variety of products that are great gift options for any occasion. We are always striving to innovate, create and design unique products with beautiful packaging and presentation.
We offer hand poured Soy Wax Candles, Wooden Boxes that can be reused for home decor, Gift sets that include our products and local handmade products (as we love supporting local makers), Planters, Succulents, Party favours Events Decor & more.
So, there you have it! Lots of new places to see, products to try, and unique services to give you some great Christmas Shopping ideas! As a small business owner myself, I value the businesses in our great city of Hamilton and am making a conscious choice as a person and as a business to do what I can to boost the local economy. So, lets #shoplocalHamilton and support all the small businesses in our city while offering the precious people in our lives gifts from the heart.
Happy Christmas Shopping everyone!!!