A Small Business Gift Guide from Around the World
At The Attic we’ve always prided ourselves on our wanderlust, embracing adventures near and far, collecting unique treasures along the way. But there’s nothing like home, whether by birth or the privilege of choice, and the fun of our varied environments is searching out the treasures that tie us further to these places. Poring over local antique or book shops or discovering a new small business are joys to be shared. Care packages, holiday gifts, personal incentives... no matter your need, members of The Attic list their favorite sources for home grown goods.
Eliza Campbell: London, England
At this time of year I love popping into Daunt Books on Marylebone Highstreet. It’s a lovely nook in one of the loveliest parts of London at any time of year but at Christmas the oak galleries and skylights seem at home. It’s a great place to pick up books (obviously) but they also sell rather expensive but incredibly beautiful wrapping paper.
If you’re looking for a book to gift this year I would fully recommend My Year if Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh. Ever since I read it at the end of summer it’s been the book most of my friends (both online and in my personal life) ask me about. It’s definitely a conversation starter and a great book to compare notes, thoughts, and feelings on.
M. A. McCuen: Omaha, Nebraska (USA)
This is one of my favorite places to shop for gifts in Omaha. They sell ethically made items with a feminist message. Some of my favorite items are their iconic "Girls Support Girls" sweatshirt, this cute feminist to-do list, and this very relatable pin. What I really love about this shop though, is that it is feminist in all it does. It is totally female-run and founded by a a stylist and a member of the Nebraska Legislature. Hello Holiday donates thousands of dollars to vulnerable women such as immigrants, refugees, and homeless women. I love that their company builds up women both in their products and in their community! You can also find them on Instagram!
Mishka Hoosen: Cape Town, South Africa
Since many of us are traveling during the holidays I can think of no better stocking-stuffer than this gem from South African perfumery House of Gozdawa. Each of their perfumes are made from natural oils and essences, and most of them are sourced from within South Africa. This is a particularly lovely unisex Eau de Cologne, combining the sweetness of Mandarin with the bracing freshness of Cape Rosemary to evoke the air in the Cape mountains just after the rain (and it does just that, if you ever feel like traveling through scent). It's a wonderful and travel-friendly scent to use to freshen up while traveling, whether you spritz some on after getting off a plane or use it to freshen your clothes when you unpack.
This linen duster (in both Natural and Black) is basically the staple of my everyday uniform, no matter the season. Handmade from linen, it instantly ties together any outfit, adding layering and interest while still being breathable and comfortable. It also has generous hidden pockets while maintaining a sleek and elegant silhouette, and it doesn't hurt one bit that the black version of it makes you low-key look like a wizard (these are the priorities I have when getting dressed). All of Hannah Lavery's pieces are locally and ethically made, and they're one of my favorite local designers for clothes that are effortlessly put-together and elegant.
Olivia Gündüz-Willemin: Geneva, Switzerland
Les Petits Faiseurs
I’ve been discovering candles over the past few weeks, and I was very happy to find Les Petits Faiseurs here in Geneva. Their candles are all natural and packed in all recyclable or reusable materials and are aesthetic. Their “orange cannelle” candle reminds me of childhood winters spent in Europe, visiting my mom – especially a first, snowy Christmas in Prague where I discovered orange as a truly Christmassy thing. One of my mom’s colleagues brought us a mini Christmas tree hung with dried orange slices and cinnamon sticks, and this candle is basically that. As a bonus, if you order from Les Petits Faiseurs from now until December 23rd, you can get 20% off your order with the code OLIVIA20.
Cuppin’s is another Geneva/Lausanne gem. I started going to them when we were searching for a baker that would make a multi-tear, buttercream cake for our wedding this summer, and Cuppin’s more than came through (thank you, Caroline!). They’re known for their cupcakes, and sure enough, that’s why my grandmother and I often go there, but they also have a curated shop at their Geneva location, full of beautiful notebooks, accessories, and delicate jewellery. It’s a wonderful place to go to have something sweet and browse for a last minute gift. They also have a shop in Lausanne that was recently redecorated!
Raquel Reyes: Savannah, Georgia (USA)
Nourish has been my eco-friendly body care steady for as long as I’ve lived in Savannah. Year-round I rely on their handmade soaps and essential oils for self care (their Don’t Bug Me! soap is a godsend in the summertime) and cozy candles to warm my home. Their Limited Edition Georgia Christmas Soy Candle is fairly well known and us locals excitedly await its release every year.
Paris Market is every bit as magical as online features and Jamie Beck make it out to be. I can’t resist strolling through anytime I’m within walking distance of this Savannah institution, picking up small gifts and unique finds I can’t get anywhere else. Owner Paula sources vintage finds abroad and vintage-inspired goods locally, and I adore stopping in for anything from cards and stationary to a frozen hot chocolate.
Atlanta, Georgia (USA): A dear friend and fellow SCAD alum of Raquel’s, Jamie Bourgeois hand prints, sews, and dyes her gorgeous silk/cotton scarves using natural dyes in her personal studio. Her Prairie series matches the floral wallpaper motif we’ve been living for all year.
San Francisco, California (USA): First brought to our attention by Lee, Blue Bottle Coffee delivers now! Their small batch roasts make the perfect gift for any coffee lover looking to enjoy a bit of gourmet at home, and they've got coffee makers, tools, and mugs to boot.
Brooklyn, New York (USA): In God We Trust is a group favorite; this female-owned shop carries interesting gifts and apparel all designed and made in New York. Their namesake jewelry collection features customizable necklaces perfect for the one of a kind gift-getter in your life.
Dublin, Ireland: Lauren’s favorite local stops are bookshops, whether to browse or to pick up gifts for others. You can find all of her favourites in her Dublin bookshop guide from last year.
Paris, France: Similarly, Olivia loves her independent bookshops and most frequently gets to visit them in Paris. You can find her favorites in her similar Paris guide.