Well would you believe it; silly season is nearly upon us once more!
I shared my musings on the Art of Gifting last Christmas, and will be taking just as much care with my gift-giving this time around. Now more than ever I feel it’s important to eschew the rampant consumerism of Black Friday and focus support and attention on our local independent boutiques, and the abundance of talented designer makers around us, who pour their hearts and souls into their businesses every day, but are often struggling to keep their heads above water and make ends meet whilst pursuing their passions.
Sarah Hamilton’s Just a Card campaign has been on my radar since it first launched via Twitter a few years back. The campaign message is simple: that all purchases however small, even ‘just a card’, are vital to the survival of small businesses. I’ve been delighted to discover so many wonderful independent lifestyle stores in Manchester this past year, and it’s likely you’ll have a few little delights tucked away in your hometown too, helping to showcase local creativity and add character and soul to the community. I urge you to seek them out and pop in for a browse and a natter – because one thing all independents have in common is a friendly, knowledgeable and passionate shopkeeper waiting to welcome you with open arms. You don’t get that kind of festive cheer in the high street chains!
These small boutiques will be the perfect place to pick up a few little stocking fillers, or Secret Santa gifts for colleagues at work. I’ve rounded up a few little delights from my favourite online boutiques, run by lovely people not faceless corporations, including single-origin chocolate handcrafted in an old furniture maker’s workshop in the back streets of Bethnal Green, artisan soap handcrafted in small batches in Manchester using natural ingredients, and natural soya wax candles hand-poured in Wales by people with learning disabilities..
STOCKING FILLERS, UNDER £10
Click on the images below to shop. Some links are affiliate.
Lead image: Ferm Living