In a world filled with retail giants and online marketplaces, it’s easy to overlook the importance of shopping small. However, this holiday season, we encourage you to think twice before hitting that “Add to Cart” button on a corporate website. Shopping small isn’t just about finding unique and personalized gifts; it’s about making a significant impact on local communities and fostering a sense of togetherness during this festive season.
Boosting Local Economies: When you shop at small businesses, your dollars go directly into the pockets of local entrepreneurs. These businesses often invest their earnings back into the community, creating jobs and helping to stimulate economic growth.
Unique Finds: Small businesses offer a treasure trove of one-of-a-kind items you won’t find in big-box stores. Whether it’s handcrafted jewelry, artisanal chocolates, or custom-made home decor, you’re sure to discover special gifts that reflect thoughtfulness and care.
Personalized Service: Small businesses often provide personalized and attentive customer service. You’re more likely to receive expert advice, tailored recommendations, and a warm, friendly atmosphere when you shop small.
Environmental Impact: Local shops often have a smaller carbon footprint compared to large corporations, as they tend to source products locally and reduce transportation-related emissions.
Preserving Tradition: Many small businesses uphold time-honored traditions and crafts that might otherwise be lost in the age of mass production. By supporting them, you help preserve cultural heritage and craftsmanship.
Community Connection: Small businesses are the heart and soul of neighborhoods. By shopping at these establishments, you’re investing in the fabric of your community, helping to create vibrant, thriving local hubs.
Fulfilling Dreams: Behind every small business is a passionate entrepreneur who has poured their heart and soul into their endeavor. By patronizing their businesses, you’re supporting their dreams and ambitions.
Job Creation: Small businesses are significant job creators. By choosing to shop small, you’re contributing to the livelihoods of your fellow community members and fostering a more prosperous society.
Now that we’ve emphasized the importance of shopping small this holiday season, here’s a list of small businesses you can consider supporting:
THATCHER’S GOURMET POPCORN
Thatcher’s Gourmet Pop-corn is a family-owned local business that started in 1983 as a small retail store in San Francisco. They have been acknowledged as one of the best popcorn companies in the U.S. by major Gourmet and Specialty Food magazines, as well as prestigious newspapers such as The New York Times!
visit: 705 Bliss Avenue, Pittsburg, CA 94565
OAKTOWN SPICE SHOP
Oaktown Spice Shop is a joyful stop on the errand routine. Customers can step into a beautiful, nostalgic and aromatic world, smell their way through glass jars of spices, have a conversation about their next meal with the staff, and find inspiration for their cooking. They focus on sourcing the absolute best-tasting version of each individual spice that we can find, which entails working with hundreds of different importers. They grind spices ourselves, in their shop, every week or two. This means the ground spices at Oaktown are bursting with flavor and are far fresher than those found elsewhere.
Their shops are located in Oakland, California’s Grand Lake neighborhood and on Solano Avenue in Albany, California and products can also be purchased from their website.
visit: 546 Grand Ave, Oakland, CA 94610 | 1224 Solano Ave, Albany, CA 94706 | 2132 Fillmore St, San Francisco, CA 94115
The act of gifting a book for the holidays is like presenting a portal to another world, a passport to adventure, or a key to knowledge. It’s a thoughtful gesture that goes beyond the material, offering the recipient the opportunity to explore new realms, gain insights, or simply find solace within the pages. Whether it’s a classic novel that has stood the test of time, a captivating memoir that resonates with their experiences, or a beautifully illustrated children’s book that sparks imagination, a book gift is a timeless and personal way to share the joy of reading and the magic of storytelling during the holiday season.
visit: 1625 2nd St. Napa, CA 94559
LES LUNES WINE
Les Lunes Wine grows wines that pay respect to the great wines of California’s past. They do very little in the cellar because we spend time in our vineyards. Proper pruning, precise suckering, well-timed treatments and thoughtful weed management let them minimize the pesticide inputs in the vineyards.
Our goal year in and year out is to bring you a unique taste of the distinct times and places which we love and tend. The care that we bring through the entire winegrowing process shines through into the final product. Our wines are balanced in their youth, but the care we invest in the winegrowing will continue to reverberate in your cellar for years to come.
General Store features a carefully curated mix of clothing, household items, books, jewelry and other small treasures from local California artisans. An arbiter of beautifully well-imagined works from the creative minds of many inspiring craftsmen, The General Store brings thoughtful, functional design to our local community and abroad. They have locations in San Francisco and Los Angeles. In keeping with the community and landscape in mind, the San Francisco store features a warm and welcoming garden gathering space. Their Venice location’s ample interior volume will hold a place in your imagination.
visit: 4035 Judah Street SF, CA 94122 | 1801 Lincoln Blvd. Venice, CA 90291
Another favorite one stop shop of ours is Therapy Stores. They provide something for everyone: jewelry, accessories, housewares, books, games, kids & baby clothes, bath & beauty products, and gift cards.
visit: Stores are located throughout the Bay Area, including SF, Oakland, Livermore, Mountain View, Folsom, and more. They also have a shop in Portland, OR.
EO Products relies on decades of manufacturing plant-based body care products to guide them in choosing safe, natural, organic, and sustainably-farmed ingredients. Their two brands, EO and Everyone, both offer soothing pure essential oils blended in safe, effective natural products. EO helps you create meditative moments of self-care through aromatherapy. Perfect gift for those in need of some self-care during these tumultuous times.
visit: you can find EO products in a variety of retail stores, but they do not have a storefront.
A perfect gift for your coffee loving loved one. Ritual Coffee sources their coffee from smallholder farmers and set the highest standard for quality and sustainable sourcing in the industry. They also offer essential brew tools and some cool merch.
ESQUELETO features a thoughtfully edited selection of handcrafted fine jewelry, artwork, and objects. With a commitment to ethical sourcing, sustainable practices, and supporting creative and talented independent designers and makers, ESQUELETO is a destination for the most unique fine jewelry, presented in our casual, light-filled boutiques. Their expert team can guide you through every purchase, whether it’s selecting a special gift, or a new addition to your personal collection, or a beautiful artwork to accent your home.
visit: Stores in Oakland, Los Feliz, Echo Park, and NYC. Appointments are necessary.
High-quality linen means endless opportunities for a meaningful, and beautiful gift. Rough Linen’s spirit originates with the story of a family heirloom —homespun linen from a stone cottage in Scotland, came to light four generations later. Together with a team of in-house sewers, they bring a love for timeless linen to a world that can use what it stands for – strength, continuity, and craft. Made to be lived with — and loved.
visit: Only available through their website
Sports Basement has everything a trailblazing outdoor person would want AND MORE! Their buying team sources the best product from top brands, and scores some pretty sweet deals along the way. They know what to look for in every product they’re choosing because they use it themselves when they’re adventuring outdoors. Their experience and knowledge bring us carefully curated gear that we know customers want and will enjoy using.
This holiday season, let’s make a conscious effort to shop small and create a positive impact on our communities. By doing so, we can spread joy, support dreams, and make the world a better place, one small business at a time.