The holiday season is fast-approaching and with everything going on this year I think its so important to not only consider staying home and shopping online for gifts, but to also support small businesses! You really can't beat a handmade, hand designed or created items! There is something so special about supporting someone's dream while being able to buy unique gifts you cant get at your local big-box stores!
Here are a list of small businesses that you can buy some gifts from this season or just some things to treat yourself! Some of these shops I have purchased from myself and loved and others were recommended by some of you!
For the college pal or sports lover in your life!
Kampus Kustoms is owned by Kristina in Chicago and was recommended to me by one of you! She started selling these amazing and unique college tees that she customizes from her thrift finds! I think we can all benefit from a sustainable clothing option and how cute are these for game day?! The best part might be that you can send her a shirt you already have and she can customize it for you! Beyond bleach and tie-dye, Kristin can completely redesign your piece from adding zippers, adding a cute custom cut, or redesigning a flannel! Check her out on Instagram @kampuskustoms to order one or her designs or chat with her about a custom piece for you or a friend!! I might just have to get a custom Texas Tech one for myself!
Meet the owner, Kristina!
"I started my business as a senior in college (last August) when I attended the University of Kentucky. I have always loved to thrift clothing since the pieces are usually super unique and can't be found anywhere else. I started my first corporate job after college in January and was laid off in March at the beginning of the pandemic so I thought I would focus my time and energy onto my business that I started at school. I have always loved sports and in a family of all girls my dad made sure we were always educated about our favorite teams (Cubs, Bears, Bulls, Blackhawks) I am currently in the suburbs of Chicago!" -Kristina
Gift a home decor statement piece for that hard-to-shop for friend!
Another recommendation to me is Tal & Bert! Let me just start by saying my jaw about hit the floor when I saw their Instagram page, their work is s t u n n i n g! This company started just this year and has taken off! They specialize in hand poured concrete work where they take the cracks and turn them into these gorgeous geodes! They have a variety of items like their smaller Mod Planters and even have high-quality soy wood wick candles, a favorite of mine, the sound of a wood wick burning in the winter is unmatched, in my opinion. The best part might be getting to keep the candle vessel after your candle is done and repurpose it for a planter or how cute would it be as a key bowl by your door?! It's such a statement piece that you can keep in your home forever or gift to a sweet friend!
Meet the owners, Ray & Val!
"Tal & Bert was founded in February 2020 by husband & wife duo, Ray & Val Talbert. Their creations combined their love of outdoors, recreational mining, and art..
Tal & Bert is the meeting point of raw natural minerals and industrial concrete. Our designs are made from hand poured concrete that has been casted by hand in small batches. Our work is inspired by the Japanese philosophy of wabi-sabi, finding the beauty in imperfections. We take the breakages in the designs and turn them into stunning geodes." -Tal & Bert
For the wine buddy or coffee lover we all know and love!
Hip Sip Hooray Co. is one I have personally ordered from and can vouge for amazing customer service and high quality pieces! I got the Basic Witch Mug for the spooky season and have my eye on this Good Morning Mug! Hannah is located in Louisiana and brings that southern charm to everything she makes. I can't think of anyone in my life that wouldn't love on of these mugs or wine glasses, it's the perfect gift! From teachers to your best friend, even your mom! Cute and functional, you really can't go wrong! You can order from her Etsy shop, HipSipHoorayCo and find her on Instagram @hipsiphooray.co!
Meet the owner, Hannah!
"Hi friends!! My name is Hannah and Hip Sip Hooray is my baby! I opened up my Etsy shop in the midst of the pandemic/quarantine and haven’t looked back since. I still work full time as an engineer, but having a side hustle during these tough times has kept my spirits high. Hip Sip Hooray was inspired by my love for wine, cutesy sayings and a firm belief that everyday is worth cheers-ing for! My goal is to provide wine glasses and coffee mugs for everyday life, occasion and holiday! Come check out my shop, so we can all cheers together!" -Hannah
A gift for a friend... or maybe your new manicure for the holidays!
Pressed By Mei is relaunching for Black Friday featuring her new hand-painted press-on nails! If you follow me on YouTube you've seen me try a few different brands of press-on's and these might have to be my next ones! They are unique, feminine, one of a kind and just stunning! One unique thing she offers is different size sets! This is great for someone like me that has smaller nails, I always have a few that are just too big on my hands and I think she has solved this problem! Her designs range from rhinestones to gold flakes, even Halloween and holiday themes! You can check out her work now on Instagram @pressedbymei and follow her to make sure you don't miss her big Black Friday Launch!
Meet the owner, Meilani!
"As someone who always believes “when you look good, you feel good”, joining the beauty industry was a no brainer, but I realized after cosmetology school hair wasn’t for me. Nails, that was my passion! Due to personal reasons I’ve had to start and stop the nail business more times than I’d like to admit but I started doing friends nails again two weeks before COVID shutdowns hit and was stuck with all this creativity that had no where to go. So I decided to start a press on line! I saw others doing it and thought it wouldn’t be possible to compete but then sales started to creep in. I used shutdown as an opportunity to work in my art skills and take workshops, watch YouTube videos and just freestyle after just looking at a picture. Once we opened again I started with clients again but press ons were still in process behind the scenes so I decided to officially launch my store and give an easier way for customers to purchase a set they love. Whether it’s for a night out, event, holiday or daily life. I also have cuticle oils in the works, working on real clients showed there is a lack of people using it as they should for nail health. So why not create two items that people love?" -Meilani
A thoughtful handmade gift for your favorite jewelry lover (she's size inclusive!!)
ELJ Collective is another shop I found through y'all on Instagram! These size-inclusive, hand made bracelets are such a great gift idea this season! I love the one where you can add initials or a name, its so personable and would be so cute for a new mom with their baby's initials or name! There are so many options to choose from so if you're shopping for a statement piece or an every day piece, she has you covered! Take a look at all of the stunning pieces she offers, a few of my favorites are the Rose Quartz , this Be You Motivational set and the custom name Black Lava Beads bracelet!
Meet the owner, Erika!
"COVID-19 has affected us all differently. As an unable to work hairstylist, my creative outlet was being squandered away until one day I decided to do something about it. I’ve never been much for hobbies but it’s amazing to me the inspiration I found from other friends who were starting to do other ventures on the side. ELJ Collective was born out of my mom’s house in Maryland while I was quarantining there to get out of my beloved Boston for a bit. Every ounce of my soul was put into these bracelets and it ended up being not only fun, but an incredible stress relief from the crazy world we all find ourselves in! I believe in size inclusivity always and for all things. I accommodate all sizes and love to work on your own custom designs." -Erika
For your scent-loving, eco-friendly, cozy-house lover!
The Craft Candle Co. is a newly launched business selling eco-friendly soy candles and wax melts and y'all... I think this one is going to be BIG! You can almost smell the candles by looking at her gorgeous photos and her packaging is so stunning you don't even need a gift bag! I love adding candles to gift baskets or pairing with a nice wax warmer or cozy blanket for the ultimate comforting gift. She has covered all of my favorite Christmas scents, especially Christmas Pine! *Added to cart* She also has some yummy, unique scents like Coffee House and Apple Strudel, yes please! And they are all dye-free keeping your home chemical-free and smelling amazing!
Meet the owner, Katie!
"Hello my name is Katie Craft! I’m 30 years old and live in Salt Lake City, UT with my husband and dogs. I, like many others, enjoy when my house smells like a bakery, a flower shop, the seaside, fresh clean laundry, and all the holidays. I decided to try my hand at making a candle that I could feel good about burning in my home. It quickly turned into something that I was passionate about and wanted to share my product with others! I love being a small business owner."
For the tea drinker in your life who loves eco-friendly items and all things natural!
This small business was recommended to me by one of their customers! You can find them on Instagram @outwokentea where she shares interesting facts and a behind the scenes look of her business! The owner, Aureal has an amazing story of why she started this earth-friendly business after being in the construction industry! Tea is such a fun and special gift especially because there are so many varieties! You can grab a few and pair them with a cute mug and tea spoon and you have the perfect gift for a friend or family member. Outwokentea also has a gift box that includes a variety of their tea flavors and of course is in biodegradable packaging, true to her spirit and mission to a healthier Earth!
More about the owner, Aureal!
"As a minority woman within the construction industry Aureal has always had a different perspective. A perspective that gave her the will to climb up the ladder within her industry until one day that all changed. She realized that she was a part of the damage from paving roads to being another truck dumping garbage at the endless landfills. After 6 years and being on top of the mountains at the landfill she decided to make a change. A change to challenge people's mentality to create better conscious decisions to impact the environment in a positive way through her brand Outwoken tea. All of her tea is directly sourced from small tea farms in developing countries to support families. Her innovative packaging is zero waste with compostable packaging. In efforts to help with reforestation each purchase plants one tree. To help within her community she has partnered with Plastic Free MKE and Milwaukee River Keepers to keep her community "Green."As a very conscious business owner keep a look out for what's next! "
Little Something Blue (Coupon Code Alert!!)
For you and your stationery lovers, from Christmas cards to recipe cards! (Instant downloads!)
I may be a little biased when it comes to this shop because it's owned by one of my best friends, Amanda! I have personally seen her create this business and build it from the ground up and her work inspires me so much! I love her recipe cards as a Christmas gift and you can pair it with a recipe card holder or a new cookbook! She also has stationery and invitations for weddings, bridal showers, baby showers and even cards to ask your bridesmaids and groomsmen to your bridal party! If you want something custom, check out her designs that you can edit and personalize at home and then get them printed (Staples has same day printing, FYI!) or reach out to her on Etsy for a completely custom design! The gift tags are perfect to customize all of your gift-wrapping this year and she has several Christmas card options to choose from! She's on Instagram @littlesomethingblue (She also has a new-mommy blog, find her there @littlesomethingblog.lbk!)
Use Code LOUISELANE for 10% OFF! (It never expires!!!)
Meet the owner, Amanda!
"Hello! I’m Amanda and I'm the face behind Little Something Blue. I live in Lubbock Texas with my husband Rex, our son Jax and 2 fur babies. I went to Texas Tech University where I got my degree in Interior Design. Wreck ‘em! I have always had a passion for design and creating. I started Little Something Blue in 2017, after designing my own wedding invitations. I truly love designing and getting to be just a tiny little part of some of the happiest times for my clients and their families. I'm always so honored that my shop was chosen for that!" -Amanda
For the handmade art and good vibes lover!
This business is owned by 3 sisters, which I love! There's something so special about family-owned businesses and this one offering hand drawn art prints and magnets plus beautiful and all natural coconut soy prayer candles fits the bill! Their art prints are so vibrant and would be such a cool and unique gift! Buy a few and frame them to gift a friend, who doesnt love colorful home decor?! I also love their prayer candles, specifically the moon and sun, what a cute duo to add to a git basket! I would also add a few matching items into a basket with some slippers and call it the perfect gift!
Meet the Owners, Adriana, Amanda, and Sarah!
“When a worldwide pandemic hit we were suddenly stuck in quarantine. With nothing but time & our own personal careers on hold, Brujaja (brōō ha-ha) was born with the intention to give the world a little taste of what we love. Starting with our first collection featuring original artwork from an age old, beloved Mexican game, Loteria (think bingo but with pictures). From the artwork to the scents & the over all aesthetic, our three personalities are poured into every creation. We hope our collections stir up nostalgia of the Mexican culture we hold near & dear but also introduce it to anyone & everyone.”
Adriana @obscurefoto: "I’m an artist (medium if choice: watercolors) & photographer. I feel fortunate to be able to use my talents in designing art prints & product photography highlighting my Mexican culture for Brujaja. Being part of such a strong group of women has given me the support & confidence to open my very own art shop! Follow the adventures of an artist @rirrom_mirror!"
Amanda @amandaaguacate: "For as long as I can remember I’ve loved to draw, paint & create. But life happens; I made two beautiful babies & became a hairstylist. Brujaja has not only given me an excuse but a reason to pick up my brush again! I am now using my talents to put a spin on Mexican art & the culture I grew up with."
Sarah @sugarlips393: "I’ve worn many hats in my life, from giving educational tours in a museum to baking/catering & currently I’m a licensed esthetician. But the one common thread has always been a love of the arts. With a curiosity about my culture & a love of reading I gained a great appreciation for all types of Mexican art; the mystic folklore & the beautiful folk art. My life long love has given me a wonderful insight to all of Brujaja’s current & future endeavors."
For all of your holiday attire needs!
This shop came highly recommended by a few different followers, and for good reason! How cute are these screen-printed shirts and tea towels? Blair Lamb Designs also offers embroidery and all of her work is unique and festive! While you're gift shopping for others you might as well grab a couple festive items for yourself too, right?! The FaLaLa Sweatshirt is calling my name and the Eat, Drink, Be Merry tea towel is perfect for any gift basket you hand out this season! I also think this Christmas Tree baseball hat is an *add to cart* moment for me! She also offers designs beyond the holidays like this In My Happy Place vacation sweatshirt!
Meet the owner, Blair!
"Hey, I’m Blair! I’m a wife and new mama living in Texas. I started my Etsy shop in 2016 with my husband, who runs a screenprinting and embroidery shop in our small town. I create designs for Etsy and he makes my visions come to life! When I’m not running my shop, I’m most likely blogging (blairblogs.com), vlogging (YouTube.com/c/blairlamb), or taking long walks with my baby and pup!" -Blair
For the newly wed or newly engaged (it's wedding season, y'all!)
I'm blessed to personally know Kelsey, the co-owner of TK Original Treasures which she started with her mom, Tammy! Kelsey is a sorority sister of mine from Texas Tech and opened up this Etsy shop with her mom filled with the perfect gifts for any bride or groom! I personally am a huge fan of gifting an ornament to celebrate all of my friends engagements! Its such a great way to remember the year you said YES and I think any bride-to-be would agree. She also carries these hilarious wine bags which is such a great gift- just add wine! Despite COVID ruining so many weddings this year, I think its so important now more than ever to show your newly wed or newly engaged friends how excited you are for them and how much you love them! Stay home and stay safe, send a cute wedding gift their way!
Meet the owners, Tammy and Kelsey!
"Hi, we are Tammy and Kelsey, a mother daughter duo who love all things sewing and crafts. We started TKOrginal Treasures as a way to bring the joy of hand made gifts back into peoples lives. Everything in our shop, we hand make, from the aprons to the engagement ornaments. We hope to bring a smile to the face of every one of our customers." Tammy & Kelsey
A sweet gift for the sweet-tooth friend (or yourself) this season! (All Vegan + Gluten Free options!)
I don't know about y'all, but I'm already drooling at these cookies!! These are vegan and ship nationwide in the US! Some people are so hard to shop for, maybe they don't like material things, maybe they have everything they want and need, but cookies might be the perfect gift for that hard-to-shop-for person in your life! They have some amazing flavors to choose from like chocolate chip smores, marble fudge, and birthday cake! Maya's cookies also offers gluten free options so truly they have something for everyone! If you want something festive check out their Holiday Collection with the cutest gingerbread!
Meet the owner, Maya!
"Founded in 2015 by Maya Madsen, Maya’s Cookies is quickly becoming America’s #1 Black-Owned Gourmet Vegan Cookie Company. As a vegan with a sweet tooth, she had not been able to find that perfectly delicious, soft-baked gourmet vegan cookie, so she spent years crafting her award-winning and crowd-pleasing recipes. From the classic to unique and forward-thinking flavors such as “Chocolate Chip S’mores” and “Marble Fudge”, every flavor has a story grounded in Maya’s travels, memories, and experiences. Alongside providing the highest quality product that appeals to everyone, Maya’s Cookies is committed to superior customer service and community engagement, with a focus on youth and underserved communities. Maya’s Cookies ships nationwide— simply order as a treat for yourself or as a gift at mayascookies.com. Learn more about Maya’s Cookies and share the love on their Instagram (@mayascookiessandiego), Facebook (Maya’s Cookies), and Twitter (@MayasCookies) pages." -Maya's Cookies
Thanks for checking out this small business gift guide! If you have suggestions on more small businesses to shop from this season send them my way on instagram @im_Louiselane I could even create a part 2 to this blog post! If you have a friend looking to get organized in the new year or someone who just loves planning, check out my shop page for my meal planners and notepads plus some extra cute stuff to turn it into a whole gift!