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WE <3 LOCAL: Gift Guide

Looking to shop local in Calgary this holiday season? We've got a whole lot of suggestions of places you can buy from this holiday season! Stay tuned for another post coming soon with some reasons why you should be keeping your dollars as local as possible.

It's getting easier to shop small, even from the comfort of your home! Many shops have started up online stores, or take orders through their social media or email. And small businesses really need your support, now more than ever! Some small businesses depend on holiday sales to make it through the year.

For our guides, we are trying to focus on women, BIPOC and LGBTQ+ owned businesses as much as possible. As we're based in Calgary, AB on Treaty 7 land, we are mostly showcasing #YYC businesses, but also have some from western Canada.

A few things we wanted to mention about shopping local:

  1. Give ample time for your order to be prepared and shipped! A lot of small businesses and makers are one-person-shows, and are trying their best to get your order out on time. Be patient!

  2. If you're ordering a little late (it happens.... to most of us....), consider local pick up. Lots of makers and small businesses have set up curb-side pick up to facilitate sales to local shoppers. You can get your gift secured right away, and not have to worry about the postal service.

  3. Once an order is shipped, it's out of the businesses hands! If it's taking a long time, there's basically nothing the business can do about it. Be patient.

  4. Our postal service is ESPECIALLY slow this year. Remember also that our local postal workers and distribution centres are trying their hardest too!

  5. If you are worried about getting a product on time, you can also consider gift cards! A lot of local businesses can make you a gift card to their online store and send it via email. Gift cards are also a great idea if you have NO idea what to get at a business, but know you want to support them.

Now let's get to the gift guide!

Did you know that if you can't find a specific book on a store's online shop or at their brick-and-mortar location, you can probably make a request for them to bring it in? It's a good idea to get thinking about that in advance as it may take a little bit for the book to arrive with all the holiday shipping craziness!⁠⠀

  1. @owlsnestbooks: These guys are located in Britannia, and have been there for over 40 years! ⁠⠀

  2. @shelflifebooks: These guys have an amazing selection, and their curated tables have tons of great picks for all kinds of people.⁠

  3. @suestokvel: Highlighting the work of BIPOC writers who are often excluded from the canon, they curate an amazing selection of books.⁠⠀

  4. @siglabooks: This is the go-to in Calgary for odd and obscure books.⁠⠀

  5. @pagesbooks: Located in the beautiful Kensington neighbourhood, this spot offers all the books you could want and super great staff.⁠⠀

Our city is FULL of amazing small makers and businesses that make products that fill our homes with beauty and delight. If you're looking for gifts for the nester in your life, take a look through these amazing businesses! ⁠

  1. @fieldkitstudio: All things that smell good, handmade and focusing on sustainable and quality materials.⁠⠀

  2. @the_sunroom_plants: If your loved one is a plant lover, order them something beautiful through Sunroom Plant's online store.⁠⠀

  3. @steelinghome: This 17th ave shop is FULL of treasures and surprises. We could spend hours in here. ⁠⠀

  4. @marlowfloralworks: This cute little shop has all kinds of beautiful plants, flowers and planters for any season! Just opened a new location too: @marlowtheinn.

  5. @thedustysparrow: Soy candles that are 100% paraben and phthalate free, made in Drayton Valley.⁠⠀

  6. @homeecarts: This fibre artist is just getting started, but already has some very beautiful work up for sale on their online shop!⁠⠀

  7. @inspiratiworld: Amazing selection of linens, tea towels, pillows and bedding and so much more. ⁠⠀

  8. @karibusoaps: Passionate about creating unique handmade soap bars using locally sourced natural ingredients!⁠⠀

  9. @sedgecocandles: Handcrafted soy candles from Calgary! Phthalate+paraffin free, with lead free wooden wicks.⁠⠀

  10. @apothicbotanist: Bath and body works using plants and plant magic!⁠⠀

  11. @thelatenightpillowcompany: Made in Chestermere, and super cute. They can even make you a custom pillow!⁠⠀

Know someone who is expecting soon, or has kids? Calgary has so many amazing little shops and makers with unique gift ideas for kids. From teethers to toys, these business's and makers have got you covered.⁠⠀

  1. @growing.co_kids: This shop, located in the @calgaryfarmersmarket, and has a whole bunch of ethical, low waste and sustainable kids goods.⁠⠀

  2. They've got upscale, resale, and new clothing for youngsters, and they know how to put the cutest outfits together!⁠⠀

  3. This lovely business makes adorable baby and kids jewelry. Seriously: so cute. ⁠⠀

  4. @castletoys: Definitely the best selection of toys in the city. There's something for everyone!⁠⠀

  5. @cedarandcoveteethers: This gal makes super cute and stylish teethers right here in Calgary.⁠⠀

  6. @redearth.babyboutique: Stylish, functional & sustainable baby items for the modern parent. So pretty!⁠⠀

  7. @baby__root: This momma makes the cutest hats for mom, dad, and baby. So many cute prints! ⁠⠀

  8. @elles.bowtique: Adorable little bows for babies!!! Yep.⁠⠀

  9. @littleshelflife: Located inside @shelflifebooks, Little Shelf Life has an amazingly curate selection of books for little ones of all ages.⁠⠀

  10. @pickyplatekids: Adorable, reusable, silicon plates that make eating a little more fun for kids.⁠⠀

  11. @growandcompany: These guys make adorable wall art signs and growth charts. So cute.⁠⠀

  12. @buttonsandbeansco: Keep those little head warm this winter!⁠⠀

  13. @lilbuddahbebes: Cute top knots and headbands.⁠⠀

  14. @avi_and_tal: Handmade felt ball garlands, and mobiles for a nursery!⁠⠀

  15. Modern toys for those modern parents on your list!

Everyone has that one person in their life that is IMPOSSIBLE to shop for. They typically like to go with more off-beat choices, and take the road less-travelled. Luckily, we have a whole roster of businesses that are fabulous for people who are hard to shop for!⠀

  1. @reworksyyc: Even though Solita recently shut her physical location, she still has her shop online! Head over there for cool recycled art objects and all things eco-friendly!⠀

  2. @shopmustardtiger: Window decals, candles, jewelry, oh my! Mustard Tiger has something for everyone, especially for people who like creepy cute :) ⠀

  3. @tigerstedtflea: Tigerstedt Flea Market is a Club favourite! Their shop is stocked full of local businesses and artisanal items.⠀

  4. @reidson17th: A Calgary staple! Reid’s is perfect for little knick knacks, stationary, and even kitchen items!

  5. @kricketscalgary: Kricket’s is has so many little gifts and THE BEST card selection.⠀

  6. @white.rabbit.white.rabbit: A newly opened boutique in @nvrlnd.yyc studios, White Rabbit is your go to place for one-of-a-kind show stoppers.⠀

  7. @karenleonedesigns: For the person who loves quirky, eco-friendly gifts - textile objects like pouches, masks (can’t have enough), and reusable paper towels!⠀

  8. @sage_and_sapphire_: Sage & Sapphire is perfect for floral arrangements that last, as they are dried and preserved!⠀

  9. Another shop full of stunning artist made objects, Project A supports Canadian artists and the work they make.⠀

  10. @after_the_rain_yyc: ADORABLE textile objects like dryer balls and felted soap could make wonderful stocking stuffers!⠀

  11. @strawberryboots: Strawberry Boots stocks incredible Japanese objects, from candy coloured stationary to Pokemon bento boxes!⠀

  12. @recessshop: Head to Recess over in Inglewood for the stationary nerd in your life!⠀

  13. @stevieandbean: Another stationary shop for the ahem, brasher stationary nerd in your life! ⠀

  14. @ninthandbrick: A stunning collective that sells a multitude of Calgary artisanal objects.⠀

  15. @paperloverco: Wonderfully perfect cards to accompany your gifts.

We know our city is often associated with cowboy aesthetics, but Calgary has some incredible fashion options when it comes to buying local! From handmade, to consignment, to vintage, our local small businesses are filled with choices! Not sure what they'd like? Consider a getting a gift card!⠀

  1. @madamepremier: Incredibly empowering clothing AND they donate annually to organizations that uplift women! ⠀

  2. @velourclothingexchange: Consignment filled with some of the coolest and unique pieces in the city!⠀

  3. @fieldstudyshop: Uber chic go-to for the Scandinavian minimalist in your life. Everything looks as though it’s come straight off the pages of Kinfolk magazine. ⠀

  4. @adorncalgary: Adorn Boutique in Inglewood is a feminine dream. You are bound to find something wonderful for the girly dresser in your life!⠀

  5. @powwowstyles: Incredible Indigenous fashion designed by Faith Starlight, Powwow Styles has some of the most amazing skirts we’ve ever seen!⠀

  6. @le.freak: Le Freak are vintage extraordinaires whose picks are always unique and on trend.⠀

  7. @prairiebazaar: A club favourite, Prairie Bazaar is the perfect place to find romantic pieces. They also just dropped their plus size line!⠀

  8. @outlierleatherco: For stunning, craft, handmade leather pieces. Cree-owned and operated! ⠀

  9. @sophiegraceshop: Stunning, chic, and handmade with a keen eye for details (they custom dye their clothing!)⠀

  10. @armadillo_leather_handbags: Ethical and classic, Armadillo handbags are beautifully crafted bags in delicious candy colours!⠀

  11. @jaxandjude: Quirky and simple, Jax & Jude sweaters would make a great gift for anyone in your life! ⠀

  12. @saltandlimeclothbar: Salt and Lime Cloth Bar is where you need to head to find cozy pieces for winter and fall.⠀

  13. @stitchestothings: Stitches to Things are wonderfully crocheted objects, from masks to earrings. ⠀

  14. @herleatherco: Pouches, earrings, hair clips, you’re bound to fall in love with one of her amazing creations!⠀

  15. @shopthecurvy: The Curvy Shop stocks exclusively plus size fashion.

Jewelry is such a special and thoughtful gift to get someone, and luckily with today’s list we have local jewelry makers whose designs are absolutely stunning!⠀

  1. @innerwolfjewelry: Inner Wolf Jewelry is some of the most beautiful pieces we’ve seen!⠀

  2. @combinist.goods: Earrings that are lightweight and sparkle like pieces of delicious candy hanging from your ears? Yes please!⠀

  3. @totally.sundays: A favourite in the club, Totally Sundays also just released their holiday collection!⠀

  4. @hadash_jewelries: Hadash Jewelries has some incredible polymer clay pieces. They also released a holiday collection recently!⠀

  5. @nativedivacreations: Traditional and contemporary, Native Diva Creations creates beautiful pieces from necklaces to beaded earmuffs!⠀

  6. @awkwardjewels_: Awkward Jewels is perfect for the jewelry-obsessed weirdo in your life. Check out their latest baby Yoda earrings!⠀

  7. @delirium_fashions: Do you know someone who can never have enough sparkle in their life? Delirium Fashions would be perfect for them!⠀

  8. @jules_sontag: For hand sculpted, breathtaking pieces, Jules Sontag Jewelery is the place to go. We love the moon pendants!⠀

  9. @midland.made: Midland Made not only has wonderful clay earrings, but also lots of stylish scrunchies as well!⠀

  10. @dirtroaddesigns_yyc: Lightweight, eco friendly, and super cute, Dirt Road Designs has you covered! ⠀

  11. @wearableeyesores: Another perfect match for your quirky jewelry-lover, Wearable Eyesores has designs made from old toys such as Troll dolls! ⠀

  12. @joolsandjoplin: Jools and Joplin has beautiful, minimalist designs that would be great for anyone who loves more understated pieces!⠀

  13. @galabidunamyut: Traditional Indigenous beading is what Galabidu Creations specializes in, we LOVE the long earrings! ⠀

  14. @rezinbabe: For incredible work that includes Indigenous objects and medicine, check out the always recognizable Rezin Babe!⠀

Sometimes self-care can look like treating yourself, so maybe grab yourself something while you’re shopping for others? These businesses are bound to give you a glow, one way or another.⁠⠀

  1. @oakandtonic: Not only will Oak + Tonic help your skin, all of their products are eco-friendly as well!⁠

  2. @thebeehivecalgary: A Calgary staple, you can find wonderful bee-made products online or at their store in Kensington.⁠⠀

  3. @toriaskincare: Made right here in Calgary, T’oria Skincare is also vegan and natural! ⁠⠀

  4. @withoutco: A club favourite, we love EVERYTHING that you can find at Without Co. in Mission! Low to no waste beauty, baby!⁠⠀

  5. @apothecaryyyc: Located in Inglewood, The Apothecary has all the supplies you need to create your own beauty products from scratch!⁠⠀

  6. @pranicforest: Focused on herbs, Pranic Forest has everything you need from perfume to herbal medicines!⁠⠀

  7. @acclounge: For custom wigs, A’Couture Coiffure has you covered! They specialize in natural and curly hair. ⁠⠀

  8. @cheekbonebeauty: They have the most perfect lipsticks, and their products are sustainable! Who wouldn’t want one in every colour?⁠⠀

  9. Beautiful silk products, from pillowcases to hair bonnets to masks, you’re bound to find something from Your Majesty!⁠⠀

  10. @suntreesoaps: Natural and eco-friendly, Suntree Soaps has lots of bath products that are bound to make you feel luxurious.⁠⠀

  11. @skwiikskinco: We are excited to try out Skwiik Skin Co’s CBD bath melts! AND 15% of online sales go to the BLM movement.⁠⠀

  12. @sisters_sage: Lynn and Melissa use traditional Indigenous medicine and ingredients to create their products, amazing!⁠

This list is for those who treat their little furry ones like their own children! Here’s some local shops that cater to pet lovers, as well as makers that will make your furbaby extremely happy. ⠀

  1. @thenewforestshop: Perfect for chic pups, The New Forest Shop, located in Kensington, has everything from clothes to beds to toys! ⠀

  2. @unleasheddogyyc: Unleashed is the place to grab wholesome and healthy food, as well as supplements. We love the CBD treats!⠀

  3. @pawsitivelynatural: Mission’s only natural pet food store, it’s worth going just to say hello to Alistair, their pot belly pig! (He’s just old so no petting!) ⠀

  4. @mosbows.yyc: Furry friends can be even cuter when dressed up in bowties, so check out Mo’s Bows!

  5. @malamoosedogco: Alberta winters can be so harsh, so nose balm from Malamoose Dog Co would be a perfect gift for people whose pets snouts get a bit dry⠀

  6. @fairplaystores and @fairplay.wildbird.centre: Sometimes animal lovers prefer the wilder kind, so for those who love to treat the animals on the front porch, Fairplay Wild Bird Centre has you covered!⠀

  7. @twelvepawsca: We are blessed in Alberta with so many hikes, and Twelve Paws has you covered so your four legged bff can join you!⠀

  8. @doodledogsyyc: Raw food specialists, Doodle Dogs is the perfect culinary gift for dogs!⠀

  9. @pupsbeststyle: Pups Best Style, off 17th ave SW, is a great way to make your furry friend look their best!

  10. @k9choicefoods: A raw dog food service, you’re also supporting a local family farm when you purchase from K9 Choice Food!⠀

  11. @pawzactive: Sometimes our little friends can become a bit unruly, and Pawzactive is the answer to helping them straighten up a bit, teaching you how to lead them!⠀

  12. @beansandbonesyyc: Locally made, Beans and Bones bandanas are machine-washable so if you’re pooch is particularly adventurous you don’t need to worry!

  13. @ezantlerchews: Natural and preservative-free, EZ Antler Chews are what dogs are probably dreaming in their sleep. ⠀

  14. @furever_reflections: Head over to Furever Reflections instagram to see why they would be the greatest gift for someone who loves their pet!

Cheers to the makers, crafters, artists and artisans that make life a little more beautiful! Here, we've got tons of small creators you can buy unique gifts from. We've also included small businesses that help you become that crafty artist! Great ideas with a long winter coming ahead.⁠⠀

  1. @highcountryceramics: This creators ceramic pieces are so unique and beautiful.⁠⠀

  2. @evahontela: We love her original paintings - so bright and colourful!⁠⠀

  3. @hookedondixie: The cutest crochet pieces and needle creations.⁠⠀

  4. @theanxiousartist_: Witchy and magical creations! Original illustrations in their Etsy shop are unique and perfect gifts.⁠⠀

  5. @whimsicalcreations.yyc: Love these handmade cement succulent pots! Delivery in Calgary for only $4.⁠⠀

  6. @outofhandyyc: This little needlework shop has all your cute crafting needs, and classes!⁠⠀

  7. @stashlounge: Textile nerds and crafters dreams come true here.⁠⠀

  8. @sunshinelasercreations: Wood signs and laser engravings that are beautiful. Lots of cute Christmas decorations. ⁠⠀

  9. @thirdwheelceramics: Their covid Christmas mugs would make the perfect gift.⁠⠀

  10. @landofdaughters: Metis made! Down to burn the patriarchy.⁠⠀

  11. @jainashandmade: Such gorgeous wall hangings and more!⁠⠀

  12. @pinnovate: DIY art kits to your home?! Yes!⁠⠀

  13. @birch.and.sass: Signs! Banners! Picture frames! So much more!⁠⠀

  14. @candleco.littlerituals: This local maker just started up, and her products are works of art! Vintage vessels filled with homemade candles.⁠⠀

  15. @rickracktextiles: All things sewing and knitting and amazing. They have kits for those looking to begin their sewing journey too!⁠⠀

  16. @wildpetalsboutique: We. Cannot. Even. So pretty! ⁠⠀

  17. @femme.broidery: Kits to do your own embroideries.⁠⠀

  18. @aster.crafts: Beautiful string art.⁠

For the eaters & drinkers of all kinds. Calgary has some amazing food products, as well as shops to help you become the ultimate at-home chef!

  1. @compleatcook: The oldest independent cooking/kitchen store in Calgary!

  2. @britannia_home: So many little gift ideas in this store. Home, kitchen, and more.

  3. Coffee beans from your local cafe: There are too many great cafes to list here, but most of them sell beans in bulk! Give the gift of delicious coffee to be made at home.

  4. @easterndoorwaycoffee: You can order right from small roasters too online, like the indigenous owned Eastern Doorway!

  5. A gift card to a local restaurant: Many restaurants offer gift cards, just ask! (Photo from @alliumcalgary.) We may not be going to many restaurants now, but this is a great way to support them and help them get through the winter.

  6. @justbakedyyc: We love their cake jars! So unique and delicious.

  7. @knifewear: Their staff is also super knowledgeable, so if you have no clue which is the perfect knife for the home-cook in your life, fear not!

  8. @brieandbanquet: This Calgary based caterer has a bunch of gift boxes that make perfect gifts!

  9. @celebration_inabottle: Infused cocktails you can make at home! Just add booze. (So damn cute too).

  10. @onie.granola.jam: Small-batch jams and granolas. Great stocking stuffers!

  11. @allegory.chai: This Calgary couple makes traditional chai, that you can order to your home!

  12. @pastasloot: We are obsessed with their branding... order pasta for your holiday gathering (your small, household only gathering!)

  13. @soymilkandvinegar: This one is for the vegans! Get them all the treats, none of the animal products.

  14. @florafromage: DAIRY FREE cheese. That actually tastes delicious. Made in small batches here in Calgary!

  15. @yycgrowers: We LOVE this business. You will be supporting so many local chefs, makers, and growers, all with one purchase.

  16. @blackdog_bakery: First, they make the most BEAUTIFUL cakes. But they also have adorable cookie decorating kits!

Thanks for reading through our guide, and we hope you discovered some new talent in Calgary to buy from this holiday season! The support for small businesses in our city shouldn't end here, though. We should be sure to continue to support our community into the future. Want to know why local is so important? Stay tuned for our post about WHY shopping local is important, and how it impacts our local economy and our cities.


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