Today marks the start of the Christmas shopping season and I’m posting this from an outlet mall far, far away from Megan’s Island. This is the sixth or seventh year of this tradition and even though I’m not shopping for a new big screen TV or any presents really, I love spending this quality time with these friends, even if it is way too early in the morning.
I’m not against big box stores or easy ordering on Amazon, or even the medium-sized stores, but this year we’ve made a concerted effort to “shop small” when shopping for presents. We’re about halfway done with our holiday shopping and I’d encourage you think small when you shop this year.
To make shopping small easier for you, I’ve decided to highlight several businesses owned by some of my favorite people. Bookmark these links for the future, to shop beyond just the holidays!
Bottle & Bull. This new Kirkland restaurant, run by my favorite restaurateur couple Jessi and Chad, opened this week. Stop by to fuel your shopping adventures or pick up a gift card to put in someone’s stocking! Experience the travels of Ernest Hemingway through your palette, eating and drinking your way through the cities that Hemingway loved to frequent; Havana, Paris, Florence and Pamplona (where he discovered his love for bull fighting!) to name a few.
Coloring Nature. My friend Cari and her husband own this organic landscaping company. Beyond landscaping, they offer holiday wreaths, succulent logs, floral design, corks, and occasional classes. You can find Coloring Nature online and at the Fremont Sunday Market.
Coppersmith Orthopedic and Sports Physical Therapy is my favorite physical therapy clinic for all that ails me. In fact, I’ve been a loyal customer for more than 30 years, since the clinic is owned by my parents. If you have physical therapy needs, I highly recommend you head to Coppersmith PT! (Thanks for being blog readers, Mom & Dad!)
Dailey Method. The Dailey Method is a unique combination of ballet barre work, core conditioning, muscle strengthening, yoga, and orthopedic exercises. Owners Brenda and Michelle are killer yet magical instructors and they offer online purchasing options as well as gift cards. They even feature local businesses (like Little Britches Bakery) in their lobby. Extra shop small points for the Dailey Method!
Davenport Cellars. I love myself some wine and Davenport Cellars is run and owned by two of my favorite winemakers. Not only are their wines fantastic, their price point can’t be beat. My “favorite” bottle of Davenport flips on a weekly basis, from the Cab-dominant Continuity to the Merlot-dominant RHD. I have recruited several friends to join the Davenport wine club and I’d encourage you to head over to Woodinville, taste some wine and support Washington winemakers and this small business.
Style By Wendy helps those who feel outdated, frumpy, or insecure to discover more confidence in their closet. Whether it is a closet clean-out, creating outfits with your clothes, personal shopping, or determining your color wheel, Wendy makes you feel good about yourself and what you wear every single day.
Libby’s Paper Party Hats. My dear friend Libby (and future business partner, if everything goes as planned!) makes paper party hats, banners and more, selling her wares on Etsy. Libby’s paper party hats are beautiful and crafted with talent and love. I received a my very own University of Washington-themed paper party hat for my 31st birthday. It’s great, isn’t it!?
Little Britches Bakery. Shameless plug right here! Little Britches Bakery is my part-time gig and my creative outlet. It isn’t a real bakery, instead its completely inedible, practical and completely usable baby gifts that look like your favorite bakery treats. (They’re “too sweet to eat,” get it!?) You should for sure follow Little Britches on Etsy, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and think of Little Britches next time one of your friends announces a pregnancy. I ship anywhere in the US and offer completely customizable baby gifts!
Vine Trainings. The perfect party: you, your friends, and some delicious wines. My friend Zach teaches Vine Trainings classes, including a minimum of seven wines, several hours of personalized and hands-on instruction, and a whole lot of fun. All you need is seating for 10-12 people and somewhere for the wine glasses! Prices start at $35/person, and the specific wines and styles are customizable and negotiable. I wrote about Vine Trainings earlier this year.
Seafood Lover’s Pacific Northwest. I may link to Amazon, but you can find this at a local independent book seller. (We bought our copy at the University Bookstore.) This is my friend Karen’s first book and she set the bar high for her upcoming projects! Her book is great– it has a little bit of everything: recipe, recommendations, lore, and more! The book has inspired Brandon and I to explore the well-known gems and the diamonds in the rough that we had no idea about. After hearing about all of Karen’s oyster experiences, I’m going to give them another shot! Spoiler alert: we bought extra copies for Christmas presents!
I have several photographer friends and would recommend any and all of them. Here are the local Seattle-area photogs: Erin Schedler Photography, Kristi Waite Photography, and Mike Fiechtner Photography (you’ll see our wedding photos on the home page!).
Tomorrow is Small Business Saturday and I hope you take some time to “shop small” this holiday season!