What would be more appropriate on Small Business Saturday than to tell you all about my latest ventures in Shopping Small this Christmas?
Ever walked past a shop in your town and thought “I must pop in there one day”? So many times I’ve done this walking through Whitley Bay, so this year I pledged to myself that I would buy as many of my Christmas gifts as possible from local and small businesses. One of the nicest parts of this has been chatting to the shop owners and workers while I’ve been browsing. When they hear about my plan to shop small for Christmas they’ve been getting so excited about it. It’s wonderful to see the smile on their face as I’ve handed over my purchases.
Here are a few of my picks for shopping small this Christmas:
Elsee (Whitley Bay)
A wonderful little shop full of local prints, stationary, decor pieces and a cosmetics section which I need to try! I always leave this shop with a smile.
For the Love of the North (Whitley Bay and Newcastle City Centre)
If it’s Northern gifts you’re after this is the place to go. From coastal printed tea towels to sea glass baubles made from Whitley Bay’s own sea glass. After a North East Christmas card? The variety in here has something for every taste. One of my favourite things from here is my Northern Homebird tote bag – perfect for stuffing in my bag “just in case” something catches my eye in the shop!
The Chocolate Smiths (West Allotment)
Chocolate bars filled with the most exciting and delicious flavours all made locally – there’s so many wonderfully wacky bars to choose from I fear I won’t be waiting until Christmas Day to burst out of my jeans. They even have some Christmas Special Edition flavours available, from Christmas cocktails to festive food. Available in places such as Fenwick’s Food Hall, Beamish and Alnwick Garden they are doing amazing for themselves! You can find your nearest stockist here – or if you can’t get to them you can order online too. Ideal to satisfy those festive sugar cravings!
The best places to find gifts you may not otherwise come across is your local Christmas market. Or make a day of it and go to somewhere further afield! Yesterday I visited Whitley Bay’s St Nicholas Festival Christmas Market stalls ‘for a look around’… well, of course it didn’t turn out just as a look around but I ended up leaving with gifts ranging from local ale from Whitley Bay Brewing Co to some cheese from Northumberland Cheese Company and even some traditional sweets from Canny Candy Gadgies.
Whitley Bay’s market is on today and Sunday so I throughly recommend you have a stroll through – you can even pop into the local shops on your way through or to the local eateries for lunch! If you need any inspiration of where to eat I can thoroughly recommend giving Chloe at New Girl in Toon a visit – this lady certainly knows how to lunch.
For further inspiration on shopping local to North Tyneside Life In Geordieland has a wealth of ideas that certainly pointed out some places to me to pay a visit.
Do you have a favourite local business/shop you like to visit for shopping?