Lifestyle

Need Xmas inspo? Check out our gift guide (and they’re all small businesses)

Champion local sellers to support the little guy and gal

Once upon a time, strolling down the high street with Christmas lights dangling above was the perfect way to shop with a few pit-stops for a bevvy.

Though if this year has taught us anything, it’s that we want to champion small businesses and support the little guy and gal rather than big chains.

So, we thought we’d help collate some of the top traders out there for you who are creating incredible goodies to make the perfect festive gifts.

[Credit: The Caketail Club / Instagram]

The Caketail Club

First up, we have The Caketail Club – with cakes that taste like cocktails and cocktails that taste like cake! Think chocolate cake martini, strawberry shortcake mimosa, and Bakewell tart sour.

We’re sold already, though if you need a little more motivation, this golden nugget stems from a home-run family cake business driven by ‘Nanny’, with a passion for good food and drink, a love of music, arts and entertainment all combined with some eclectic minds.

Their indulgent desserts and exciting Caribbean, Latin and American soul food provides a truly unique experience that will take your taste-buds on a culinary adventure. So, start jotting down that ‘IOU voucher’ for a loved one and take them to the vibrant surroundings in London’s Hammersmith… and don’t forget to take a peek at the secret speakeasy basement lounge.

To please your palette, click here: The Caketail Club

[Credit: Gifted Local]

Gifted Local

Next up, we have Gifted Local who find high quality, one-of-a-kind gifts for you and the ones you love from sellers around the corner.

Founded by Helen Robinson, this London-based entrepreneur launched her online shop on a mission to cut down the enormous amounts of packaging that other big retailers waste.

Her website now supports more than 30 independent sellers across five postcodes in Highgate, Muswell Hill, Crouch End, Wood Green and Tottenham – with their products ranging from homeware, accessories, fashion and experiences.

Helen hopes that that she can expand to become a nationwide hub, connecting people with artists while also cutting down on pollution as she offers certain incentives such as free postage for purchasing goods from a seller that is local to you rather than someone across the country.

For those living in the capital, click here: Gifted Local

[Credit: Art to Heart Healing / Etsy]

Art to Heart Healing

If you’re after something to brighten your mood, especially after the year we have had, then Art to Heart Healing is calling your name.

Forget artwork with a splash of colour, we’re talking bursts of light, rainbow heaven and the dreamy world of meditative mandalas to get lost in.

Created by Leicester artist Olivia Mendoza, a former face-painting fairy turned inspirational guru, she promises her work can light up any room as the vibrant uplifting art will “make your soul sing”.

There are also alternative greetings cards, in particular anyone celebrating sobriety from substances will be elated by her quirky range.

To fall down the kaleidoscope of colour, click here: Art to Heart Healing

[Credit: Made by Miriam]

Made by Miriam

Perhaps you’re after something a touch more festive, then Made by Miriam’s handmade glass and ceramic pieces could be right up your street.

Her beautifully distinctive gifts are created using fused glass and ceramics, with a variety of products from personalised baubles for the Christmas tree, mini terracotta ceramic oil diffusers and small items you can send through the post along with your cards.

Miriam promises that each item is made with love and care, and she is very open to commissions, so you are encouraged to get in touch.

To contact the store, click here: Made by Miriam

[Credit: Sincerely Scents / Facebook]

Sincerely Scents

The name says it all really.

If you’re fed up of spending a fortune on designer fragrances, then contact this delightful boutique for amazing perfumes and aftershaves.

You will be surprised at the huge reductions from high street prices, such as bottles on offer for as little as £17 for 50ml.

While the fragrances are manufactured in the same factories as many of the market’s designer brands, using the same oil and blends, they don’t come with fancy packaging waste or expensive marketing campaigns, and consequently that rids them of the designer price tag.

Hurry though, the store are doing a big order on Sunday and this will be the last day taking Christmas gift options.

For that perfect fragrance, click here: Sincerely Scents

[Credit: Marie Marshall]

Marie Marshall

One look at Marie Marshall’s Facebook page and we guarantee your eyes will light up.

This lone ranger is selling cute little coasters, trinket boxes and key rings from her personal page.

The coasters in particular are simply magical, with bright colours galore and glitter that reflects the light. They will look just as beautiful inside as they would outside during a garden party.

For more info, click here: Marie Marshall

[Credit: Aspirations]

Aspirations

For those of you who really want to go to town and light up the festive season or a loved one’s birthday, then Aspirations is for you.

Gifts aside, these events wizards provide exquisite balloon decor that will leave you speechless.

Think big, grand, prom-style designs with arches, bouquets, and gifts baskets – all made from, you guessed it, balloons.

To join in the fun, click here: Aspirations

[Credit: Spiritual Activist]

Spiritual Activist

Love a slogan? Then THIS is the site for you.

With stockings filler ideas aplenty, this quirky site has everything from mugs to T-shirts to baby products.

Some of our fave slogans include, ‘Girls just wanna have fun-damental human rights’, ‘My body, my choice’, and ‘Meditation is the medication’.

For all things slogantastic, click here: Spiritual Activist

[Credit: MĀRĪCĪ]

MĀRĪCĪ

Last but not least, we have the delectable MĀRĪCĪ, inspired by the Punjabi rituals of the Mayian ceremony which is performed one day before a wedding.

The store’s star item boasts elements of healing with the Turmeric Multi Balm, a natural turmeric oil infused with a blend of organic seed oils, beeswax and vitamin E.

This one-jar solution for all skin types can help stretch marks, scarring, dry legs, knees and elbows, and is a rich nourishing night treatment for the face too as it serves as a hydrating lip mask.

With all ingredients ethically sourced, cruelty-free and non-toxic, we think we might have to buy one for ourselves.

To have a gander, click here: MĀRĪCĪ

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