The holidays are starting to creep closer than a TLC song and for all of us procrastinators (looking at you, woman in the mirror) who like to shop at the last minute…well we all know what those quick gifts usually look like.
- Online shopping – trying to find something unique enough, but that will also be shipped within 1 minute (because, we’re last MINUTE shoppers!).
- Pinterest & Freaking out – working on 6,000 DIY gifts until our fingers crack and we start to feel like Santa’s elves in the North Pole.
With the gifts done and sent to their final destination there’s always relief mixed with anxious assessments.
Will they like their gift? Did I wait too long?
Socks are a great gift, right?
Gift giving can be crazy stressful. Luckily, some of the best holiday gifts come in small (business) packages.
2020 has broken many records so far, and online shopping trends are just one of them. But, Amazon does not need anymore of our $$. Especially not this time of year.
So, let’s change it up a bit. We know Amazon and the big retailers will be there tomorrow, and the days after.
But, we don’t know if our favorite family-owned coffee shop, gift shop or restaurant will still be there.
We don’t know if the businesses our friends, family, and neighbors who pour their whole heart and soul into will live past the ball drop on New Years. And that’s a freaking hard pill to swallow.
In fact, while the founders of Amazon and Walmart have gotten over $100 billion richer during the pandemic, around 20% of all small businesses have closed forever.
Shopping small means we all win big. Not only will you have a chance to give with intention, you will also be supporting with action.
When we support small businesses it has a huge impact on our local economy and community.
American Express did a study and found that around 67 cents of each dollar spent at a local small business remains within your local economy and 44 cents goes to the business owner and their employees.
And to top it off, your loved ones will get truly unique, personalized gifts that aren’t one-clicked, but specially picked and customized.
You also get to support someone’s dream. How awesome is that?
So, without further ado here are 21 gift ideas from small businesses and artists in Tacoma:
This woman-owned massage therapy center is in the heart of Tacoma and is the perfect place to wind down. Self-care time? Done. Treat yourself? Check. Grab a gift certificate or two from their website! It’s on sale!
Know someone with a sweet-tooth, but who also lives on the edge of their taste buds? AKA, likes a little kick? Pico Rico offers tasty treats in the form of candy, dried fruits and nuts coated with their specialty chili sauce blend. Think spicy gushers, spicy skittles, and spicy sour patch candies. *drool*
Reduce waste AND has good taste? Tacoma Soap Refillery offers refillable, reusable and sustainable home and personal care products. And they deliver them straight to your door! No more plastic, much less hassle. Who knew reducing waste could be so easy! Some of their products include sugar scrubs, body butters, bamboo toothbrushes, eucalyptus shower steamers and much more!
Looking for an educational and entertaining gift for a kid between 2.5 and 4 years old? Naturally Kidds is not only a local preschool, they also sell sensory bin kits that allow children to explore and investigate different sensory moments. One of their kits includes a DIY Christmas Tree for children to put together.
Boring gifts? No such thing at the Manic Mermaid. In fact, they guarantee it. Manic Mermaid is an art gallery and gift shop in Tacoma that has a gift for everyone, from essential oils for the zombie apocalypse to quarantine treasures. Safe to say you’ll be prepared for whatever 2021 has in store.
6. NC Kayaks
Nothing says socially-distanced better than a kayak. This family-owned and operated Tacoma business has been making kayaks for 20 years and you can order a customizable kayak easily! They also love to give back to their community. If a kayak isn’t in the budget this year, they also sell kayak ornaments.
Need an extra personalized gift? Like, extra extra personalized? This local business specializes in custom engraving. Some customer favorites include custom wine tumblers, custom wedding signs, and custom cutting boards.
Coffee made with grit, love, and campfire–what’s not to love? Black-owned, family-operated and a whole vibe anyone can get with. Their online store features delicious campfire roasted whole bean coffee, apparel, drink ware and more.
9. King’s Books
Book lovers know there’s nothing better than turning a page, folding the corners as a bookmark and sniffing out the story within. For that, you go to the King. You can order books or gifts from King’s Books online from your couch. That’s bookworm heaven.
10. The Curious Bear
A toy and book shop that covers just about everything a kid could possibly need or want. Items range from nursery decor to baby shower balloons to crafts, books and popular toys!
11. The Fernseed
Because plants. Plants all day. Everyday. For every occasion, vibe, emotion, event, etc. Many of us even got really close with our plants during quarantine. Maybe even named them Marcy and Tobias. Just me? Ok. Either way, Fernseed has a wide array of plants and flowers for all the leafy needs.
12. PNW Soap Co.
Mom-owned? Check. Vegan only ingredients? Check. Handmade? Cheeeck! PNW Soap Co. has lovely vegan soaps, bath bombs, hair dye, candles and wax melts.
13. Jack and Adeline
Located in Point Ruston Public Market, Jack and Adeline are a husband-wife duo making beautiful home + kitchen decor and furnishings from salvaged wood sourced here in the PNW.
14. Dazed Artworks
Handmade creative art to heal the heart. Now that’s heartistry! Dazed Artworks holds events and art classes as well as sells stunning handmade art and vintage clothing.
15. Yoga Wild
A woman-owned yoga studio centered in building + healing + educating it’s community with affordable classes founded on the practice of collective and environmental care. You can gift a membership that will include a variety of styles of classes from local teachers. Classes are exclusively online for health and safety reasons until COVID-19 cases go down and it is safe to reopen the studio.
Black-owned, woman-owned, and veteran-owned for the triple win! A beauty supply store carrying wigs, weaving hair, extensions, bundles and much more for all your hair and beauty needs.
A plant-based kids subscription box designed to get kids excited (and willing) to eat more veggies! Each box is filled with recipes and eco-friendly crafts. Plus, shipping is FREE and 10% of sales are donated to fighting hunger. Yes, peas!
The gift of a clean car is so underrated! That new car smell really makes you feel invincible. Gift cards on sale through December 24th.
Eco-warriors unite! This Tacoma based zero waste and sustainable living boutique is determined to give back to the community and environment. They specialize in bulk refills of home/personal care products and sustainable alternatives to common disposable items. Their holiday collection is wonderful and they offer FREE local delivery!
Let’s Row the boat a little and take a trip to downtown Tacoma on Antique Row.
Once voted one of the top 10 places to visit in Tacoma, this treasure does NOT disappoint. It’s one of those you have to see for yourself type places with a little something for everyone.
21. The Mercantile
Another wonderful treasure on Tacoma’s Antique Row! A business that combines three women-owned businesses that sell candy, clothing, vintage home decor, accessories and books.
Any Foodies present? Dine Pierce County put together a list of holiday gift ideas from over 30 local food small businesses.
Need to shop from home but still want to support small businesses? No problem!
You can shop small and locally online! The Tacoma Chamber in partnership with Pierce County, Tacoma Urban League, Puyallup Sumner Chamber and Spaceworks Tacoma put together the South Sound Gift Guide where you can shop Pierce County small businesses from the comfort of your home.
Now, go give the coolest, raddest, most unique gifts ever to your friends, family and maybe someone you know (neighbor?) who could use a pick-me-up.
Gifts not accessible right now? There are other ways to support small businesses that are equally important! Spread the word about your favorite businesses, like their social media pages, and share their content (especially sales) with people you know could benefit!
And if you have two seconds, leave a review on Google! 97% of people read online reviews and 93% say online reviews impact their purchasing decision.
Hope you have a wonderful holiday season with your housemates, your plants, and zoom!
Because..quarantine, am I right? 😉