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  • Writer's pictureAmanda Shields


Updated: Dec 29, 2020

Make a difference this holiday season by shopping sustainably and locally.

More than ever, small businesses need our support. That's why this year's gift-wrapped boxes under my tree aren't from big box stores.

Since the inception of my staging and interior design businesses, shopping local and supporting eco-conscious, Canadian brands has been a centrepiece of my business model.

As an entrepreneur, I know the passion and tireless work that goes into running your own company. That's why I urge you to skip the Amazon orders and show your online shopping love for incredible Canadian interior design stores.

Here's where to shop for local gifts in December 2020:

1. Ceramic Necklace

The accessory-lover who wants to make a statement, yet be subtle, at the same time, will be head-over-heels (neck-over-knees?) for this! Handmade and hand painted marble-effect beads on an adjustable waxed cotton cord are an effortless showstopper.

Shop here: Kristen Lim Tung

2. Whimsical Doormat

Vancouver Island's Indaba is a design wholesaler committed to sourcing beautiful, handcrafted pieces from around the world. The awesome mother-daughter team, responding to the COVID-19 crisis, are now selling directly to end buyers and passing on the retail profits to the local shops they supply. Like this awesome initiative, this lovely welcome doormat is sure to make everyone smile.

Shop here: Indaba

3. Candle Tins

I love the Swell Made Co. for many reasons: female-owned; quality and natural products; and each purchase goes to support PLAN Canada's Because I Am A Girl. I promise whomever you gift this sophisticated candle set will think you're super-swell.

Shop here: Swell Made Co.

4. Incense Matches

Light the fire, hang the stockings on the mantle, and stuff them with these sophisticated incense matches. Perfect for the yoga and meditation lover, these elegant matches are both design-conscious and super soothing. I think they are Om-azing!

Shop here: Spruce Toronto

5. Reversible Throw

What can I say, when it comes to good design, Blacksaw knows how to throw down! With its symbolic doves of peace and cozy warmth, the Lottalove reversible blanket is the perfect Christmas gift. Made from sustainable and soft alpaca and designed here in Canada.

Shop here: Blacksaw

6. Small Vessels

Limited-edition and handmade in Montreal, these stoneware vessels are reminiscent of Central & South American pottery traditions. They're almost too pretty to drink from -- but they certainly would look gorgeous on display and what a unique gift for your loved one to unwrap!

Shop here: Chic & Basta

7. Turkish Rug Cushion Covers

Looking for the perfect Christmas gift for your favourite Newmarket interior designer? Well, it so happens they can be found at Show Cushions, which also happens to be woman-owned and located in Newmarket ON. Created from authentic Turkish rugs, how gorgeous are these pillow covers?

Shop here: Show Cushions

8. Minimalist Candlesticks

Handmade in Montreal and sold on Etsy, these timeless, yet modern, candlesticks earned a 5-star rating and will be sure to light up the eyes of your hostess or friend. Scandinavian-inspired, forget about going to the big Swedish store and feast your eyes on these at the holiday dinner table.

Shop here: Fabrique Deco

9. Leopard-print Scrunchie

This accessory roars "Girl Power", fitting since the forces behind this Canadian scrunchie brand are two young women, Jaimie and Kerrie. Pop this fun piece in as a stocking stuffer and the tresses it dresses will be 'feline' fine!

Shop here: X.Oh Scrunchies

10. Stoneware Vases

Local Montreal shop Chic & Basta makes my list again with these handmade stoneware vases, appealing to the design-lover who has everything. A person who has a special place in your heart will definitely find a special place on the shelf for one of these handcrafted beauties.

Shop here: Chic & Basta

11. Cute Ottoman

I love Tonic Living and have been shopping here for some time. The woman who owns this local small business has the Midas touch for finding beautiful designs and I urge you all to support her. Besides, who wouldn't love to put their feet up on this sweet spot?

Shop here: Tonic Living

12. Art Prints

Great art doesn't have to cost a lot, as this Waterloo-based print shop proves. High-quality res prints and super-affordable, pick the perfect one they'll promptly send you the digital image. Be sure to have it printed and framed locally and then you are supporting two to three small businesses! I've done this for many projects and I think a gift recipient would enjoy a framed piece just as my clients have.

13. Gold Wreath

Indaba Trading Co. appears on my list again and for good reason. Woman-owned and operated, its mandate is to help other business owners whose livelihoods have been compromised by the pandemic, so I've been supporting them and encourage you to do the same. This stunning iron frond gold wreath is a gift you might also wish to buy yourself, and knowing you're helping local stores, the purchase is well justified,

Shop here: Indaba

14. Kitchen Kit

Eco-friendly and vegan, this kitchen kit would be a thoughtful gift for your favourite vegan chef (or for the aspiring one.) Easy on the eyes, and the environment! Be sure to check out the other original items this woman-owned small business offers.

15. Decorative Wooden Beads

I can't stop admiring how pretty these are! The soothing wood and sweet-looking hearts add a textural layer to the lucky gift recipient's shelf or tabletop. Again, by ordering Christmas gifts online from Indaba, you help create the ripple effect of supporting a female-owned Canadian business and the local retailers they supply to.

Shop here: Indaba

As always, thanks for reading -- and for supporting local Canadian design stores.

Happy Holidays & Happy Shopping!



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