As the holidays are quickly approaching, some of you are still thinking about the gifts you would like to give to others this holiday season. The holidays will be a bit different this year than past years for many unfortunate reasons. Most of us cannot gather with our families as usual. For me personally, I will be in Hong Kong, 8000 miles away from my family and friends back in the United States. While some of us are not able to give gifts in person, there’s still a chance to have small gifts sent to be opened in time for the holidays.
For those looking for last minute gift ideas and inspiration, I’m sharing some of my favorite small businesses that have a beautiful selection of gifts. From special stationery to elegant fragrances, these small businesses around the world have so much to offer for any friend or relative. Most have express international shipping as well to help get those special deliveries into the hands of your loved ones as quickly as possible.
I first discovered this brand earlier this year and immediately became obsessed. I’ve been doing a lot of journaling for the last few years and was looking for some beautifully unique journals. I found Choosing Keeping at random while on Instagram, and I’m so glad I did. Not only does this small shop in London’s Covent Garden source their stationery from small, family-owned businesses, they have such a large selection of journals, fountain pens, watercolor paints, and more. I currently have a few of these extra thick journals as well as beautiful simple journals (available with gold edges or silver edges), and of course I needed to have the right writing utensil for my new journals so I invested in a refillable, elegant fountain pen. These gifts are perfect for anyone in your life, especially someone who enjoys writing or art.
Another stationery store that I love is Guilio Giannini, which I also discovered earlier this year. From decorative notebooks to books of customized lists, these gifts are also perfect for anyone on your list. If anyone on your list is a wine lover, I highly recommend this notebook as it’s a customized book listing wines you’ve opened and wines you’ve collected. Since completing my WSET level 2 and receiving my certificate, I’ve been writing in this notebook every time I open a new bottle to try. If anyone on your list loves to cook and wants a new recipe book, I also recommend this notebook.
I had the honor of visiting La Grange du Parfumeur in person in November 2018 and immediately fell in love with the brand, the founders, and their story. Created in a century-old barn in the romantic countrysides of Québec, Canada in the Eastern Townships, the fragrances that Alexandra Bach weaves into art happen to be some of my favorite scents in the world. My two favorite scents are her very first scent, Rêve À Paris, and La Note Jazz. Rêve À Paris is my springtime fragrance and La Note Jazz is my current winter fragrance. Since I’ve been to their little perfume house in Québec and got to see Alexandra in action firsthand (see my post here about my visit), I know just how much love, creativity, and devotion goes into each bottle which is why these scents make the perfect gift for a special someone.
My latest favorite little shop is Madame de la Maison, a stunning collection of vintage finds in France founded by Ajiri in Paris. Earlier this year, I discovered Ajiri’s shop and not only did I fall in love, I splurged on a few vintage items for my Hong Kong home. It’s easy to see why I love her shop so much. Her carefully curated finds and stylized photo shoots highlighting each item suddenly makes me want to fill my entire home with all her findings. She always has the best antiques to choose from, and if you’re looking for something special for one occasion, you can rent from her! The gift ideas from her shop are endless.
I am obsessed with this NYC brand of fragrances D.S. & Durga, founded by Kavi and David, that are carefully researched and authentically created. For the last two months, I’ve had their Portable Fireplace candle on constant repeat because it’s the closest I’ll get to having a fireplace in Hong Kong. As someone who used to own a home with a wood-burning fireplace, I can vouch that this scent is 100% realistic which made me even more excited about all their other unique scents, including Big Sur After Rain and Concrete After Lightning. They also have a unique collection of perfumes as well for that adventurous person on your gift giving list.
Do you have any favorite small businesses that you’ll be shopping at this holiday season? Feel free to comment with your favorites below!