Traditionally, I procure Christmas gifts in one of two ways: Amazon Prime or last-minute panic runs to The Domain. But last December, I made a resolution to buy everything from Austin-based businesses. I scoured Instagram, pored over gift guides, and asked local tastemakers where they did their holiday shopping. The result was a map crisscrossing the city, from Atown to Nannie Inez to The Burlap Bag and back again.
This year I’m starting even earlier with a collection of locally crafted goods perfect for everyone on your list.
Hip housewarming gift
Indoor plant, prices vary, The Fox Den
Forego the boring bottle of wine and bring your host something they can enjoy long after the holidays are gone. With a wide array of cacti, tropical plants, and unique housewares, The Fox Den is a beautifully curated shop teeming with unique gift options. Want to get the plant lover in your life something really special? Sign them up for the plant of the month club. On the first day of the month, The Fox Den will select a 4-inch potted plant to be picked up in store ($20 per month).
Dessert lover's dream
Holiday cookie tins, $30 for 24 cookies plus shipping, Gelateria Gemelli
These swoon-worthy cookie tins from Gelateria Gemelli are the perfect gift for, well, everybody. Inside, dessert enthusiasts will find lemon rosemary polenta shortbreads; buttery hazelnut cookies; candied orange slices dipped in chocolate; and traditional Italian treats like Baci di Dama, Mostaccioli, and Amaretti cookies. Swing by the impeccably designed east side shop to pick them up in person, or have the tins shipped for $5.
Austin Coloring Book, $15 plus shipping and taxes, Becca Borrelli
From bookstores to trendy boutiques, adult coloring books are everywhere this holiday season. Skip the mass-produced stuff and pick one up from local artist Becca Borrelli. Borrelli’s Austin Coloring Book includes 10 original black-and-white scenes from around Austin. Grab a pack of pencils from Jerry’s Artarama for a go-to secret Santa gift.
Smell like a saint
Hotel Saint Cecilia perfume, $100, Hotel Saint Cecilia or Roux St. James
This perfume, called simply Hotel Saint Cecilia, was a collaboration between Roux St. James, a local, all-natural perfumery that specializes in small batch scents, and South Austin’s dreamy Hotel Saint Cecilia. The perfume, which has notes of tea rose, grass, wood, and musk, was crafted in honor of St. Cecilia, the patron saint of music — and the hotel’s namesake.
Haute holiday party
Duffy jumper, $298, Esby Apparel
You may want to keep this one for yourself. The simple yet contemporary Duffy jumper is one of those pieces that instantly becomes a wardrobe staple. Dress it up for a family holiday dinner or dress it down for a low-key night out. Esby designs all its apparel in Austin and makes it in the United States. Swing by the South First Street storefront or go online to purchase.
9 Banded Whiskey, around $28, various locations
Founded here in Austin, 9 Banded Whiskey made its debut earlier this year. Named after the nine-banded armadillo, the founders wanted to create a spirit that paid homage to Austin’s rich cultural past. The result is a barrel aged whiskey made with water filtered through Texas Hill Country limestone.
Wrap it up
Leather iPhone sleeve, $15, Jack + Lola
As ubiquitous as the phones are, well-designed iPhone covers are hard to find. Pick up these handmade leather sleeves at Jack + Lola, a South Austin shop featuring small batch, locally crafted goods. Beautiful, practical, and under 20 bucks? Sounds like the perfect gift.
Keys to the castle
Contour key ring, $16, Dylan Wylde
True story: Since buying this key ring I have received more compliments on it than any other thing I own. Like the leather iPhone sleeve, this keychain is practical and beautiful. Plus, it's big enough to slip around your wrist when you’re running the trail or walking the dog.
Coolest kid on the block
You’re a part of my heart onesie, $20, Briar Bonifacio
There is something unbelievably sweet about these onesies designed by Austin artist Briar Bonifacio. “You’re a part of my heart” is one of two designs available through the Officially Austin website.