Here are a bunch of local gift ideas that support our small businesses.

Since Christmas is bearing down on us pretty fast, I wanted to give you some legitimate (not crappy) ideas if you’d like to buy local gifts from around the Spartanburg area. But really, these can apply to whatever city you’re in. A little research will yield loads of local sweet spots.

I love shopping in downtown Spartanburg. I don’t get to do it as often as I used to, but one of my favorite things to do on a sunny day is to take my daughter downtown to get yummy food, a hot coffee or cocoa and walk through every single shop on Main Street. So, here is a nifty little guide to give you some great ideas. Because, it’s more about thinking about the people you care about … not so much just giving to them.

Local yummy eats

Give a gift card from your favorite local coffee shop or a box of yummy cupcakes from the local bakery. Little River Roasting Co. is a great place to find yummy goodies for coffee lovers and shares the Masonic Lodge with the Hub City Bookshop. Another great spot for tasty treats and even frozen meals is Blue Moon Specialty Foods on Church Street.

Take someone out to your favorite local eatery. I love the the Farmer’s Table on Daniel Morgan Ave and another favorite “fancy” night out is always the Peddler Steakhouse in their classy digs right downtown.

Unique items

You can find unique local gifts by artists in nearly every little shop on Main Street, but my favorites have been the Artists Collective and the Hub City Farmer’s Market, which is open nearly all year ’round now.

You can find really cool specialty items at places like The Local Hiker and Arrowhead Design. Imagination Station has been a favorite spot in years past for the kiddos on our list.

Experiences

It’s not always about getting stuff. I don’t know about you, but I don’t need one more tchotchke to collect dust in a corner of my house. There are a million things to do with someone special in Spartanburg. I love walking the Cottonwood Trail or visiting the Glendale Shoals Preserve. I already mentioned hanging out downtown where there is always music or something going on. Find a show at the Chapman Cultural Center or rent a bicycle and travel the neighborhoods or Rail Trail. In the warmer months you could have a picnic or see a movie on the lawn at Barnet Park and then the skating rink goes up in November in Morgan Square every holiday season.

local gifts by macrame and mimosas

You could also go way off the map and make something yourself! I made these ornaments last year for clients and family. It’s not as cheesy or childish as you think. Most people LOVE getting tiny little handmade things.

Shopping for Local Gifts Online

Yes, it is possible to shop online and buy all local gifts. I began selling on Etsy last year and have since started shopping there almost as often as I shop Amazon. Especially for gifts. You can use their filters to find local shops, not just to the United States, but you can narrow it down even further. If you search for sellers in “South Carolina” you’re going to find locals like Karisma by Kara, Blue Bird Washi and even yours truly at Macramé and Mimosas. And hint, hint … lots of the businesses I’ve linked to in this article offer online shopping of some kind.

I hope you get some inspiration on a new gift idea from my favorite small businesses. I know I get inspired every time I visit one of these places. Remember that shopping at small local businesses and buying from artists and makers is what make our community great. We are blessed to have so many amazing business owners and local performers and makers in the Upstate. Now, excuse me while I make out my wish list.