Back in the day, I was a hard core Black Friday shopper. Armed with a detailed shopping list and a bundle of sales paper, my cousin and I would start before dawn, take naps in our car in between shopping trips, and keep going until 10 a.m. — leaving enough time to get breakfast at Chick-fil-A.

But those days are long gone and not just because I’m too old for the chaos and the crowd. These days my tastes have changed and I’m much more interested in buying gifts for others (and myself) from independent makers and locally owned shops.

Here are a few #ShopLocal ideas for you:




Share your love for the Magic City (or any other city) with an airport code code hat or tee from Aviate.


Scents from Heaven

Whether you’re looking to set the mood for romance or writing, these candles by Brittney Stallworth of Scents from Heaven will do the trick. All candles are hand-poured, highly scented and can be used as a massage oil. These candles are all natural, made with 100% soy wax and do not emit harmful chemicals into the environment. Check out Brittney’s interview with Purchase your candles here.


Lil’ Seeds

Christy Turnipseed of Lil’ Seeds can create unique jewelry for you to celebrate your favorite book or even your favorite place. Christy makes rings, earrings, necklaces and more using vintage paper from books, maps, etc.or other images. In my own jewelry collection you’ll find earrings inspired by The Great Gatsby, a ring inspired by Fahrenheit 451, and a necklace with an image of the famous “You Are Beautiful” graffiti in Birmingham. Shop her collection or place your custom order here.


True Vine Gifts

For the wine lover on your list, head to True Vine Gifts by Sasha Maples Johns. Sasha makes jewelry ornaments and even Christmas wreaths with wine corks! She also makes spiced red wine jelly, which is perfect for the holidays.