Are you looking for gifts to get your loved ones this holiday season (or any season really)? It's so special when you are able to get local gifts. And it makes the gift giving that much more personal when you know the faces behind the business! Added bonus: you don't need to wait for shipping! So if you are in need of a last minute gift, this is the perfect option.
Here are some of my favorite shops that I have gotten gifts from year after year. I have gotten to know some of the shop owners too and it's so nice to chat with them when I come in to shop.
If you are not local, I've linked some of the online shops below for you to check too.
Comment below if there are any you are excited to visit that I missed!
Jump Ahead to Learn More
T & J Soap
Where: 271 River Street, Troy, NY
Online Shop: TandJsoaps - Etsy
This shop has a very large selection of handmade soaps with so many unique scents. There really is something for everyone. Not only do they smell lovely but they look beautiful too. They also sell candles, bath and shower bombs, bathroom accessories, local art, and much more. All of the body products are made with high quality ingredients.
Theresa (pictured left) is the owner of this shop and is always so sweet whenever I visit the shop. Here is a little about her story:
"Welcome to my little slice of heaven! Nine years ago I opened a small boutique in the center of historic Troy, NY. When customers come to my shop they find a variety of artisan soaps, all made from scratch. There is something for everyone as I make about 40 different varieties including soaps made from local beer, wine and tea. Customers will also find a variety of other body products including lotions, fizzies, soaks & my hand-poured soy candles.
Soapmaking started out of a need. My husband has eczema and we found that natural soaps were the best for his skin. My job as a high school art teacher was affected during the recession. After a few years of teaching part-time I decided to supplement my income and help my husband's skin at the same time by making soap. I am a self taught soapmaker utilizing my degree in sculpture to make each soap. After I was laid off in June 2012, I took a leap and opened my own brick and mortar."
Where: 269 River Street, Troy, NY (right next store to T & J Soap)
Online Shop: Collections – Annick Designs
This shop has such beautiful things in it it's almost like going into a museum. There are crystals and little air plants and hanging ornaments all around. The jewelry is stunning and really well priced too. This is the place to go if you are looking for jewelry for your loved ones.
Here's a little bit about the owner and designer Annick Ebersole. "As an artist, self taught in jewelry design, Annick worked the show circuit, selling her pieces throughout the northeast for over 20 years. In 2012, she opened her first brick and mortar store in Troy, New York. Our storefront carries an extensive line of artisan jewelry, mostly created by Annick as well as other featured artists. Annick's work specializes around wire wrapping with rare minerals and crystals. In our store, you will also find mineral specimens and crystals for the collector, designer journals, stained glass creations, ornamental art and home decor."
Artcentric Eclectic Marketplace
Where: 266 River Street, Troy, NY
Affordable Style with vintage flair is this store's slogan, and it is a great description. If you love old furniture and home decor (like me), then this is the shop for you. There are a lot of little decorative pieces and quirky items in this store that would make the perfect gifts. And it's all second hand which makes these items pretty rare and sustainable too!
The owner Debra (pictured) is really knowledgeable and so nice to talk to. She will often remember that I've come in the store and say hi and chat while I'm looking around. Here is a little about the store. "We buy furniture that reflects the fine workmanship of the past. Mid Century, Victorian, Art Deco and more . This site will serve as an introduction to what you will find at Artcentric."
Where: 290 River Street, Troy, NY
Online Shop: www.bhny.com
Books are one of my favorite gifts to give during the holidays. There is always a good book for everyone on your list. This year, instead of going to a big box store or ordering online, considering stopping by Market Block Books in Troy or their other location in Albany. It's so important to support these independent book stores, and if they don't have what you are looking for they will order it for you to pick up in store! The staff is very helpful and knowledgeable and the store is so cozy.
"The Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza is entering its 37th year of service to the Capital District. Locally Owned, Truly Independent, One of a Kind…simple but distinctive words in this age of big box chain stores. It’s cozy, intimate, full of character and sporting a staff known for its sense of humor not to mention its competency and dedication to customer service and to books themselves.
Market Block Books, located in historic downtown Troy at the intersection of River and Third Streets, has been a focal point for the downtown since its grand opening in November 2004. The store features a full line of adult and children's books, literature, travel, cooking, and a large history section.
The Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza, The Little Book House (our children's store, right next door) and Market Block Books in beautiful downtown Troy are more than just purveyors of books. The long term staff, through years of volunteerism, community outreach and charity have made us a special contributor to our community. We are a charter member of Capital Region Local First, home to over forty book clubs and regularly host readings by local and nationally recognized authors. Our family of booksellers welcomes you to enjoy our hospitality and share our love of books."
Where: 284 River St, Troy, NY
The Broken Mold Studio has recently created a beautiful gallery/shop for local potters to display and sell their work. It is so beautiful it's like visiting a museum. There are so many different styles and pieces to choose from and you are directly supporting local artists. They also have private group and individual classes where you can learn to create as well. The class could be a great gift for those in your life that like to create and want to try something new!
"The Broken Mold Studio is a pottery shop, studio, and learning space for all ages. We’re a group of creatives who enjoy expressing ourselves artistically right here in Troy. Our retail space showcases the work of local potters, and our working studio is the perfect place for beginning or experienced potters alike. Come shop for your home or for gifts, take a class with us, or reserve our studio space to create your own masterpieces!"
Where: 38 3rd Street, Troy, NY
Online Store: www.troyclothandpaper.com
Troy Cloth and Paper is a fun screen printing shop that sells all kinds of great gifts. From cards to posters to apparel, this is the perfect place to get something for everyone on your list. They have a lot of great designs and Troy specific ones that celebrate the city. They also offer custom screen printing orders so if you have an event, group, or business that needs merch, this is the place to go!
"Troy Cloth & Paper opened in 2011 as a design studio and silkscreen printing shop serving customers both locally and across the country. Since then, we've evolved to exist purely as a retail shop selling goods including greeting cards, clothing, and art prints all designed and printed in our studio shop in downtown Troy, NY. We pride ourselves in using domestically sourced and environmentally friendly materials whenever possible."
Where: 183 4th St, Troy, NY
Online Shop: www.fireandashshop.com
This vintage shop is off the beaten path, but absolutely worth the visit. They have a lovely, curated collection of vintage clothes and accessories. I just love the style and the message behind this shop. There is also a hair salon here if you want to stop by and get your hair done for the holidays and do a little shopping.
"Fire & Ash grew out of an early obsession with finding old things. With over 25 years of digging through attics, basements, barns, garage sales etc., I have amassed a curated collection of beautiful vintage garments. It is my hope that each item can find its perfect home where it will be worn and loved again and again.
As the climate crisis rages on, fast fashion accounts for almost 10 percent of annual global emissions, releasing approximately 1.2 billion tons of carbon dioxide into the earths atmosphere. Fast fashion is also the second-largest consumer of the worlds water supply, using around 1.5 trillion liters of water annually, polluting the water with chemical waste and micro-plastics.
Buying vintage is a sustainable and earth conscious way to stock your closet with pieces unique to your individual style. There’s a lot of magic in the love of vintage and you can feel good about extending the life of a garment, both in reducing your carbon footprint and supporting a local business.
All sales are final. Each piece has been hunted for and hand-selected ensuring excellent vintage condition. Any major flaws and signs of wear will be noted and priced accordingly." - Owner Ash
What are your favorite local businesses to shop in Troy? Comment them below!
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