It’s hard not to love our scrappy, quirky little city, which has experienced incredible growth over the last eight years. More local restaurants, boutiques, and businesses open every year and the District is thriving. While we have a great food scene, I’m still of the opinion that we could use more local boutiques, clothing stores, and lifestyle brands. But, always one to look on the bright side, it has gotten a lot better, and there are a lot of small shops and small makers producing incredible items made right here in Washington. One peek at the #MadeinDC hashtag on Instagram and you’ll discover all sorts of incredible things happening right around you!
If you like to shop local, or are in a pinch this holiday shopping season, we’re curated our top picks for gifts you can find right here in Washington.
For the hostess
If you’re looking for an easy hostess gift, drop by one of Olivia Macaron’s three locations—all adjacent to more shopping in Georgetown, Tyson’s Corner, and Montgomery Mall. The macaron patisserie has a darling gift box featuring holiday flavors like candy cane, egg nog, and dark chocolate. You can pick up your macarons in store, order local delivery, or ship nationally from the website.
Another easy, beautiful stocking stuffer is chocolate. And we love the beautiful packaging on local chocolatier Harper Macaw’s gourmet chocolate bars.
If your friends like to cook or entertain, consider picking up a giftset of ‘Chups fruit ketchup ($25), locally made fruit ketchup that can be used as marinades, on cheese boards, or in any number of fashions in the kitchen. For the oyster lover in your life, we’re obsessed with the Shucking Awesome Gift Basket, featuring a cranberry ‘Chups, shucking gloves, and a cocktail sauce recipe.
Meanwhile, a budding mixologist will appreciate a festive bottle Element Shrub Cranberry Hibiscus ($18.99) to craft home-made cocktails.
Get your homebody friend a cozy, cinnamon-scented candle from Handmade Habitat ($20).
Clockwise from top left: Le District Tee | Handmade Habitat Gather candle | Smathers & Branson Jolly Roger Key Fob | Harper Macaw Chocolate| Shah & Shah Bling on a String | Olivia Macaron Holiday Gift Box |Matine Laird Weekender || Element Shrub Cranberry Hibiscus | Woven Scarf | ‘Chups Gift Box | UrbanStems x No Kings Collective x Bucketfeet 7s | Stubble & Stache Face & Beard Wash
For the fashionista
Fellow D.C. darlings will appreciate the series of D.C.-centric tees from District of Clothing. The soft, form-fitting Le District tee will allow you to rep your District pride.
For the gal who loves a weekend getaway, this Matine monochrome leather duffel ($360) is a thoughtful gift.
If your friend cares about social good, Woven is your new favorite online store. Begun by a local USAID employee (and friend), Woven sources hand-made pieces—scarves and accessories—from a remote island in Guatemala, where Guatemalan women make everything by hand, using all-natural dyes and cottons. She then imports all the pieces for sale online back in the States—but also sells locally at pop up markets around town.
Jewelry is the ideal gift for any gal—who doesn’t love a delicate gold necklace or pair of earrings? We’re utterly in love with Shah & Shah Distinctive Jewelers, a boutique, custom jeweler in Dupont Circle who makes everything custom, by-hand and only uses the highest quality gold and diamonds. That’s something we spoiled Bitches can get behind—but then again we firmly believe every girl deserves to be spoiled. Plus, jewelry is the only thing she won’t throw away. For an easy gift, get the Bling on a String—a stunning, sparkly diamond on a silk bracelet in nearly every color imaginable ($250-$500 per bracelet.)
For the guys
Pick up a cheeky hand-made needle point key fob from Smathers & Branson ($28.50) as a stocking stuffer for your Dad, brother, or boyfriend. The preppy brand, which is based in Bethesda, also does awesome hand-made belts, another great gift. If your guy is trendy, then opt for a pair of Bucketfeet, who recently launched a collaboration with local artists No Kings Collective.
Looking to shop locally in a pinch? You can find many of these brands at Union Market, Steadfast Supply in Navy Yard, and Salt & Sundry on 14th Street. Or head to North Shaw, where you’ll find Glen’s Garden Market, Bucketfeet—plus Warby Parker and Kit & Ace in close proximity. Just a block away is Cherry Blossom Creative, which is my go-to for easy gifts as it’s stocked full of thoughtful greeting cards and paper goods.