Small Business Gift Guide – Our Favorite Independent Designers

Shop small businesses for Christmas this year!

We’re big on shopping small here at Aeolidia, and value handmade goods and well-designed products from independent small businesses. Here are some of our favorites this year: things we’ll be gifting and hoping to get. I love how these lists give you a little peek into each person’s style, as well! Which Aeolidian do you match best with?

Katherine’s picks

Katherine has been working on our content marketing, creating courses and educational downloads for us, as well as writing for the blog and putting together our portfolio posts.

I’m moving away from Chicago next year after living here for 20 years. Sad face! We have an awesome maker community here that I will miss. Here are some of my favorite recent Chicago makers.

Tabletop Planter with Wood Stand | Midway Weekender Gym Bag

National Parks Poster | Toddler Dress – Ikat Heart

Little Fire Ceramics planter: You can’t go wrong getting someone a plant, and a pot to put it in. I’m a sucker for wood + ceramic pieces, too. I love the minimal design of these.

Po Campo bag: I’m not a cyclist, but I’m friends with so many people who are. I love Maria’s company because she makes stylish bags that are SUPER practical because they attach to bikes. And they even have a couple that aren’t super bike-centric, so you can give them to anyone in your life.

Sorry Design poster: If I could start my life over I’d be a screen print designer. I love these designs from Chicago-based Sorry Design — not your typical poster art. Classy, and I always think cool posters make the perfect gifts.

Lilla Barn dress: If you’re looking for the perfect gift for a little toddler, Lilla Barn makes the most amazing Scandinavian-inspired children’s clothing, all handmade in the U.S.A.

Ann’s picks

Ann is an Aeolidia designer, creating brand identities and websites for our clients.

I am featuring all Southern based businesses for my list.

Bourbon Barrel Bracelet | Vintage Home Goods

Frasier Fir Statement Tree Candle | Deer Doll “Jasper”

Scout Southern Market – bracelet: Anything from Scout Southern Market from right here in Beaufort, SC. I love absolutely everything in their store and can always find the perfect gift – not to mention they have amazing Sweet Tea Floats!

Indigo Collection vintage: My friend and former co-worker started an awesome vintage shop called Indigo Collection. She carries unique and interesting pieces for the home. Another Southern based business for the win!

Candlefish candle: I love a Lowcountry small business! Candlefish started in Charleston and now has a location in Atlanta. I’m a candle lover and these are the best!

Blabla Kids doll: One of my go-to kiddo and baby gifts, Blabla. An Atlanta based knit children’s product line, their dolls are some of my son’s most treasured friends. And you can’t believe how soft they are!

Natalia’s picks

Natalia is our copywriter, and helps our clients brainstorm business names, write compelling product descriptions, and describe their businesses winningly for About pages, among other things.

Wiltshire Sage Berry Flower Collar | Natalia Jewelry Set

We Are One | Ponderlily Planner

Silly Buddy collar: This flower collar by Silly Buddy for my pups!

Kate Winternitz jewelry: This is a local Austin jewelry designer whose work I’ve loved and worn for year. Guess what I just realized one of her new collections is named? It must be destiny!

Baggio Ardon art: This gorgeous artwork by Latinx artist Baggio Ardon Design celebrating culture and unity.

Ponderlily planner: I’m a planner NERD. I’ve used the same one for years but Ponderlily’s has me anticipating their web launch so I can place an order.

Sam’s picks

Sam is our Accounts Manager and is the friendly voice you will talk to as you get your project set up. She’ll also make sure it stays on track and she keeps everything humming busily in our hive.

Seed Collection Hardy Annual MixKakomi Ceramic Rice Cooker

Mini Notepad, Gold Little Note | Finger Knit Trivet Kit

Floret Flower seeds: Pretty packaging + the hope of cut flowers!

Kaufmann Mercantile – rice cooker: The perfect rice cooker.

Sugar Paper notepad: For popping notes into lunches.

Flax and Twine knitting kit:  fun and useful DIY kit.

Caroline’s picks

Caroline helps our clients with one-on-one marketing and business consultations. When a business owner is almost-but-not-quite ready to work with us, we’ll often set her up with Caroline first, so she’ll be prepared for success.

2018 Zodiac Calendar | Daily Essentials Set

Floral Trumpet Clutch | Monarch Cowl Kit

Wholesome Soul calendar: Illustrated zodiac calendar

Pure Luxe Apothecary skincare: What gal wouldn’t love some luxe, all natural skincare?

Harvest Crafts bag: Darling handcrafted clutch with leather details.

Pam Powers Knits kit: If only this knitting kit came with some free time.

Christine’s picks

Christine is a web and brand identity designer extraordinaire, and has been designing for Aeolidia clients for years!

Leather Card HolderMezzaluna Necklace

Nature’s Day BookWalnut Taper Candle Holder

Sugar Paper card holder: To carry my business cards in style (bonus if monogrammed!).

Rare Device – necklace: A pretty necklace simple enough for everyday.

Mapamundi Kids – book: A book to browse with my kiddos.

American Heirloom candle holder: For all those dinner parties I will someday throw.

Holly’s picks

Holly takes care of our clients and keeps all the details of projects organized. There are a lot of moving parts to a design project, and Holly keeps these under control while keeping our clients informed.

Geometric Oregon Necklace | Doughnuts iPhone Case

Change My Life Canvas Pouch | Mini Cat Wall Calendar

Crafty Wonderland – necklace: For the Oregonian at heart.

Frankie & Claude phone case: For the funky foodie friend

Emily McDowell pouch: For your Sephora-addicted friend.

Gingiber calendar: For your cat-loving co-worker.

Shoshanna’s picks

Shoshanna is a web developer, bringing our designs to life as fully functioning websites with the features needed to make sales.

Emerald Stacking Ring | Common Grounds Coffee Candle

Backyard Party Notepad | Hand Painted Green Mountain Mug

Dani Barbe ring: Emerald stacking ring in gold or silver.

Portage Bay Goods – candle: Real coffee candle from Seattle.

Hester & Cook notepad: Party birds notepad.

Common Deer – mug: Hand painted mountain mug from Vermont

Kelly’s picks

Kelly is a web developer, and makes sure the strategic features we plan at the beginning of a project are all working well by launch.

Calico Cat Enamel Pin | Signature Candle, Holiday

You’re Really Pretty Mug | Opal Aquamarine Studs

Gingiber enamel pin.

Sugar Paper holiday candle.

Frankie & Claude mug.

Danie Barbe earrings.

Arianne’s picks

Arianne is captain and founder at Aeolidia, and is responsible for steering the ship and making sure we’re exceeding expectations at every turn.

The more handmade things I have in my home, the happier I am. Here are a few things I would joyfully welcome into my Konmari-ed house.

Boughs and Blossoms 2018Day Bag – Rain/Wax

Staffa Scarf | Choose Joy Banner

Felix Doolittle calendar: I’m always popping open my calendar app to see what the date is. I’d rather glance across my desk to this most beautiful calendar by Felix Doolittle.

Bookhou bag: I’ve been following Arounna’s work almost since I started my business and love her style and artistic curiosity.

Collingwood Norris scarf: I love scarves. Knitted in Scotland, a woolen rainbow for your neck.

Schoolhouse Electric – banner: A daily happy reminder, courtesy of this special Secret Holiday Co banner made for Schoolhouse Electric.

Shop Small This Holiday Season

We know Aeolidia readers value shopping small already! I hope this list gives you some new ideas and shops to check out.

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