Shopping small, shopping local and shopping consciously has been on my agenda for the past few years – but as we end one of the most traumatic years in modern history, that takes on a whole new meaning. This festive season it’s even more important to support those small business that have perhaps struggled, discovered a new direction, thrived with ingenuity or simply launched as an escape from circumstance; not only are they often more innovative, designed with love and offer a more creative gifting solution, but your business means so much to them on a personal level.
I’m making an extra effort to shop small this year, and if you are too here are some of the most amazing businesses I think you need to know about… Spanning home, beauty, fashion, jewellery, food, drink and lifestyle categories, these 25 British businesses are sure to offer you and your loved ones the perfect gift this Christmas.
Hope & Blooms (Faux Flower Door Wreaths)
I’d been lusting over one of these beautiful creations for such a long time, but had my heart set on something for the Autumn months; when my chosen faux wreath finally arrived it was everything I anticipated and more. These make the most incredible gifts, or simply treat yourself to a festive arrangement you can enjoy year after year – an investment in your front door that will pay dividends.
The Recycled Candle Company (Sustainable Candles)
In an effort to reduce waste, this innovative company travels round to hotels, bars and restaurants in London to collect their old candles. They’re then melted down, cleaned, dyed and scented before being transformed into something both sustainable and beautiful. No two will ever be the same, but every one is created with love – making it a great gift for anyone.
Happy Blossoms (Dried Flower Arrangements)
It’s undoubtedly been the year of the dried flower, and their on-trend style is not going away anytime soon. If bland pampas isn’t your bag, or you want to inject a little more colour or texture into your home, then Happy Blossoms are the perfect compromise – a beautiful arrangement that keeps on giving. I bought a medium sized arrangement and actually split it into two, so why not do the same if you fancy gifting multiple people a little bit of dried flower love?
Crafted Pine (Wooden Homewares & Accessories)
A small family run business, Crafted Pine offers a huge array of homeware treats and kids accessories to whet your appetite. Some of my personal faves include their wooden wall vases (why not make your floral arrangement into art!) and their personalised plaques, but they also produce some beautiful bookends, shelves and toy boxes if there’s a child in your life who doesn’t need yet another box of Lego.
Penny & Me (Statement & Personalised Wall Art)
I could easily buy nearly everything in this virtual art gallery as the prints perfectly combine boldness, fun and uniqueness. Choose from a house number to display in the hallway, an inspirational quote for the office, illustrations for the bedroom or even rubber ducks for the bathroom; I guarantee you’ll find more than one thing you simply must have.
The Covent Co (Beauty Inspired Prints)
For the beauty addicts, I adore these ‘beauty shelf’ prints that would look great above a dressing table; the attention to detail is incredible, making these a truly unique piece of artwork to be treasured for years to come. I’m obsessed with the monochrome version.
FOOD & DRINK
Garçon Wines (Letterbox Sized Sustainable Wine Bottles)
Such a genius idea that’s never been more relevant than in 2020, Garçon Wines have launched the first ever (that I’m aware of) letterbox size wine that you can send direct to loved ones – or yourself! The plastic flat bottle is 100% recycled, 100% recyclable, 87% lighter and 40% smaller than your average bottle; plus, it tastes pretty good too. Not only does this make sending your mates a glass or three to ‘cheers’ with all the more practical, but it’s also far more environmentally friendly thanks to the reduced carbon footprint.
BakedIn (Letterbox Baking Subscription)
I started this myself during lockdown as a way of having something to both look forward to and keep me occupied, and it’s honestly been such a pleasure each month. BakedIn send a little box filled with everything you need to make that month’s chosen sweet treat (excluding dairy and fresh fruit) so all you need do is find an hour to get messy and get stuck in. They’ve now launched gift subscriptions, so you can send the gift of great bakes to someone you know needs any help they can get in the kitchen..!
(Get £5.00 off your first box HERE.)
Yumbles (Vegan & Gluten Free Local Treats)
If you’re not sure what you’re after or where to look, then Yumbles is a great way to treat someone special. Search from hundreds of vegan and gluten free offerings all over the UK, pick your chosen treat and have it shipped directly to you. I’ve got my eye on some vegan brownies!
Doughnut Time (Vegan Doughnuts & ‘Make Your Own’ Kits)
I mean, these probably don’t need any kind of introduction, but if you haven’t yet tried the absolute deliciousness of Doughnut Time then you need to get involved. I used to go out of my way to stop by their tiny shop on the way home from London, just to get a couple of £4.50 doughnuts – they’re that tasty. With so many flavours to choose from (my personal fave is the David Hassel-Biscoff and the Vegan Red Velvet) it’s hard to pick just a couple to fill your box, so it’s lucky there are also pre-made selections and even ‘make your own’ home decorating kits. Nobody would be immune to the gift giving power of doughnuts, especially now there are gingerbread men shaped ones for Christmas.
Rave Coffee (Ground Coffee Subscription)
Great coffee really does make the world go round, and Rave Coffee have created some of the best I’ve ever tried; rich, aromatic, fruity notes and unexpected delights, all from a steaming morning cup. Their affordable subscription means that daily hot beverage will always be top notch, delivering straight to the door of your loved one alongside educational keepsakes that will help them expand their coffee knowledge.
FASHION & BEAUTY
Tillyanna (Personalised Shopper Bags)
You may have already seen me raving about these on my Instagram, and with good reason. I love anything personalised, mainly because as a child I could never get anything with my name spelled correctly on, and this is just the ticket for anyone special in your life. Available in a multitude of sizes, colours, styles and designs, there’s sure to be the perfect option for anyone you have in mind. They can be used as shoppers, picnic hampers, storage solutions and so much more… So there’s a reason to buy one in every design too!
(You can get 20% off using code HAYLEYHALL20 too.)
Pawsome Paws Boutique (Unique Dog Accessories)
Archie has got a wardrobe almost as expansive as mine, and that’s thanks in part to this super cute dog accessories brand who turn something mundane into something super special. They have constant new additions that sell like hot cakes, ensuring the lucky pooch recipient is dressed in the absolute finest attire – from dinos and biscuits, to avocados and on-trend prints, with a little pup-kin spice thrown in for good measure, this is a brand you’ll get addicted to. And they have some fabulous human attire too.
Lola’s Apothecary (Bathing & Wellness)
Hailing from Devon and handmade with love, Lola’s Apothecary make some of the most beautiful bathing treats I’ve ever tried. From the most invigorating and expertly created scents, to the beautiful dried flowers that are infused within their oils, this is a brand that you’ll find hard to give away. Packaged so beautifully you don’t even have to gift wrap, everything on offer is a dream – but the body oil collection is especially lustworthy.
Oh My Clumsy Heart (Stackable Jewellery Creations)
There are a million different jewellery brands out there, but what I love about Oh My Clumsy Heart is the fact you’re encourage to create your ‘capsule’ collection that allows you to either mix and match or layer. With multiple purchases you get a discount too (up to 25%) which makes this a perfect way to create something special for someone you love, or a great way to treat multiple people in your life and get rewarded with a nice saving! They have oodles of delicate and on-trend pieces for seriously affordable prices… I love.
Freckle & French (Design Your Own Earrings)
Jewellery is a great gift; crafts are a great gift; combining the two makes an even better gift! I love the idea of wrapping up something both fun and practical, and this ticks both of those boxes – the ‘naked’ clay earrings come with paints and tools of your choice, to ensure a gift that’s perfectly suited to the recipient. They can paint on whatever design they like and wear their earrings with pride, knowing they had a hand in their creation.
Lisa Angel (Personalised Jewellery & Accessories)
I’ve got so many pieces of Lisa Angel jewellery in my collection, both bought for myself and as gifts. They add personalisation, initials or names to so many of their pieces to make them extra special, while their designs are timeless, elegant and feminine. With so many covetable necklaces, earrings and bracelet it can be hard to choose – but you can’t go wrong with their personalised double hearts.
Luna Charles (Luxe Jewellery & Accessories)
Giving a nod to the wonder of space, stars and energy found in crystals, this is a collection of accessories rather unique and unexpected. Their designs are unusual but still incredibly wearable, bridging the gap between high street and super luxe perfectly; I’m very much into the chunky but still elegant crystal pendants, as well as their moon phase chockers.
Constellation (Constellation Inspired Jewellery)
Still in its infancy with only a few pieces to choose from, that doesn’t make this shop any less covetable. Everything is inspired by the constellation of stars, which in times of adversity we’re known to collectively turn to to remind ourselves of the bigger picture. I’d love to layer up some of the necklaces and would easily wear them all year round.
Non Plastic Beach (Sustainable Lifestyle Collections)
If you know someone who wants to start living a more sustainable life but has maybe doesn’t know where to start, this brand makes it super simple with packs and bundles suited to every area of your life. From bathroom essentials, beauty products, kitchen re-useables, coffee solutions and everything between, this makes a thoughtful and eco-concious gift.
To Home From London (Cute Illustrated Mugs & Accessories)
With a slogan like ‘redefining souvenirs’ you know you’re in for something quite unexpected, and To Home From London definitely deliver. Choose from mugs and tote bags adorned with illustrations of your favourite movie characters, or coasters and prints of your favourite London districts if you’re after something more sophisticated. Great for a London lover or resident, these definitely aren’t just for tourists!
The Inspired Stories (Journals & Personalised Stationary)
I wouldn’t like to anticipate how many unused 2020 diaries are lingering in desk drawers around the world, but that doesn’t make a journal or planner any less of a brilliant gift. The Inspired Stories have thankfully thought this one through and now offer a dateless version so it’s lockdown proof, as well as providing personalisation. Their muted tones and fresh modern feel ensure this is a very special gift for any lady.
Mission Better (Sustainable Lifestyle Boxes)
As we step into a world where we’re all trying to make a difference, Mission Better acts as a first step to just that by offering an array of lifestyle, home, beauty and even pet products that reduce waste. I may be biased, but I love the little doggy gift box intended to help even our furry friends make good choices – with toys and treats, it’s a great box to leave under the tree to keep them occupied on Christmas morning.
Old Flour House (Personalised Decorations & Kitchen Labels)
How many of us have organised the hell out of our cupboards during lockdown? And how many more have taken pleasure from watching The Home Edit on Netflix? These personalised clay kitchen labels make the perfect gift, allowing your tidy loved one to keep their storage looking even more perfectly arranged; they just slip around jars and baskets for effortless style. Old Flour House also offer personalised tree decorations for anyone recognising a milestone (think first Christmases in a new home, with a baby or pet!)
Iglu Coffee Cups (Reusable Heat Resistant Cups)
There are about twenty reusable cups lingering at the back of my kitchen cupboard, because so many of them are too clunky, messy or unsuitable for taking out and about. The Iglu cup, however, is the perfect addition to any household as their designs are sleek, comfortable to hold, practical to drink from and amazing at keeping in the heat; an hour after I make a cup it’s still piping hot inside! Available in a multitude of colours, this would be such a great gift for any commuters or coffee lovers who can’t wait to get their caffeine hit.
I could keep adding and adding to this list, but these 25 brands are those I think are truly special in their own way and would make a perfect, yet unexpected, gift for a loved one.
If you have any other suggestions of great independent or small British businesses you love, please do leave them below.