As much as I love a good gift guide, my favorite guide to always put together is the Small Business Gifts for Everyone on Your List. As a female running my own company, surrounded by a mom and sister running their own businesses supporting small, local businesses is important but this year it hits a bit differently. Pandemic aside, I have found myself surrounded by amazing, brilliant women who are launching businesses and side hustles left and right. I’m so honored to know them.
So please consider supporting small, local businesses this season!! More to come but this is the first of a few gift guides! Have a female owned brand you want to introduce me to?
1. LAUNCHING TODAY!!!
Luxe gifting, made easy. Always, The Modern Concierge came to be as a result of the current events leaving a void with no in-person celebrations. Stephanie, who leads a team of 20+ makeup artists and hairstylists for weddings and events in Dallas, TX realized that there was a need to spread joy and celebrate life every day, even while at home. Stephanie, one to always give the best gifts to friends, began work on developing AMC. A modern day concierge. She wanted to create something special that she would want to give and receive. A gift not on the mass market. A thoughtful gift that could be given to a friend for a birthday, a friend in need of a little extra TLC, a gift for the new mom or a gift for no other reason than to brighten someone’s day.
A few of my favorites are The Life Detox Box (it is 2020 right?!), The Breakup Box (all that’s missing is tequila!), The Pamper Yourself Box and The Customize Box. Plus she has a whole shopping section to get any goodie you need for you or a girlfriend!
2. Mother Oxford – Kelsey and I met through a mutual friend what feels like decades ago though I know it wasn’t. We bonded over her beautiful ballet inspired activewear line, Belle Force and from there the rest is history. We popped into a few SoHo House Friday sessions, met for workouts and coffee and now here we are. Kelsey is the founder of not only Belle Force but also the founder of Mother Oxford. Did I mention she’s a mom, wife and renovating one of the most charming homes upstate I’ve ever seen?
Mother Oxford is designed and manufactured in Manhattan with cotton performance fabric developed in France. Enter this classically flattering, roomy button-up Oxford made with spill friendly performance cotton to meet the demands of motherhood and life in general. Its versatile silhouette makes it effortless tied up with a flowy skirt and just as fun untucked with jeans or worn over work clothes as a coverup. Now even the most stressful mothering moments are more chill. This classic white is everything and check out their holiday collection over on Instagram!
3. Surprisingly Baked – I met Ginny years and years ago during a workout class at our favorite, Body Conceptions. Over the years we stayed in touch even worked together with Mahri! Ginny might just be one of the winners coming out of 2020’s roller coaster year! After getting her dream job in the hospitality business in 2019, she moved to the D.C. area. A few months later, the pandemic struck — and Surprisingly Baked was born. Like many other Americans, Ginny started baking during the quarantine as a way to curb stress. She and her fiancé, Guy Cook, tested and tasted brownies, cookies and other treats. She began experimenting with cookies and brownies baked with surprises inside, including Oreos, Nutella, caramel, frosting and more. When Ginny’s corporate job finally shifted from “working at home” to “furloughed” to “laid off,” she decided to go all in. In just a few short months, demand for Surprisingly Baked’s tasty treats has grown, as has the brand. How SWEET is this story!? A few of my favorites? The ultimate sampler box, The Fulla Frosting Box because OMG this looks like heaven and of course I think everyone should try out the Holiday Sampler box.
4. Made ByKWest – Kira and I met a while back at a fun workout event hosted at Bandier, we chatted about our love of wellness but also travel. She’s one of those women you meet and are inspired instantly, whether it’s on the conversation of travel or talking about side hustles and bigger plans! Kira launched Made ByKwest. Kira is a Black woman who seeks to create functional, beautiful and impactful accessories.
Each piece is designed to serve a need and also make an impact. She measures her success based on the impact she makes within her online community and now through her business as well. She was inspired by her travels and workouts to launch The World Collection at a time when travel came to a halt due to COVID. Kira is detail oriented and has worked hard to create a product she can stand behind. Kira tests each piece herself and wears her pendant and mask chain daily. A few of my favorites that will make the most thoughtful gifts for anyone on your list are The World Ring and The World Necklace – though all four pieces are beautifully designed! Plus she just launched a mask collection!
5. Shop La Vie Ann Rose, whose founder Angie Niles, I have known now for a few years. She’s the type of person you meet and just immediately know that you want to be friends with her. You want to also live her very Parisian vibe life, you want to meet up at L’auderee, and eat sugary treats, sip coffee and reminisce about being back in Paris. Until that can happen she has launched a beautiful print shop full of lovely prints of life in Paris. These are exclusive illustrations from her wonderful book BRIGHT LIGHTS PARIS. I’ve linked a few of my favorites here Bright Lights Cover Art (exclusive!) and this French Lingerie, I’ve got it coming for above my lingerie dresser and can’t wait!
6. Hilary Sheinbaum’s The Dry Challenge
The Dry Challenge: How to Lose the Booze for Dry January, Sober October, and Any Other Alcohol-Free Month(HarperCollins, Dec. 29) is about how to successfully complete a dry month and the benefits of doing so, which is perfect for Dry January (after indulging during the holidays) as well as starting 2021 fresh, following an abysmal 2020!
Lo Bosworth wrote the foreword and chapters include:
- What You’ll Gain When You Lose the Booze — including valuable assets like time and money (not to mention clearer skin and better sleep)
- Shaken, Not Stirred (and Hold the Liquor) – Non-Alcoholic Beverage Recipes
- Thinking Outside the Box(ed Wine) – A Month of Activities, without Alcohol
- D(N)UI – Dating (Not) Under the Influence — Date ideas beyond “going for a drink” and insights about how alcohol influences relationships
7. Tracy A. Davis Fine Art Photography was founded by Tracy, who I’ve now known for likely over 6 years. We share a passion for exploring, world travels and sometimes solo trip! Tracy is a 30-something NYC based travel and lifestyle photographer whose work is just stunning. Featuring original travel photography, her goal is to evoke a sense of wanderlust and bring beauty to any space in your home through fine art prints. Check out her Instagram and follow her travels HERE.
8. Pretty Connected Mask Chains was founded by Lara Eurdolia who is one of the smartest, most driven women I know. We’ve been friends for years after constantly running into each other at all of the never ending NYC events. As two female entrepreneurs we immediately clicked and the rest is history! Lara was always known for being on the go, Pretty Connected came about as she was frustrated she could never find a strap that wasn’t overly branded, or complemented her style. Wanting to easily be able to interchange her straps based on her outfit, Lara started creating her own. After receiving a lot of interest, she launched a collection. Among the many uses of her multi-purpose chain includes wearing it as a mask holder. In an effort to give back, 15% of all sales were originally being donated to Covid relief efforts focusing on hunger relief we have since expanded our donation range to address a range of social issues. I’m pretty smitten with all of my PC chains and use them on both my cameras and masks! This recent collab is amazing!!
9. Shop Dreamy Goods – It’s no surprise that SDG is on this list. Founded by two of my NYC gals, Amanda of East Coast Fox and Alexandra Machover our story of our friendship would take up 4 blog posts! The girls created Shop Dreamy Goods as a way to fuel their love for unique vintage pieces. I just picked up a few mismatched pink glasses that I can’t wait to put to use oh-so-soon. Check them out HERE.0