A NoDa Holiday Gift Guide


I’ve written the annual holiday shopping article for the last few years. It’s a pleasure and honor to recognize the many hard-working small business establishments in our community. Good journalism would demand a new angle and a good hook for this article; however, the hook and angle are still very much the same: small businesses represent a vital component to the U.S. economy, and we as neighbors serve as patrons to assure these businesses survive and thrive. They provide local jobs as businesses themselves and as businesses who use the services of other local businesses. And, on the personal front, they beat the big box stores hands down for unique gifts.

Here’s a rundown of a few ideas:

  • Gift cards are ubiquitous these days. Most of NoDa’s restaurants, breweries, bars, coffee shops, and retail shops offer gift cards or certificates. Don’t forget about the cool brand wear at our local breweries—from t-shirts to hats and coozies.

  • How about show tickets to The Neighborhood Theater or the Evening Muse?

  • Pura Vida Worldly Art has so many options, where to start? I love their textiles. The last time I was in, I noticed some kitchen towels made from the same fabric as their larger bed covers. Owner Teresa has an eye for unique items such as those metal bird sculptures. (Of course, I love them, they are robins!)

  • Love art and local artists? Ruby’s Gift is our trifecta of gifting goodness: a local retailer offering lots of unique items made locally—I mean really locally—by artists living and working in NoDa, such as David French prints, Docklands Design posters and shirts, and Day Hixon angel wings (a personal fave), with interesting and unique options that you will certainly not find at the mall.

  • Looking for something truly magickal? Create a personal connection at Curio, Craft & Conjure by choosing a crystal, a candle, or a deck of tarot cards.

  • For the more fashion-forward gift needs, try Bartique and Jade Sky (tucked away on the east side of North Davidson Street up near Craighead Road) or Johnny Fly for sunglass and optical wear.

  • Need to pull together a last-minute hostess gift? Try Salud Beer Shop for unique brews. Divine Barrel, Bold Missy, or Protagonist all offer crowlers/growlers. Hit up Bodega or Local Loaf for a nice bottle of wine. Throw in some pimiento cheese and crackers and you have a gift even Scrooge would appreciate.

Consider yourself challenged to now venture forth in NoDa and shop local. Happy Holidays, NoDa friends and neighbors! Here’s to a great 2020.