Time to get serious, y’all.
Every year, there seems to be an international panic and subsequent mad rush at Christmas to snatch up presents from giant chain stores including (but not limited to) Target, Kmart, and specialty stores like David Jones. While these “fast fashion” stores have great quality products that are sure to please the best of us, the effect on small businesses shows terribly and many struggle across the holiday season to keep up with their financial obligations. I’ve seen as much in my home town over the years as countless stores have closed down due to little to no business in comparison to the larger chain stores opening up nearby. It’s a pretty bleak reality.
That’s why this year I’ve decided to shop small. Over the last few weeks, I’ve made it my personal mission to source all of my Christmas presents from small business owners in Australia that hand make their products and show genuine gratitude for the sale, often sending personal messages about the progress of the item. I’ve been using Etsy to source most of my gifts, mostly because it’s got an easy to use search engine and it allows you to narrow down your search to your country (for me, Australia) but also because the sellers seem really genuine – I even know some of them!
So, I thought I’d throw together a list of wicked Australian Etsy stores that are seriously worth checking out as well as others I’ve come across in my market adventures.
- LillytalesShop from Melbourne, VIC
Lilly Tales Shop makes tonnes of Harry Potter related products including soy wax candles (check out that jar of glittery genius above!) and wooden bookmarks for all the Hermione Granger book worms out there. The seller also makes nifty woven wall hangings, too!
2. FlowerandFinch from Melbourne, VIC
Now, this store is really special. All of the jewellery is handmade with love my flower preserver, Miranda Ming, from Melbourne. She preserves flowers (among other things like butterfly wings) within the pages of books and then sets them in resin before turning them into necklaces. Her work reminds me so much of the flowers my mum and nan used to preserve, so wonderful!
3. dearlittledarling from Newcastle, NSW
I lived in Newcastle/the Newcastle area for two years, so I’m all about supporting local businesses from there! Dear Little Darling makes the most adorable stationary for any occasion… also, she makes cactus related stuff, so of course I’d love it.
4. Mermaids Kiss from Newcastle, NSW
Skulls for daaays. The genius wax sculptor behind Mermaids Kiss has a website where you can buy paraffin wax candles like the one pictured above (he also comes in purple, black, and yellow!) as well as other skull related products including Sugar Skull/Day of the Dead pillows. You can also catch up with Mermaids Kiss at Newcastle markets like the Hunt&Gather Markets.
5. Box Head is Dead from Newcastle, Australia
I nearly bought the entire stall last time I ran into Box Head is Dead owner, Alexandra Lynch. She makes the most interesting eclectic products; doll head pot plants, cow tooth necklaces, taxidermy ducklings, the list goes on. Everything is made and produced ethically, too, so you can be creepy without the addition of cruelty. You can contact Alexandra for more details via the email address on her Instagram page!
6. Pepper Ink from Brunswick, VIC
I totally didn’t know that these were temporary tattoos until quite recently, but there they are! The tattoos come in a back of seven and include flowers like poppies, forget-me-nots, lilacs, apple blossom and roses. They’re handmade and totally amazing, don’t you think?
7. Seaglass Collections from Perth, WA
So, these lovely sea glass necklaces are actually made by a friend of mine from Perth. The unique pieces were originally broken glass products that became gorgeous and smooth after an unknown amount of time being tossed about in the ocean. Caitlin makes them by hand and there aren’t many left, so be quick to purchase your very own sea glass necklace!
8. Crystal Mamma from Parkdale, VIC
Talk about luxurious. Crystal Mamma assembles hanging crystals of all shapes and sizes, sometimes even with Swarovski crystals. Unf.
9. Kuberstore from Brisbane, QLD
Kuberstore adds an Australian tang to all of their holiday products. Emily sells wall hangings, homewares, nest sculptures, and Christmas decorations made from a variety of materials including cast plaster and seedpods, even gum nuts like in the photo above!
10. Literary Tea Co. from Sydney, NSW
Two words: Tolkien Tea. I’m already sold, but if you’re not, there a huge range of different teas based on the literary flavours of influential writers including Scott Fitzgerald, William Shakespeare, and Jane Austen.
Feature image sourced from imgneed.com.