Local Holiday Gift Suggestions

Real Connections on Central Avenue in East Orange.

With the holiday season upon us, gift shopping can be fun—or stressful.

Finding the perfect gifts for loved ones might be a challenge but Essex County offers much when it comes to gifts that are unique, original, and thoughtful. And you’ll feel great supporting local businesses. The following are a few shopping ideas:

Saturday, Nov. 25, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., in celebration of Small Business Saturday, there’s a Maplewood Vintage Show at The Woodland, 60 Woodland Road. Join them to shop vintage clothing, jewelry, accessories, and local artists.

A few weeks later, also at The Woodland, on Sunday, Dec. 17, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. it’s the Handmade Holiday; shop for pottery and folk art, handcrafted
jewelry, embroidery and crochet, and wearable art.

Dec. 9 and 10, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Maplewood Arts & Culture will present a Winter Art Sale at 1978 Arts Center, 1978 Springfield Ave., Maplewood. The sale will feature fine art and designer items.

To support a Black-owned business, The BrownMill Atelier storefront of BrownMill Co., 49 Halsey St., Newark, is a cool place to shop. They have collections of beanies, hoodies, and overstitched socks in various hues. To learn more, visit them at: https://www.brownmill.co/.

BrownMill in Newark.

Words Bookstore at 179 Maplewood Ave., Maplewood has an extensive variety of books of all genres. What makes them special is their mission, engaging readers of all ages and interests, welcoming patrons and employees with autism.

Frames and Framers at 12 Main St. Millburn, offers fine custom framing, art and photo restoration, and more. There’s a world class selection of frames, from cutting edge designs to traditional favorites and unique handcrafted one-of-a-kind showpieces. They specialize in every aspect of framing—original art, photography, prints, posters, sports memorabilia, collectibles, family heirlooms, and much more. Check out Frames and Framers at https://www.framesandframers.com/.

City Workshop Men’s Supply Co. is a small business at 104 Baker St., Maplewood, specializing in men’s clothing. Learn more at https://cityworkshopmsc. com/.
Another option for men’s clothing is New Creations at 564 Central Ave, East Orange. An independent store offering men’s clothing from shoes to hats and everything in between. Styles range from formal wear to business clothing to streetwear.

For the music lover in your life, SOPAC’s Holiday Shop is open until Dec. 24. They have artist-signed posters and photos of past SOPAC artists, SOPAC merch like hats, mugs, and face masks, and so much more! Artists available include Indigo Girls, Carrie Fisher, Richard Lewis, Dionne Warwick, Judy Collins, Suzanne Vega, and David Crosby to name a few. SOPAC is located at 1 SOPAC Way, South Orange. Visit them at https://www.sopacnow.org/

Speaking of music, Scotti’s Record Shops, 351 Springfield Ave., Summit, is participating in Record Store Day on Black Friday—Nov. 24. They will be opening at 9 a.m. with complimentary coffee and treats. They will not be taking phone orders until record collectors online are served first. Christmas albums on the exclusive collector’s list include: “The Beach Boys’ Christmas Album,” and “Everyday is Christmas” by Sia.

Did you know that Essex County’s Turtle Back Zoo has a gift shop? For the animal lover in your life, visit Turtle Back Zoo at 560 Northfield Ave., West Orange, and check out all the exotic stuffed animals, toys, and games in their gift shop. And if you know someone who is truly a “zoo fan” you can treat them to a gift card which can be redeemed for General Admission or Zoo Education Programming. Visit the legendary Turtle Back Zoo at https://turtlebackzoo.com/

Do you know someone who loves custom made dolls? Latin American Treasures LLC is based in Newark and works with talented Indigenous and Afro-Latinx artisans, creating an array of handmade dolls. They are happy to support those who have disabilities.

If you are looking to bring a smile to someone’s face, check out their website and see their treasures adored by young children as well as senior citizens at https://latinamericantreasures. com/.

Words bookstore in Maplewood.

  east orange, Holiday shopping, Maplewood

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