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Shop Local 2020: Support Philly Makers, Now More Than Ever

Skip the big box stores and support Philly businesses with these great gift ideas!

If this year has taught us anything, it is how interconnected we truly are, and how important our community is. The pandemic has hit our economy hard, and small businesses are even more vulnerable. So this year when you’re shopping for the holidays, skip the big-box-bought presents, and get something much more personal and special while supporting local businesses!


Our community is bustling with artists and crafters and designers of unique and original wares to buy or gift.  It is impossible to list all of our favorites. Just rounding up all the best Gritty-themed items would take all week! But here are some of the best of the best (including plenty of Gritty).

Ana Thorne

From pillows to apparel to facemasks to Gritty ornaments (oh, yes), there is Philly love all over Ana Thorne’s designs! You are sure to put a smile on the face of your lucky recipients, whether local or just homesick. Order online or buy at Philadelphia Independents in Old City, Nice Things Handmade in East Passyunk, and more boutiques around town!



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You’ve gifted a tasteful LOVE statue ornament a million times, but how about a PPA Citation? Or a Wawa coffee? Or Tastykakes? Or even Gritty with a facemask (because 2020)? Jawnaments go beyond the basic Philly symbols and goes to for some of the real Philly touchstones.


Pals Socks


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Can cute mismatched critter socks change the world? Hannah Lavon, founder of Pals Socks, certainly hopes so. The Northern Liberties based Pals Socks, with their inclusive slogan “We don’t match,” hopes so. “We inspire humans young and old to be friends with someone different. It’s a sentiment that I think you could agree there should be more of as we change perceptions and keep toes warm,” Lavon tells us. We love their fun mix-and-match approach—and their new Christmas socks! They even make some of their styles in adult sizes so we can get in on the fun! Order online, or find at the Made in Philadelphia Holiday Market this season!

Julia Max Designs


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If you’re looking for whimsical Philly-themed decor, clothing, cards, and more, look no further than Julia Max’s irresistible illustrations. You’ll find Philly sports mascots, iconic scenes like Jeweler’s Row lit up for the holidays, and much more, all with her signature sense of humor and heart. There are even Gritty onesies! Order online; and find at Nice Things Handmade in East Passyunk.

Shibe Vintage Sports


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Shibe was founded by Philly sports fans, for Philly sports fans. When you walk into the small Midtown Village shop, you can immediately tell that it’s the real deal—seats from the old Philly ballpark from which the store gets its name are there, along with other memorabilia. We met one of the owners and his little boy at Nest years ago, and have been hooked on their soft vintage-y tees ever since. You can find clothing and other fun items featuring Philly sports teams for men, women, and kids. We even found Gritty dolls and a Gritty candle there! And of course, they captured our hearts with their “Destroyer of Worlds” Gritty shirt. Order online, or shop at their Center City storefront at 137 S. 13th St. 

Philly Word Art


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Artist Dan Duffy has been making unique art out of words for about a decade, celebrating Philadelphia landmarks, sports, and public figures. From far away, his work looks like a straightforward illustration, but up close, you can see that each image is comprised of words that give the picture deeper meaning. For example, the Phillies World Series piece is illustrated with the date, score, and opponent of every Phillies game from the 2008 season, while the LOVE Statue contains people, places, and quotes that are unique to Philadelphia. Duffy has expanded his work to non-Philly-specific work like musicians and historical figures (and even other cities’ sports victories), so you can even find something for a non-local friend! Order online.

South Fellini


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“No one likes us, no one likes us, no one likes us, we don’t care!” Jason Kelce’s iconic speech has been immortalized in knit form, with a pompom on top! South Fellini celebrates Philly realness, from sports to Wawa, and everything in between. Grab a Jawn enamel pin, “Jabroni Repellent” hand sanitizer (because 2020), a neighborhood mug, or any number of quirky Philadelphia-centric gifts. Order online, or visit their storefronts in East Passyunk and Fashion District Philadelphia. We’ve even seen some of their offerings at our local Whole Foods!


Philly Tarot Deck



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From Philly’s landmarks to athletes to pop culture icons, this very special 78-card tarot deck created by artist James Boyle celebrates Philly in a very unique way. You can also purchase signed prints of your favorites! Buy online or at the Made in Philadelphia Holiday Market.


Duross & Langel

117 S. 13th St.


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 Midtown Village’s Duross & Langel has the best handmade spa and skincare products, from almost-too-pretty-to-use sliced soaps to facial masks, and much more. We love their Sugar Scrubs (especially the Lemon Verbena). They make your dull winter skin soft, smell heavenly, and are all-natural. Order online, or shop at their Center City storefront at 117 S. 13th St.

Aurora Grace Chocolates

517 S. Fifth St. (delivery also available)



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You cannot go wrong with a gorgeous box of painted bonbons or colorful macarons from Aurora Grace. These treats are as beautiful and giftworthy as they are delicious. You can order daily for curbside pickup from noon—4 pm, or if your giftee lives in range, send them delivery online via Caviar.




Lead photograph by Laura Swartz.

Contributing Writer