Two seasonal markets return this winter to continue the holiday tradition at Philadelphia's City Hall.
There are more than 150 vendors across the two markets, including a large group of local makers sharing unique gift ideas.
The Christmas Village German Market has taken over Love Park and spread across the North apron and courtyard of City Hall. The market is a mix of international and local small business owners.
You'll find a beer garden and food inspired by the German theme. Magic Makers Marketing Collective is a group of seven Philadelphia-based Black and Brown-owned businesses that will share a booth over the course of 32 days. Each business will rotate every four days at the market. Adorned by Aisha is a jewelry maker based out of Northern Liberties who creates vintage pieces inspired by her grandmother's jewelry.
The Made in Philadelphia Holiday Market returns to Dilworth Park with gift ideas from local makers like Really Reel Ginger. The family-owned business creates a variety of products with ginger as the core ingredient, combined with superfruits and other creative items. It is the fourth year for Pals socks at the market sharing the company's mission that you don't have to match to be friends. The mismatched socks are a great stocking stuffer for adults and kids.
Christmas Village | Facebook | Instagram
Love Park, 1501 John F. Kennedy Boulevard, Philadelphia, PA 19102
Made in Philadelphia Holiday Market | Facebook | Instagram
Dilworth Park, 1 South 15th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19102
Adorned by Aisha | Facebook | Instagram
Really Reel Ginger | Facebook | Instagram
Magic Makers Marketing Collective
Pals Socks | Facebook | Instagram
Chester County offers holiday fun, food, and gifts galore
Located in what is known as "the Countryside of Philadelphia", Chester County has a lot to offer this time of year.
From shopping to dining, towns like West Chester and Kennett Square bring a pleasant experience with great finds.
Walkable, quaint streets await visitors who make the short trip to this bucolic region just west of the Philly metro area.
Chester County Visitor's Bureau | Facebook | Instagram
Holiday shopping at Philadelphia's Museum stores
For the truly cultured loved ones on your gift list, Philadelphia's museum stores offers an array of unique gifts.
The African American Museum of Philadelphia has four galleries to explore so the gift of a membership is always a good bet. Plus there are gift shops onsite and online where you'll find everything from Good Trouble hats to motivational 'Slay Girl Slay' mugs and a broad selection of books for adults and kids.
The shop showcases local vendors while also celebrating the African diaspora with items like a Harriet Tubman medallion.
African American Museum of Philadelphia (AAMP) | Online Gift Shop | Facebook | Instagram
701 Arch Street, Philadelphia, Pa. 19106
AAMP Kwanzaa events
Sunday, Dec. 26, 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m.: The First Day of Kwanzaa
Thursday, Dec. 30, 10 a.m.-12 p.m.|
The Barnes Foundation has a special exhibition showcasing the often overlooked French impressionist, Suzanne Valadon. You can learn her amazing story and then shop a collection of gifts inspired by her art, from notecards to tote bags and pins and prints of the paintings that she made.
The Barnes has a custom print program, too. Or you can buy your favorite work of art on Christmas stockings, face masks, note cards and even socks.
But the shops biggest seller this season? A pencil. A museum store association limited-edition collaboration with Blackwing pencils that has pencil collectors around the world going wild.
Barnes Foundation | Gift of Art Classes | Custom Print Shop | Facebook | Instagram
2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, Pa. 19130
With its recently completed expansion, the Philadelphia Museum of Art now has three gift shops, and each is totally different.
The Main Store has a wide selection of gifts based on the museum's galleries and Made in Philly finds like birdhouses built from colorful recycled wood, handmade jewelry, cutting boards, ceramic tiles and mugs and the hugely popular Philly tarot deck created by local illustrator James Boyle.
The museum commissioned an exclusive Philly Tarot calendar and a T-shirt.
The brand new Design store is located right next to the museum's new modern and contemporary galleries. It is filled with items sourced on global shopping trips, which means the kids section is stocked with top toys from around the world.
The second new store is right across the hall, stocked with inspirations from the museum's early American galleries. About 60 percent of everything in this shop is locally made, like the candy bar crafted by Shane's confectionary in Old City and cookie cutters designed by a local tinsmith to replicate those in the collection.
There are handcrafted cherry and walnut mirrors made in Philadelphia and coats made of old quilts, sewn by a woman who calls herself Lady Lancaster.
Philadelphia Museum of Art | Museum Gift Shops | Instagram
2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, Pa. 19130
Different mercantile gift ideas in and around Philadelphia
For the holiday season, why not shop for a local and rare gift? We head to different mercantile shops all across the Delaware Valley to show you some unique gift ideas.
First up is Harvey Oak Mercantile in Swarthmore. Owner Shannon Elliott turned the mercantile into a full lifestyle boutique that her community needed. She has a make your own terrarium corner and also sells vintage photo-horns from a local couple who enjoys wood making. Harvey Oak Mercantile or HOM for short, is named after two streets in the area. You'll find local Swarthmore goods, candles, jewelry, clothing, and many more handmade gifts.
Magnolia Dreams Mercantile in Birdsboro opened its doors this summer. Owner Carrie McCarty already has over 60 different vendors in her space. The size and many rooms of her shop allow her to bring in different vendors from all over the area. The store is currently ready for the holiday season with Christmas décor and gifts. Magnolia Dreams also sells candy, dog treats, paint, signs, jewelry, and home décor to name a few. Mostly all the products are handmade and customizable.
Mercantile at Doylestown is a 25,000-square-foot space dedicated to makers. With nearly 140 vendors, the mercantile allows the creators to set up their own area and personalize it. Rich in its Bucks County roots, the mercantile sells local goods, from coffee to clothing, and is complete with a food market and full-service bar.
A different kind of mercantile is NextFab. Located in North Philadelphia, NextFab is a professional-level makers space. From technologists to artists, NextFab is a membership-based space that provides its makers with the tools they need to create. Their 2021 Holiday Gift Guide is filled with gifts for sale from their makers, including handmade jewelry, manhole cover coasters and Fishtown's own Fishtown Signs. Sales manager Anna Solomon says it's the closest you can get to buying something from your very own neighbor.
Harvey Oak Mercantile| Facebook | Instagram
102 Park Ave, Swarthmore PA 19081
Magnolia Dreams Mercantile | Facebook | Instagram
345 W Main Street, Birdsboro PA 19508
Mercantile at Doylestown| Facebook | Instagram
444 N Main Street, Doylestown PA 18901
NextFab| Facebook| Instagram
1800 N American Street, Philadelphia PA 19122
Fuugs Woodworking is carving out locally rooted gifts this holiday season
Give a locally rooted gift this holiday season, made with trees from our own backyard.
Married couple Greg Fuguet and Kristen Snow run Fuugs, a woodworking shop in Kensington. From their indoor studio, the pair design furniture such as chairs, tables and stools to smaller wares.
It's all made with trees grown right here in Philadelphia. Fuugs partnered with Awbury Arboretum in Germantown to turn the Arboretum's downed timber into works of art.
For the holiday season, the pair is carving out small ware gifts like the Black Walnut French rolling pins, Maple serving boards and wooden candle holders.
You can also find their work on display at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Fuugs Woodworking |Facebook | Instagram
Maken North, 3525 I Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19134
Mingle Mocktails adds holiday cheer minus the alcohol
'Beverage entrepreneur' Laura Taylor has a solution for imbibing alcohol-free, this holiday season or any time.
After Taylor quit drinking six years ago, she couldn't find alcohol-free drinks that were more interesting than water or seltzer.
So she started making her own concoctions and launched Mingle Mocktails in 2019.
The sparkling beverages are made simply with fresh fruits, botanicals, and organic cane sugar. Flavors include Cucumber Melon Mojito, and Blood-Orange Elderflower Mimosa. Taylor says it's as simple as chilling, pouring, serving, and garnishing.
Mingle Mocktails | Facebook | Instagram
Here's where to get great gifts for the drinkers on your list
Whether they are fans of handcrafted whiskey or some good craft beer, these local breweries and distilleries have something for every taste on your list.
At Love City Brewing, husband and wife Melissa and Kevin Walter brew eight to 12 varieties of beer at any given time, and they just released their Velvet edge Russian Imperial stout.
Strivers Row was named best new distiller by Philadelphia magazine this year. Francisco Garcia's ultimate goal is to distribute nationally and in his native Dominican Republic.
Break bread from Merzbacher's for your holiday gathering
Peter Merzbacher opened Merzbacher's of Germantown two-and-half years ago, but he's been baking bread for more than a decade.
He describes his business as a wholesale artisan bakery.
He distributes to grocery stores like Whole Foods, Giant and Weaver's Way and also supplies a large number of Philadelphia restaurants with his sweet potato hamburger rolls and Philly muffins.
But he also serves the neighborhood with freshly baked bread. He opens the shop six days a week from 4-8 p.m. for pickup. On Fridays he makes pizza for the neighborhood creating pies from his focaccia dough.
You can grab a sourdough loaf for a holiday gathering or pick up the Philly muffin for a special breakfast treat Christmas morning.
Merzbacher's of Germantown | Facebook | Instagram
4530 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19144