Holiday Gift Guide: It’s a Big Deal to Shop Small

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Choose from a wide selection of art, crafts, clothing, jewelry and edibles from the vendors at Eastern Market Flea Market

Holidays on the Hill are special. There’s a real small-town greeting card feel to holidays on the Hill. It’s the way the community comes together to light the Hill Holiday tree and the Community Menorah. It’s the pleasant glow the Washington Globes cast on the brick sidewalks. It’s the little shops throughout our village with shopkeepers behind the counter who are also our neighbors. They ask about your family, suggest the perfect gift and go the extra mile to help you choose. It’s a big deal to shop small and shop local. You can complete all your holiday shopping right here on the Hill and support your community at the same time.

Gifts
Brand new on C Street near Eastern Market, Relume (760 C St. SE) carries a wide selection of new, re-purposed and vintage candles, ornaments, earrings and artistic clothing. The eclectic shop also offers work-shops and crafts from fake cake making to real wreath making and a DIY candle bar. relume.co

A colorful wall of gifts at Relume (760 C St. SE)

Groovy DC Cards & Gifts (321 7th Street SE, groovydc.com) is celebrating 17 years in business. They’ve got  it  all: home  accessories, cards, balloons and gifts from delicate  silver candle holders to wipes that eliminate red wine from your smile. They also carry all the tissue, wrap and bows needed to dress the holiday up right!

Shoppers check out the wide selection of greeting cards at Groovy DC (321 Seventh St. SE)

Woven History & Silk Road (315 Seventh St. SE) owner Mehmet Yalcin keeps around 5,000 rugs in his shop. They’re on display with over 200 gift items from along the silk road, including hats, intricately embroidered boots, tiles and bowls in beautiful Turkish patterns. Don’t miss the little camels of various sizes, loved by Hill children! Wovenhistory.com

Owner Mehmet Yalcin outside of Woven History and Silk Road (315 7th st. SE)

Over at The Wharf, Diament Jewelry (51 District Sq. SW, www.diamentjewelry.com) sells rings, bracelets, earrings and necklaces. But they also have a wide collection of other gifts, from candles and candy to mugs, clothing, games and puzzles, ornaments, cards, wrap and bows.

Check out Glass Stache (1111 H St. NE) which has an extensive collection of high quality, American made smoking equipment for the modern smoker. Also incredible glass jewelry, drinkware, and collectible borosilicate marbles. With six locations throughout the District, including Union Market (325 Morse St. NE), The Wharf (10 District Sq. SW) and The Roost (1401 Pennsylvania Ave. SE, www.shopmadeindc.com), Shop Made in DC has products from 200 makers including apothecary, apparel, art, jewelry, home decor and stationery.

The Hill is rich in gift shops – but don’t sleep on the hardware stores. You can find everything you need for the gardener on your list at Ginkgo’s (911 11th St. SE) but also glassware, art and even a clay chimenea. Locally made products are marked with a green dot.

A shopper browses gift s at Ginkgo’s (911 11th St. SE)

Frager’s (1115 Pennsylvania Ave. SE, acehardware.com) carries a wide variety of sweets, toys, decor items, decoration, culinary tools and gardening tools – check out the holiday cards by local artist Erin Thompson (erinthompsonstudio.com) and the treats by Capitol Candy Jar. Jenk’s Hardware (910 Bladensburg Rd. NE, wsjenks.com) carries holiday decor, and big gifts like the Green Egg. Check out Little Wild Things Farm upstairs at 906 Bladensburg Rd. NE (littlewildthingsfarm.com), where you can gift a salad share membership.

Kids
Labyrinth (645 Pennsylvania Ave. SE, labyrinthdc.com) is a family-friendly, community-focused store featuring a wide selection of non-electronic, specialty games, puzzles, and mazes. Or go online to get personal recommendations from the Labyrinth Personal Shopper, or to see lists of top-sellers, stocking stuffers or local designers.

Labyrinth Sales Associate Shawn says cooperative game Sky Team is a hot holiday item. Players cooperate to land their plane at airports all over the world.

The Union Market shop Three Littles (1260 Fourth St. NE, threelittles.co) carries thoughtfully-designed children’s goods. The shop offers a selection of necessities and gifts, making an effort not to overwhelm shoppers. Or choose from several thousand figures displayed in antique showcases at The Toy Soldier Shop (503 11th St. SE, toysoldiershop.com). Toy soldier books, wooden castles and a remarkable selection of original WWI posters round out the offerings. Open Saturdays.

Union Market shop Three Littles (1260 Fourth St. NE) sustainable, thought fully-designed children’s goods designed to stand the test of kids and time

Help artists beginning and seasoned build on their talents with a class from Capitol Hill Arts Workshop (CHAW, 545 Seventh St. SE, chaw.org). Classes are available in arts, ceramics, photography and dance. Or do you have a budding dancer? Studio One Dance (511 11th St. SE, studioone-dance.com) offers creative ballet to kids from two to eight years. Joy of Motion Dance (1333 H St. NE; joyofmotion.org) offers hip hop, jazz, modern and tap dance students starting at 2 years old.

Arts are central to St. Mark’s Studio (301 A St. SE); you can gift your child music lessons, singing or dance lessons in a variety of styles (stmarks.net/music, stmarksdance.org). And when you want to give a perfect, kid-sized guitar, music sheets and instruction to your budding rock star? Go to Music on the Hill (800 D St. NE), which celebrated their ten year anniversary in 2023.

Kids can explore the gift of song at Music on the Hill (800 D St. NE). The store celebrated their ten year anniversary in 2023.

Books
Is there a book lover on your list? East City Bookshop (645 Pennsylvania Ave. SE) is an independent, woman-owned and community-focused bookstore for children and adults. In addition to books, they also carry a selection of toys, gifts, art supplies and literary-inspired items. eastcitybookshop.com

East City Bookshop (745 Pennsylvania Ave. SE) offers it all for the small set, from gift s like stuffed friends to books full of new characters

On C Street SE, Capitol Hill Books (657 C St. SE, capitolhillbooks-dc.com) serves up everything from well-loved pocketbooks to first editions. The store has three floors of quality used books along with a selection of new titles, first editions, and rare and collectable books. You can shop online, but there are way more books in the store than could possibly be listed on the website; they also offer a surprise book box.

Gift s for readers are in the bag at Capitol Hill Books (357 C St. SE)

On Barracks Row, Little District Books (737 Eighth St. SE, littledistrictbooks.com) sells books that represent the spectrum of LGBTQIA+ identities and independent publishers. They offer a monthly subscription box as well as a curated gift box–you give them a theme, and they fill it up.

Over on H Street, Blackowned Solid State Books (600F H St. NE, solidstatebooksdc.com) has a deep and diverse selection with a café for a pit stop. Solid State Books has an extensive children’s book and young adult section to fully serve the smallest readers. You can visit Politics and Prose at Union Market (1270 Fifth St. NE) or The Wharf (70 District Sq. SW, www.politics-prose.com). The DC-based business carries an extensive selection of books for adults and children, games, apparel, gifts and stationery. Staff are known for their knowledge of literature. P&P offers a subscription service that will send customers a book every month.

Health and Wellness
Strength and flexibility are gifts of health. Sport & Health has been renamed OneLife Fitness (315 G St. SE, onelifefitness.com) and offers gift memberships, personal training packages and spa services.

Boutique fitness studio Jade Fitness (1310 Pennsylvania Ave. SE; jadefitnessdc.com) offers small group and one-on-one training and studio fitness and yoga classes.

Want a flexible gift? Hot Yoga Capitol Hill (410 H St. NE, hotyogacapitolhill.com) offers an all-inclusive new student special to local residents, from pilates and yoga to fusion for kids and adults.

District Flow Yoga (410 Eighth St. SE, districtflowyoga.com) offers outdoor classes on District Pier at The Wharf in addition to in-studio, with unlimited memberships, single classes and intro specials. But with all that hustle, they’ll need new shoes, socks and clothes! Check out Pacer’s Navy Yard (300 Tingey St. SE) to get the fit.

Pacer’s Navy Yard offers clothing and shoes for men and women

#BikeDC! To truly impress a cyclist, put your gift where their heart is: the bike. At Daily Rider (600 H St. NE, thedailyriderdc.com) get gift certificates for a tune-up or find the perfect accessory or clothing item. Conte’s Bike Shop (contesbikes.com) in Navy Yard (1331 Fourth St. SE) offers bikes, racks, baskets and everything from helmets to socks as well as maintenance.

Conte’s Bike Shop (contesbikes.com) in Navy Yard (1331 Fourth St. SE) offers bikes, racks, baskets and everything from helmets to socks as well as maintenance.

Give the gift of glow! Peel Haus medical spa (1105 Pennsylvania Ave. SE, peelhaus.com) opened this year and offers popular services like the Hydrafacial and chemical peels for face and body. Or pair treatments like Microderm abrasion and resurfacing to bring out your holiday glow. Providers also offer Botox and plastic surgery. Gift certificates are available peelhaus.com. Or give her a treatment at Mustard Seed Spa (405 Eighth St. NE), which offers massage, and body scrubs in addition to intuitive and medical massage. What gift could beat a retreat to a 3-in-1 Infared Sauna? Mustardseedspa.com

Peel Haus Co-Founder Sonya Lowery-Young is a licensed Medical Aesthetician and can help you achieve that holiday glow.

Treats
Get the holidays done DC-style with a stop at Capital Candy Jar (201 15 St. NE, capitalcandyjar.com). Jane Thomas, aka J. Chocolatier, will pop up in front of Groovy DC (321 Seventh St. SE) Dec. 14-18,19-22, 23 and 24, offering artisan hand-made chocolate in classic brown wrap with red ribbon–the figs are amazing and the fleur-de-sel caramels a stocking staple. Or order online: jchocolatier.com

If your sweets are best baked, check out the decadent and beautiful cupcakes by Cake Theory (325 Seventh St. SE) which can be stuffed, topped and loaded in multiple flavors. Or opt for croissants, madeleines, shortbread, macarons and cookies from Souk (705 Eighth St. SE, dcsouk.com). Gluten not your thing? Sweet Crimes Bakery (1238 Pennsylvania Ave. SE) does it with their pies, cakes, cookies and pastries. Pre-order at sweetcrimes.com

Maybe you’re shopping for someone who loves to make the treats, rather than receive them! You’ll find everything you need for the patisserie and chef on your list at Hill’s Kitchen (713 D St. SE). There’s nonpareils and cocktail bitters, quality crockery and linens as well as cookie cutters shaped like the District and the 50 states.  They’re open 7 days a week til Christmas. www.hillskitchen.com

Hill’s Kitchen owner Leah Daniels can help you find the perfect pot, tool or ingredient at 713 D St. SE

But a treat is as a treat does, so don’t forget the adult beverages. Check out Exotic Wines and Spirits (801 Maryland Ave. NE) for a wide array of wines, beers, bubbles, liquors and even bitters. They offer seasonal sales and discounts by the case. exoticwinespirits.com Why not toast with a little sparkling sake this holiday? Classy Corks (801 Virginia Ave. SE) has a wide selection of Japanese rice wine available. You can also find spirits, wines, mixers and beer from all over the world, delivered to your door for a flat $7 fee. www.classycorksdc.com. The consultants at Schneiders of Capitol Hill (300 Massachusetts Ave. NE) can draw on 60 years of experience to help you find the perfect bottle for meal, stocking or under the tree. cellar.com

Blooms
The holidays are a time for foliage, so check out these new florists. H Street’s Seven Petals (408 H St. NE, sevenpetals.co) offers flowers done differently – the infinite rose collection is a boxed bouquet of specially preserved roses that can last up to three months. Or preorder the Champagne Christmas Tree, a real tree that opens to reveal a champagne bottle.

She Loves Me (721 Eighth St. SE, shelovesme.com) opened last year and offers holiday wreath and centerpiece workshops, unique bouquets and a full selection of gifts such as puzzles, confetti cannons, candles and the “surprise orange.”

Or go with tradition. Blue Iris has been selling gorgeous bouquets, wreathes and floral arrangements from Eastern Market (225 Seventh St. NE) for nearly 50 years. Check out owner Angie Brunson’s outdoor spread outdoors near the Christmas trees outside the market building in addition to the shop inside. www.blueirisflowerbouquet.com

Holiday Markets
The Flea Market at Eastern Market (200 & 300 blocks Seventh St. SE; 700 block C Street SE, https://easternmarket-dc.org/ouroutdoor-vendor) has something for everyone.

Kids will see themselves in Jacq’s doll’s; grown ups will love how they look in jewelry by vendors like Enise or a t-shirt from Hero Heads. Art, finely-crafted furniture, imported crafts and vintage and antique furniture, art, records and clothing – you can find something for everyone every Saturday and Sunday at the flea market.

This year’s DC Holiday Market operates from Nov. 17 to Dec. 23 on two blocks of F Street NW, from 7th to 9th Streets NW. With its main grand entrance located on the sidewalk in front of the National Portrait Gallery, more than 70 exhibitors and six food vendors will provide tasty treats.  Note: they’re closed Dec. 4. downtownholidaymarket.com

Unique Markets will open a pop-up Market at Union Market Dec. 16th and 17th, featuring local artisans, designers and small business owners. But it’s not just a market, it’s a festival – with free drinks, photo moments and more. Tickets required. Check it out at eventbrite.com/e/unique-markets-dc.

Unique Markets will again open a pop-up Market at Union Market Dec. 16th and 17th, featuring local artisans, designers and small business owners

Fashion
A Ma Maniere (1214 H St. NE) offers luxury men’s street style. From the French for “my way,” the boutique is designed to represent and inspire a fashion forward clientele deeply-rooted within their community. They’ve got it all, from $50 t-shirts to a $5,000 NASA Balenciaga jacket. You can make an appointment. a-ma-maniere.com

Or head upstairs to Paris Bleu (321 Seventh St. SE, 2nd Fl). With the feel of an attic atelier, you’ll find Italian leather bags, patterned wool gloves, silk scarves and jewelry as well as gifts appropriate for hosts such as candles, fine soaps and hand made towels. Most of the pieces, like proprietor Christine Arnold, come from France. 202-644-6575, parisbleudc@gmail.com

Most of the pieces at Paris Bleu (2nd Fl, 321 Seventh St. SE), like proprietor Christine Arnold, come from France.

At A Beautiful Closet (20 District Sq. SW) owner Pamela Sofola has met most of the people who make the timeless pieces featured in her boutique at the Wharf. Here you’ll find casual and evening wear, jewelry, hats shoes and bags or the gown for your next gala. Shop in store or online abeautifulclosetdc.com

The meticulously selected and carefully curated collections at Bitter Grace (1325 Fifth St. NE), newly relocated to Union Market, support global micro businesses. All partners employ women, provide financial stability and/or empower through education opportunities. The shop also offers styling and community building activities such as seminars and events on site. They’re open for holiday shopping prior to a January renovation. bittergracedc.com

Clothes Encounters (202 Seventh St. SE) Do you know someone on the Hill who hasn’t scored a fantastic find from this resale shop? Be her new BFF and tell her about it! On the Hill since 1979, new clothes are put out daily including brands like Chanel, Diane von Furstenberg and Prada. www.clothesencountersdc.com

Furry Friends
But don’t forget the fuzziest members of the family! Howl to the Chief (719 Eighth St. SE, howltothechief.com) offers a full selection of treats and toys for pets, in addition to natural food and supplies.

Howl to the Cheif (719 Eighth St. SE) has treats for your fuzziest family members

Shop online for delivery and pickup. Are you going out of town for the holiday? Give your dog a holiday, too, at Dogtopia Navy Yard (900 M St. SE, dogtopia.com), where they offer doggy spa services.

Pets, like kids, tend to get into things over the holidays, so put the vet in your contacts. District Vet has a location in Navy Yard (801 Second St. SE) and Eastern Market (240 Seventh St. SE, districtveteasternmarket.com) and a way of treating pets like your family. Veterinarian Emergency Group (VEG, 925 H St. NE, veterinaryemergencygroup.com) promises short waits and no paperwork until your pet has gone into treatment.

This year, shop local. After checking off everyone on your list, stop with friends to share a glass, then head home to do some wrapping with your packages safely under your arm and your heart warmed with the joy of the multiple ways you can give – and give back to your community.