Small Business Saturday: Where to Shop Local Around Philly and the Main Line
Small Business Saturday is all about local shopping. Here's where you can find deals this year.
You can make an impact on your local economy this year by participating in Small Business Saturday. This seven-year-old tradition has been encouraging shoppers to shop local and impact your community by buying from the small businesses. Many Philadelphia-area businesses and neighborhoods are spreading the word, and we’ve put together a list to inspire you to start planning your shopping for the holidays.
Just for Kids
Want a thoughtful gift for the little ones in your life? We love PucciManuli in Ardmore (right across from Lulu’s Casita if the kids want to play around) and Momo’s Tree House in both Old City and Fitler Square (keep them in mind if you’re looking for something to do during the week, they always have story times and song circles!) Other favorites are Tildie’s Toy Box in South Philly and Puns (check out their new location in Ardmore!)
Don’t feel like going out shopping? You can still support local businesses right from home, by grabbing items from PhillyKids Clothing, filled with cute Philly-centric items, or Buddha Babe, offering tons of cute items both baby and mama will love. There’s also Mason Dixon, with gorgeous leather goods for the stylish adult or kid in your life.
Manayunk is hosting a Small Business Saturday event, where over 50 local businesses near Main Street will be participating with discounts, food specials, and free gifts with a purchase. Parking in Manayunk will be free all day, and make an evening out of it too; stay after 5:30 to enjoy special local performances and a tree lighting ceremony.
Another part of town with super cute boutiques and local businesses? Chestnut Hill in Philadelphia, and it’s not just deals. The Mummers and Santa will be there as well, and if the kids want to stop and play, there’s always Nest Chestnut Hill. Maybe surprise your kiddo with a gift from Villavillekula or Oxford Circus Toys. And get it before it’s gone: PAFA Northwest brings fine artisan goods from local artists to Northwest Philly with gifts and jewelry for adults and educational toys for the kids.
You can’t have Chestnut Hill without Mount Airy, and here’s a convenient online map of all of the participating businesses in Small Business Saturday. With retail shops and awesome food, make a day out of it. For the artistic types, Handcraft Workshop is encouraging all ages to stop by from 11 am — 4 pm to come in and sew all day long (no experience necessary,) and ARTrageous Brush & Flow is hosting a $5 painting class multiple times during the day where you can take home your own creations.
Fishtown and Northern Liberties
Fishtown and Northern Liberties are filled with boutiques and small businesses. Stop at one of the many local coffee shops (we recommend Steap and Grind), take a break at a tree-lined park, and stroll through the boutiques featuring many handmade and locally-sourced items. Minnow Lane focuses on eco-friendly items constructed with a thoughtful approach (and also offers classes for expecting and new parents). Other cute boutiques include SWAG (on the home decor and accessory side) or Vestige. Also, there isn’t a bad restaurant in sight, so check out some of the local eateries while you’re there.
More than 20 businesses in the Art Museum are are participating in this district’s Saturday event. Get a small business passport, make a purchase from at least three of the businesses, and take a selfie, and you’ll be entered to win gift cards and other prizes! Be sure to stop into Ali’s Wagon, which has Philly-themed kids’ items and is offering a discount on Saturday!
This cute shopping district is outside the city, but close enough for a fun Saturday outing. Ambler is encouraging consumers in the area to explore Main Street and see all of the local small businesses it has to offer.
The Main Line
The Wayne Business Association will be serving hot chocolate and having raffles during the afternoon in support of SBS. Take a stroll down Lancaster Avenue and stop in all of the boutiques and local shops hosting deals all day long.
Narberth is the Main Line capital of small business, with places like Character Development encouraging young minds to grow with their educational enrichment activities, or Twice as Nice if it’s time to freshen up your young one’s wardrobe at this very affordable consignment shop. Supporting small businesses doesn’t just mean buying toys and clothes: creative children would love a class pass to The Handwork Studio, which also offers conveniently-timed winter break camps as well.
Before you start browsing through the adorable shops in the downtown area, register for the Downtown Dollars lottery, which is open through December 3. Lucky winners will get gift cards to match what they buy, thanks to a grant.
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Photograph by Casey Kallen.