*Disclosure: I am a brand ambassador for Picky Bars and Koala Clip, but I don’t get any bonuses, or financial kickback from including them on this list. I also don’t get any benefits from any companies on this list.* Links open up to the website, and images link to instagram!
This year I’ve really been trying to support more small businesses and BIPOC-owned places, so I wanted to share some of my favorite places to spend money with everyone else. Especially this week as almost every shop listed in this gift guide is running a sale of some sort this week. My list is kind of all over the place, like me, from sports, to food, to art, to candy. I hope you enjoy my first-ever gift guide and find a few new places to start shopping!
First up, Athletes for Yoga. I am not a yogi, and I find stillness to be a struggle, but I do really enjoy using this program. It’s a virtual platform with tons of short videos like hip reset, meditation, calf reset, core and more. The programs are designed for athletes of other sports like running, cycling, swimming, or weightlifters. The program doesn’t take a lot of time or space and is perfect to work on specific areas that need recovery or strengthening!
Alright, you knew that my list was going to be non-traditional, so here’s my favorite tattoo shop in Dallas. Singleton is so welcoming that you’ll feel totally comfortable from the moment you walk in the doors. They’ve got big snakes and scorpions you can check out while waiting for your appointment and you will leave laughing so hard your stomach hurts. If you aren’t into getting a tattoo, it’s still worth a stop because all the artists have their T-shirts and prints available for sale as well.
I love stopping by Spinster Records whenever I’m in Bishop Arts, but they also do a great job of updating their instagram page to shop directly from there. Also love all of their Oak Cliff merch that is created by local designers.
One thing that I’ve loved this year is seeing everybody’s reading list! It seems like since we have been stuck in the house people who were already readers really kicked it up a notch, and people who didn’t read before for whatever reason have started again, and as a former English teacher, I love to see it. So, please be sure to order your books from small bookshops! I recommend The Dock Bookshop. They are the only Black-owned bookstore in the DFW area and they ship their stuff crazy fast.
I am so obsessed with Beam Paints! I ordered a set for my mom’s birthday back in April, and have been looking for reasons to order more. These are naturally sourced, the dye is always from a plant or other natural source, and they are packaged in cedar or birch from an indigenous sustainable lumber operation or wrapped in beeswax canvas, and all orders are plastic-free. I love that this company was created by an indigenous woman, who learned her love of the arts from her parents. Definitely the best choice for the artist in your life.
Lost Pines Art Bazaar is another one of my favorites and where I often go for gifts for myself and others! This small-biz is based in Bastrop, TX, and is owned by a Persian family and run by my dear friend Naseem. Everything in the shop is beautiful and it all has a beautiful story. The majority of items are sourced from fair trade, woman-owned, Texas/local small businesses, BIPOC owned, etc. You can feel good about your purchases here. Naseem has made it so easy to shop online through their website, and she even offers curated gift baskets. Just answer a few questions and she will create a gift for any occasion. Definitely reach out to her via the shop’s instagram if you are shopping online and she can help you!
Back on the fitness side of things, is Fitnesse! Fitnesse is a super small, Black-owned company that offers two types of resistance bands, loops and tubes, for at-home workouts or travel. The tubes can be used in so many ways, including with a door stop so you can really get as much weight as you need wherever you are. They also offer some free workout ideas on their instagram, and workout plans for sale on their site as well.
Time for something for the runners! Koala Clip is literally the best way to carry your phone on runs. They have all sizes and it slips right in the back of a sports bra! If that’s not comfortable, some people carry it in the front of their sports bra, or inside their waistband. Others have used it to carry gels/keys/cards. I use it when cycling to clip in my jersey pocket. It’s super sweat resistant, trust me.
And because we are all hungry, Picky Bars! What I love about this company is that it was founded by athletes (Lauren Fleshman, Jesse Thomas, and Stephanie Bruce) to create a product with real ingredients that fills you up and fuels you. Not only that, but it tastes delicious. Bars, oatmeal, granola, and drizzle are the current food options they have. Within those options there are many vegan and gluten-free choices as well, so this will work for almost every eater. They also support great causes and give back to their local community, and the greater community as well. They just re-stocked their site with tons of new merch (water bottles, sweatshirts, hats, insulated pint tumblers, etc.) and are having their BFS (Big freakin’ sale) where everything is 30% off. Including Picky Club! Picky Club is a subscription service where you can control the frequency of deliveries and what you want each month to get maximum savings. Cancel or pause your club box any time, make changes whenever you want, it’s really the best way to make sure you have some staple snacks in your pantry.
I’ve been a Peaberry stan since they opened because their coffee is delicious, the owner Elijah is the kindest human ever (and a fellow teacher!) and their branding is sick (done by Wheron!). You can get gift cards for the Dallas locals, or order some cans to give to visiting relatives, etc. They have so many canned flavors now, Vietnamese iced coffee, Mexican Vanilla, Non-dairy, etc. Super delicious.
And finally, a biz I just learned about, Cami’s Candies! She makes gummy candy covered in chamoy and delivers it in holographic packaging. Nothing is better than this. I could make myself sick off eating bags and bags of this, so please, don’t let me buy it all.