Ugly & Beautiful

Shop Small: Finding Gifts for Readers and Writers

Today might be Small Business Saturday, but you can support small businesses every day, in your neighborhood and online. There are so many small businesses out there, selling so many different kinds of wares–but sometimes, they can get buried under the big businesses’ SEO and ad budgets. So today I’m highlighting a few small businesses I admire to help you find the perfect gift for those you love.

Not every book ends up at Barnes & Noble, or even on Amazon. Small presses produce some of the most interesting and intelligent creative works. Support a small press and find something new.

A few of my favorites:

But there’s a world of literary gifts beyond books.

Have a favorite quote hand-lettered by Kim at Pretty Happy Good, a Denver-based calligraphy and signage shop.

Find something new and beautiful at Physiopoetry, a unique shop that was co-created by the author of Skin on Sundays. You can buy books of poetry, mugs and water bottles featuring poetic snippets, or my favorite: the Skin on Sundays calendar.

Fairy-tale fans can find some amazing hand-crafted pieces of home decor and costuming on Etsy at Magic Princess Whitney.

In fact, Etsy is a great way to find small business owners selling niche products. A quick search can yield amazing results. Just don’t forget to keep scrolling–the top items might be great, but Etsy’s SEO can be difficult for sellers to keep up with and some of the best stuff might be a bit buried. (I can’t help mentioning my shop here… shameless self-promotion, oh no!)

Just remember: there’s a huge world beyond Amazon, and it’s pretty beautiful.


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