With the majority of our team at Govalo being based in North America, it makes sense that most peoples’ lists would be North American Shopify merchants. However, there are thousands of amazing businesses globally that deserve some love this holiday season. So if you’re looking for some of the best gifts available in the UK, you’re in the right place.
This may be especially useful if you’re looking for gifts for friends and family who live in the UK, and want to send them the perfect present direct to their front door.
To help us find those UK-based gifts, today’s wishlist comes from Shannon Sherry over the pond in Scotland.
Based in bonnie Glasgow, Shannon heads up Govalo’s blog and social media content. A lover of languages, she speaks fluent Scottish Gaelic as well as basic French and Spanish, and takes Japanese lessons every week. When she isn’t reading a grammar book, you can usually find her learning to cook new dishes with her husband or loving on her dog, Benji. She is crazy for the holidays - the music, the matching pyjamas, the decorating, and everything in between. She loves a well organized holiday spreadsheet, especially for what cocktails and cookies she’s going to make for her family holiday hampers.
#1 - Lucy & Yak - Ethically made dungarees and apparel
While on a round-the-world trip, Lucy and Chris started making tobacco pouches from used clothes and selling vintage clothes out of their van - Yak. This gave them the bright idea to make their own super comfortable clothes, and after finding the right ethical producer in India they started selling their original dungarees on Depop. Quickly expanding to their own full ecommerce site based in the UK, they now produce a range of super comfortable dungarees, pinafores, sweatshirts, t-shirts, and more that are all wildly popular. If you want to give the gift of super comfortable clothes, Lucy & Yak are a great fit.
#2 - Trakke - Handmade waxed canvas bags
If you’ve ever been to Scotland you know the weather tends to get very wet. Luckily, Trakke makes a range of weatherproof waxed canvas bags that are ideal for protecting whatever you need for your next adventure. Whether you’re a commuter cycling to work every day and need something to protect your laptop, or looking to head up Ben Lomond for the day and need a reliable backpack. Crafted with British-made materials, Trakke’s bags come with a lifetime warranty so you can “worry about what lies ahead, not what’s on your back”. They also run a buyback scheme to ensure that none of their bags end up in landfill and the energy used in production doesn’t go to waste.
#3 - Emma Bridgewater
In 1984, Emma had a problem we can all relate to at this time of year - she couldn’t find the right present for her mum. She wanted to get two cups and saucers, but everything was either dainty or a bit boring. That’s when she had the idea for her now successful pottery business, creating beautiful, hand-painted stoneware in Stoke-on-Trent. Every piece in their store can be customized with hand-painted lettering, so whether it’s a surname with complicated spelling or a family catchphrase you can make your teapot or mug or whatever you want totally individual to your gift recipient.
#4 - Maison Kitsune
Founded by Gildas Loaëc and Masaya Kuroki, Maison Kitsuné is a multi-faceted, Paris-meets-Tokyo brand that fuses music, art, and fashion. Their ready-to-wear clothing brand balances comfort and simplicity, reinventing classic styles with a playful attitude to color, patterns, and fabrics. Many of their pieces feature their signature fox logo in a variety of different versions, representing how their brand changes and adapts much like the folklore of Japanese kitsune from which they borrow their name. A great gift for a fashion and music lover...or someone who just really likes foxes.
#5 - Penguin Books
Penguin is an iconic brand in the world of books, having kickstarted the paperback revolution in 1930s UK that made books much more affordable and accessible to everyday people. They keep that same ethos today, publishing a wide range of paperback and hardback books that are not only affordable, but look beautiful on your bookshelf. Their ecommerce store sells a variety of bundles, which make wonderful gifts for anyone who loves nothing more than cosying up with a good book. From their Japanese collection featuring classics from the likes of Haruki Murakami, to their gorgeous clothbound classics collection with favorites from Jane Austen and Charles Dickens.
#6 - Instrmnt
Instrmnt is a Glasgow-based industrial design studio, designing functional, inspired timepieces using the very best Swiss and German components. They released their first watch in 2014; the Instrmnt 01 is a minimalist steel watch inspired by 20th century industrial design. Their focus lies in creating goods with an emphasis on quality, simplicity, and attainability, and their work has been recognised by the likes of Paris & New York Fashion Week and the London Design Festival. Their collection has expanded in the years since their first release, and they would make a truly stunning gift for anyone in your life who appreciates a great watch.