I've always been a passionate supporter of small businesses and try to shop local whenever possible, especially when searching for the perfect hostess gift or holiday present. With so much changing in our small towns, and small local shops closing their doors, it's more important than ever to shop small this holiday season. I think there is something special about knowing the story and the person behind the brand and store from which you are buying. The only thing just as important to me as shopping local is shopping at businesses that give back.
There are so many benefits to shopping small and keeping it local but here are just a few:
- It improves the local economy
- Shopping at one local business helps other local businesses
- Having unique shops keeps your community unique
- Better customer service
- More personalized attention
- You will help create jobs in the community
- It feels good
American Express founded Small Business Saturday in 2010, giving small businesses and brick-and-mortar stores across the country a day of their own. 2017 marks the sixth year for small business Saturday. Keep it local, shop small and enjoy your Saturday!
FIVE SMALL SHOPS/BRANDS TO CHECK OUT THIS WEEKEND
The Fred Shop
The Fred Shop is a women's boutique that feature brands such as Milly, Vince, Joie, Rebecca Taylor and much more. From a casual outfit for running around Greenwich on a Saturday morning to a night out in NYC, Fred has you covered. With the combined professional experience of owners Kelley Frey and Shereen Koshnoodi, there's not a piece in the store you could go wrong with. This power duo not only has extensive diverse fashion backgrounds but are both local moms. Stop by at The Fred Shop in Old Greenwich this Saturday to get your outfits ready for the holiday season.
The Perfect Provenance
The Perfect Provenance is an art inspired, luxury lifestyle store & café located off of Greenwich Ave. The Perfect Provenance, which means -- a place of origin; especially that of a work of art or archaeological specimen – seeks to find museum quality artisan products from around the world. The store hosts four to five exhibitions per year. The exhibitions inspire the entire retail experience including art, books, fashion, home, food, accessories, fragrance and more. The Perfect Provenance’s mission is to bring the best of the museum experience to a retail environment and the best of retail experience to their exhibitions. Luxury and nonprofit public relations executive, Lisa Lori and local mother of three, started the Perfect Provenance in 2016. This space is the future of retail. You can enjoy a delicious lunch or dinner while crossing names off your list all in one cozy space.
The Perfect Provenance also carries their own signature collection of products called The Smile Collection to benefit Operation Smile. Since 2010, Lori's family has raised more than $2 million to support Operation Smile through events, the Three Little Bears initiative, and through the Smile Collection products which are available at The Perfect Provenance.
Back 40 Mercantile
The Back 40 Mercantile is a modern interpretation of an old fashioned country store. If you aren’t quite sure what that means, stop by and sample the best ginger cookie you have ever tasted, which will take you back to the days when New England farmers traded maple syrup for pottery. The four founders have common, and yet diverse passions, all of which are displayed in the Back40 Mercantile. The “common” is found in the commitment to excellence. Product by product, it has to be the best in its class. The “diverse” is found in each corner of the store, be it an oil painting by Eric Sloane, a book by Tracy Kidder or perhaps a hand made necklace from a woman who makes her jewelry in her kitchen, and not to mention the best mac-n-cheese (organic of course) you’ll ever taste. You can get lost walking around looking at all of the beautiful goods. Stop by this season to find some very thoughtful gifts that anyone on your list would love. The Back 40 Mercantile believes that giving back to both the local community and the broader world is both a responsibility and a privilege. The Back 40 Farm Group donates fresh produce to Neighbor to Neighbor here in Greenwich which serves more than 400 families as a nutritional food bank. They also pledged 10% of all profits to benefit the Partners In Health Food Security Program working in both Haiti and Rwanda.
THE TWO OH THREE
Roscoe and Tory Brown are the brother-sister duo behind the Two Oh Three. Their story began about three years ago as lifelong enthusiasts of ‘The 203’. They found that they were becoming frustrated that despite all of their love for Connecticut, there wasn’t an easy way to express this pride. As a result of this frustration, they decided to launch their small lifestyle brand in the summer of 2014. They created a tee shirt that would give customers a tangible way to show their pride for their community. One shirt led to two, and before they knew it, they had developed an entire line of ‘203 Gear’. With their gear in hand, they drove up and down the Connecticut coast traveling to different markets and shops in an effort to spread their mission. From there, THE TWO OH THREE brand was born. If you have anyone on your list this holiday season that share this love for Connecticut, a piece from THE TWO OH THREE gear would be the perfect gift. From infant zip ups and baseball hats to picnic blankets and joggers, they have something for everyone. THE TWO OH THREE is also very involved in the community. From sponsored community days at the beach to glove giveaways at the local homeless shelters, they try and work as a resource for those who want to help give back.
Co-founders Kaki Mcgrath and Lauren Stephens created the idea for Dudly Stephens when endlessly searching for fleece that could be used in a fashionable way. Growing up in New England towns they lived in fleece jackets year round. "Fleece was the perfect solution for warmth and comfort, while being easy to wash, environmentally friendly and stylish." Dudley Stephens designs and creates stylish silhouettes using fleece fabric that are comfortable, easy to wear, and that look and feel good. Kaki and Lauren are both local moms and as a team they have a wealth of experience in both the fashion and marketing world. All Dudley Stephens styles are made in the U.S.A. using recycled fleece fabric. Dudley Stephens is proud to partner with books for kids, an organization focused on promoting literacy among all children with a special emphasis on low-income and at-risk preschool aged children. By partnering with books for kids, Dudley Stephens is joining the cause to help "change the narrative" for thousands of children as #dsgoods donates a portion of sales every year to books for kids and participates in other activities throughout the year to further their mission. This week Dudley Stephens is offering 10% off and donating 10% of sales to Book for Kids, use code BOOKSFORKIDS. If you have a female on your holiday list of any age, a Dudley Stephens piece would be the perfect gift.