Forget the boring gift cards and JCPenney gloves this year, handmade gifts are more thoughtful and appreciated. However, many of us have little to no talent when it comes to crafting a present that is both functional and beautiful. Never fear, Minnesota is full of artists and local merchants that create and sell homemade gifts that are just as unique and fantastic as if it was made by you. Check out any of these specialty shops for an amazing shopping experience.
4315 Upton Ave. S.
Minneapolis, MN 55410
Bibelot is one of those stores where you can spend all day browsing. With a large and unique selection of gifts, clothing , jewelry, decorations and many other things you never knew existed, Bibelot is a local treasure trove. Handmade and locally crafted jewelry and clothing also make up a huge part of the stock in Bibelot. Check out its stationary selection, gift wrap and home decor in the back. With three other locations throughout the Twin Cities, Bibelot will quickly become your favorite place to shop for gifts.
General Store Of Minnetonka
14401 Highway 7
Minnetonka, MN 55345
This locally owned gift shop has the feel of an old fashioned general store. The wooden porch opens up to a giant store full of unique and handmade gifts, including crafts, candles, home decor, clothing, toys, jewelry and seasonal items as well. A cafe of homemade foods and coffee is located in the General Store if a refreshment is needed after a long day of shopping. The General Store even has a large selection of Christmas decor and ornaments available year round. Local artists and Minnesota-based companies contribute to the stock to make the store even more delightful.
The Farmer’s Daughter
4906 Long Ave.
White Bear Lake, MN 55110
Located in the quaint shopping district of downtown White Bear Lake, The Farmer’s Daughter is a virtual gallery of local artists and Minnesotan products. Support local artists by purchasing one-of-a-kind decor and customized gifts that range from handcrafted pottery to unique lawn ornaments. Gift baskets are a popular item at this locale and can be filled with custom creations for all occasions. Shop here often, the stock changes so frequently that even the staff is amazed on a daily basis.
Red Wing Confectionery
323 Main St.
Red Wing, MN 55066
One of the best handmade gifts is a handmade treat. Red Wing Confectionery has been making seasonal candies, chocolates and treats for years. Handmade chocolate in milk, dark or white is combined with high-quality candies and sweets for amazing results. Red Wing Confectionery also carries delectable baked goods, ice cream and coffee for those that want to hang out and enjoy the smells. Apple treats made from fresh-picked fruit are a fall specialty as well. It also takes custom orders to accommodate picky eaters.
Fine Craft Collective
506 Division St.
Northfield, MN 55057
What started as a humble holiday craft fair has turned into a large cooperative business during the holiday season. Local artists gather annually in a gallery space to offer handmade crafts and unique gifts to the public. The gallery is open from mid-November until Christmas Eve this year and artists will be on hand to help you pick out the perfect gift for someone who has everything or just wants something special. The most popular items featured include jewelry, decorative art, pottery and homemade clothing. Check out the website for events and holiday specials offered throughout the year.
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Andrea Wodele is a freelance writer who has lived in the Twin Cities for eight years. She loves covering all things Minnesota and her work can be found on Examiner.com.