Edinburgh Independent Gift Guide

Edinburgh, UK

It’s been on my mind for some time to put together an independent gift guide to Edinburgh and since we’re on the run-up to Christmas, I figured what better time to finally get around to it. I don’t know about you but I come across so many lovely brands on a nearly daily basis yet when an occasion arises to buy a gift, I often draw a blank. So, I have filled this guide with a few recommendations from Edinburgh's Indie Streets and local maker stores to an under £30 gift guide.

On a final note, as hard as I try, this guide will never fully encompass all of Edinburgh's wonderful small businesses so if I’ve missed out your favourite business or haven’t mentioned your favourite maker, please do include them in the comments section!  

Edinburgh’s Indie Streets  

Edinburgh is renowned for its vibrant independent business scene and several streets have become havens for independent stores, here are a few to visit:

Stockbridge: Stockbridge is a great place to visit when looking for gift inspiration as the neighbourhood has a wonderful high street as well as St Stephen Street which is a haven for independent shopping. A few shops I'd recommend popping into on the high street include Rare Birds Book Shop, which features great books by great women; Galerie Mirages, a cornucopia of jewellery from around the world; Caoba, a fascinating Mexican gift shop; and more.

St Stephen Street is just a short walk from Stockbridge's high street and is home to a range of brilliant stores such as the ever-so-charming bookshops, Golden Hare Books and Ginger and Pickles; serene lifestyle store, The Method; stylish vegan clothing and lifestyle store, Treen ; beautifully-curated fine jewellery store, ætla; and Space at Seventeen, a pop-up space with a brilliant residency line up. Bonus: At the very end of St Stephen Street and beginning of St Vincent Street you'll find Grow Urban, the ideal place to pick up a present for any houseplant lovers.

New Town: Broughton Street is another must-visit indie shopping street. Keep an eye out for ethical homewares and lifestyle store, Stor Lifestyle; tea-lovers paradise, Rosevear Tea; independent art and gift shop Curiouser & Curiouser and stylish Scandi-inspired lifestyle store, Lifestrory!  

Bruntsfield & Morningside: Bruntsfield’s high street is filled with so many lovely stores like quirky gift shop, Halibut & Herring; beautiful clothing store, Biscuit Clothing; florist and botanical store, Snapdragon; award-winning bookshop, The Edinburgh Bookshop plus another branch of Rosevear Tea and Curiouser! Morningside High Street also has a few gems including chocolatiers Edward & Irwyn; delightful homeware shop, Hestie and more! 

Leith Walk: One of Edinburgh’s longest high streets, Leith Walk is home to a range of independent shops including a variety of wonderful bookshops like Topping & Company, Typewronger Books (4a Haddington Place) and Argonaut Books as well as homeware and lifestyle gift shops, Handsel and Logan Malloch Ltd; small batch candle store, Druid Edinburgh; loose leaf tea store, PekoeTea and more!  

Local Maker Stores:

There are a few shops in Edinburgh which solely stock independent makers and provide a wide range of gift inspiration:

An Independent Zebra (88-92 Raeburn Place, Stockbridge):
An Independent Zebra was started by makers for makers and now stocks over 160 small independent businesses!

The Red Door Gallery (42 Victoria Street, Old Town): The Red Door Gallery is a hub of creativity for the visual arts and proudly supports the work of over 150 artists and creative businesses.

Leith Collective (Ocean Terminal, Leith): The Leith Collective is home to a collection of unique and handmade products made using sustainable recycled materials. With over 130 artists and makers from all over Scotland, there’s plenty of choice!

A Few Gift Ideas (under £30):

For those of you who are looking for specific gift ideas, here's a list of 10 ideas which will hopefully provide some inspiration. Two disclaimers before we begin, as this is a list of personal recommendations, I must admit it’s by no means impartial as I’ve included a few talented friends’ work plus I’ve chosen items that I would enjoy gifting or receiving. In no particular order, let's begin!

1. Candles: There are a whole host of wonderful candle-makers based in Edinburgh and a few of my personal favourites are Kind Candles, Can to Candle, Druid Candles, Melrose Candle Co., Edinburgh Candlemaker Co and Edinburgh Honey Co.

2. Colouring Edinburgh Book by Helen C Stark (£8.49): Helen has been a friend of mine for quite some time and I’m a huge fan of her Edinburgh colouring book.

3. Sweet Treats: For friends or loved ones with a bit of a sweet tooth, I'd recommend checking out Edward & Irwyn, The Marshmallow Lady and Coco Chocolatier.

4. Rachelle W Design’s Tea Towel (£14): Rachelle is one of my closest friends and she also runs a brilliant small business. Her foodie and Edinburgh-themed tea towels are just one of the many beautiful items she sells.  

5. Loose Leaf Tea or Coffee: For tea lovers, I'd recommend checking out Rosevear Tea, Pekoe Tea or Eteaket Tea. For coffee drinkers, Mr Eion, Williams and Johnson and Obadiah Coffee do a great bag of locally roasted coffee.

6. Adriana De Matos’ Scottish Wildlife Enamel Mug (£16): Adriana is another talented Edinburgh-based artist, I'm particularly fond of her wildlife series!

7. Blind Date With a Book (from £7.99): I've spotted this in a few independent bookshops such as Golden Hare Books and Topping & Company and thought it sounded like a fun idea. If you haven't heard of it, the "blind date books" are wrapped then a few clues are written on the paper to give you a clue of what type of book is hidden inside.

8. TBCo Gloves or Wrist Warmers (£30): TBCo has a beautiful range of finely knit merino cashmere gloves in a variety of colours.

9. Hidden Scotland Magazine (£15): Hidden Scotland produces beautiful biannual magazines showcasing the best that Scotland has to offer.

10. Pockets of Pretty: An Instagrammer's Edinburgh (£20): Sneaking in my book as the last entry. Pockets of Pretty is a labour of love and is filled with various neighbourhood guides, coffee shop recommendations, day trip ideas and more!

1 comment

  1. Wow Shawna, that independent gift guide is incredibly thorough and detailed. I still can't wait to visit Edinburgh. I try to document these many wonderful recommendations every chance I get. Thank you for putting that hard work into this blog!


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