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Go-to gifting favorites of fellow small business owners

Go-to gifting favorites of fellow small business owners


“Candles are one of the best parts of a dark, harsh winter,” says Christa Santa Maria, who turns to Naked Up North's rotating selection when gifting.

No one champions creative endeavors in Western New York quite like fellow small business owners. In search of fresh gifting inspiration, we turned to a talented lineup of local makers—ones we’ve featured already—and asked them to share the shop-local love. Here are their go-tos for gifting this holiday season (or anytime you want to make someone’s day).

“I give locally made gifts because I know I’m directly supporting my peer makers, the local economy and helping to spread awareness for local brands I love.” — Kaitlyn Niland, Niland Candles

Cassie Elsaesser


 A favorite of Gretchen Meyers, Peg’s Hardware jewelry

“I’m an art junkie to the core and I can’t get enough of Cassie’s collection. She has this main figure, a woman, and it’s like watching her go on this ever-evolving journey though color and shape. I love them.” @cassieelsaesser

Dragonfly Jams & Jellies

A favorite of Kristen Horn, Dognanny custom pet sweaters

“Made right in Youngstown by one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet. It’s more fun than wine as a hostess gift and it will change the way you look at peanut butter and jelly sandwiches forever!” @DragonflyJamsandJellies

Her flavor of choice? “Peppered Cranberry, without a doubt!”

Naked Up North candles

A favorite of Christa Santa Maria, Talouha handmade leather goods

“They have a constantly evolving selection of beautiful essential oil scents made with soy wax and coconut oil. And candles are one of the best parts of a dark, harsh winter.”

Black Monarchy


A favorite of Zandra Cunningham, Zandra Beauty

“Family run artisan global experience my entire family loves. All the products are sourced responsibly and have means. I have to feel connected to the entrepreneurs I shop with and support.”

Iza Does It

A favorite of Kaitlyn Niland, Niland Candles

“I always know his line will deliver an option for everyone on my list, from serving boards to Buffalo magnets to earrings. He works with hardwoods and acrylics, featuring bright colors and geometric patterns.”

Blue Table Chocolates

A favorite of Christa Santa Maria, Talouha

“One of the best gifts I received last year was a box of Blue Table Chocolates. They make some of the most amazing, beautiful chocolate I’ve ever had, with really original flavor combinations. Chocolate is pretty much a sure thing, so I’ll definitely be going there this year for gifts.”

Roots Rock ReBelle

A favorite of Zandra Cunningham, Zandra Beauty

“I am obsessed. The artisan is truly talented and can hand-make all things from earrings to runway fashion and bathing suits. Every winter I gift her crochet scarves and hats because they are soft, super creative and warm. The thing I love the most is that no two pieces are the same.” @rootsrockrebelle

Bison Botanics


A favorite of Katie Monacelli, B Kind City apparel

“Their products are incredible; you can find them in our house at any given time! The team over a Bison is so warm and welcoming to educating new customers on the powerful effects of CBD as they walk you through finding the right fit for your needs.”

Lockwood’s Greenhouses & Farm

A favorite of Laura Cott, LaCott Fine Art

“I often shop their gift shop, which features local artists, and love the option to purchase a gift card. They have a great selection of house plants to hold us over until summer!”

Eat Off Art


A favorite of Zandra Cunningham, Zandra Beauty

“Created by Alexa and Edreys, two of my favorite humans. They are running a superfamily of dope artisans; each family member brings a unique flavor to the world. From custom kicks to hand-painted earrings to one-of-a-kind art, they are simply unforgettable. Changing the game for real.”

Linwood Candle

A favorite of Gretchen Meyers, Peg’s Hardware

“You absolutely can’t go wrong with Amy’s fresh, but not overpowering, blends. I also love a good soy wax candle and I know she is very conscious about the oils she uses.”

Issa Mars

A favorite of Christa Santa Maria, Talouha

“She uses all recycled and ethically sourced metals. Just visiting her shop, The Physical Space, is a treat. It’s a little gallery-like jewelry box of the most beautiful organic and handmade goods.”

Trebird Jewelry


A favorite of Kaitlyn Niland, Niland Candles

“I am partial to the sterling rings and cuffs. There are both subtle and statement pieces in her collections, so I’m always able to find something for everyone’s taste, and for myself of course.

Oxford Pennant

A favorite of Gretchen Meyers, Peg’s Hardware

“No brainer. They have an option for just about everyone and every occasion. The Camp Flags are my go-to.”

Breezy Burrito Bar

A favorite of Katie Monacelli, B Kind City

“A gift card is one of my go-tos for newcomers to the City of Good Neighbors as well as local natives to the 716. The vibe at Breezy is always fun and relaxed with incredible cocktails and awesome food for any dietary needs. I love that I can grab vegan dishes at Breezy, which is something that can be tricky to come by.”

Peg’s Hardware

A favorite of Laura Cott, LaCott Fine Art (and Katie Monacelli, too!)

“I always recommend Peg’s Hardware as my go-to gift, for not only my friends and family but for myself. Gretchen’s style is timeless, simple and classic. She really takes care to source great materials and you can see the level of detail and passion in each piece.”

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