Hey, want to head to the Mall? Fight traffic, hunt for parking, and wait in long lines at the stores? Neither did we. So this year MomsLA wanted to support some local businesses that are making amazing, unique gifts right here in Los Angeles. Oh and by the way? We saved ourselves from all that aforementioned frustration and had a ball along the way. You probably will, too.
We had a really terrific time, first picking the 7 places, then visiting these amazing businesses – and wrapping up our gift lists in one awesome shopping trip. We chose gifts we wanted to buy (and receive) and we wanted to be sure they were unique and made here. Join us on our journey around LA, shopping and dining – and having a wonderful “only-in-LA” day.
Seven Great Made in LA Gifts Perfect for the Holidays (or Anytime)
Multiple locations around Los Angeles
We started our day with candy, because why not? We’re grown-ups and can do anything we want. (Can’t we?) Plus the flagship store and factory on La Cienega is where they say Lucille Ball did her research for the famous scene from the Lucy show where she and Ethel try their hands at working on the candy line. We stuck to shopping and found lots of delightful candy gift options at See’s. Check out the lollipops that are also ornaments! And all the gift boxes. So many great choices; we bought bags full! Delicious and always a fun gift. You know they make special packaging for every holiday, right? Made right here in Los Angeles.
We’ve been fans of this locally-made soap since it launched in Mar Vista in 2005, and we’re still fans. Sarah can’t help but buy the Candy Cane soap every holiday season. (And give it away as gifts to those she loves.) The online store (the Mar Vista location closed earlier this year) has soaps, scrubs, oil slathers, and lip balms, and we bought some of each. You can pick items a la carte or choose a gift basket. They ship worldwide from their website, but they make it all here in LA.
Fifi and Romeo
7282 Beverly Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Every dog has his day, but not every dog gets a couture sweater made from upcycled cashmere at Fifi and Romeo. (Although we’re sure they all deserve one and would Love them!) This shop, which is open by appointment only, caters to the most fabulous dog owners around the world. Founded by a Hollywood costume designer, these one-of-a-kind gifts for dogs (and their owners) are made here in LA and are beyond fab.
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3014 W.Olympic Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90006
We love mole – don’t you? We also love Bricia and Paulina Lopez, two sisters who help run their family’s famous Oaxacan restaurant – and who also host a fabulous podcast called Super Mamás, which we’ve been honored to be guests on. But back to the food! Jonathan Gold has named Guelagetza in his 101 Best Restaurant List this year, and with a ton of good reasons. It was the perfect place for lunch on our shopping day extravaganza, so we had chilaquiles with two kinds of mole and we were so very happy. Then we bought mole gifts for our favorite family members, and vowed to make the drive to K-town more often. It used to be located in Palms once upon a time, which was sooooo convenient, but we digress. If you haven’t been, you must go.
Cafe & Store: 130 W. Bruno Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012
This is a café, a bakery, a shop for merchandise – and a movement, all in one. If you don’t already know the story, Known as the largest “… gang intervention, rehabilitation and re-entry program in the world,” Homeboy provides job training and opportunities, and along the way, the products they sell help fund the important 3work they do. Homegirl Café is wonderful and we love their food. We bought gifts in the store for our most deserving friends, like T-shirts, Father Greg Boyle’s books (he’s got a new one out called Barking to the Choir – and here’s our affiliate link to buy it), and their homemade jams, jellies and butters. This model of offering an opportunity for people to change their lives with a job is something we wholeheartedly support and we hope you do as well.
Shop Mi Vida
5159 York Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90042
Yvonne turned Sarah on to this store and now they’re both fans. They make their own T-shirts, literally silk screening them right in the store, plus they sell one-of-a-kind items made by other local artists. Sarah got a cactus for her desk (was that authorized?). And they are seriously connected to the art scene in LA, having been a part of the NELA Art Walk every 2nd Saturday for over 10 years. They’ve got amazing murals that will probably be different the next time you come by, so go often! Love this store!
Hedley & Bennett
Showroom 3864 South Santa Fe Ave.
Vernon, CA 90058
Sarah had been given a couple of Hedley & Bennetts years ago – and Yvonne was taken with them right away. We knew we had to have the kind of work gear worn by some of the best chefs in the world! These aprons are super chic and they are made in LA. We both want to look awesome when we’re cooking and of course we want our gift recipients to look fabulous, too. Plus once we heard the company’s story we were hooked. We love that it was started by a young woman, and only about 5 years ago. We love that she has a pet pig, who’s also the company’s mascot, and we love their headquarters in Vernon, where they make and sell their amazing products. Just don’t tell the pig how close they are to the Farmer John plant (really close).
Sarah Auerswald is the co-Founder of MomsLA.com. She and Yvonne shopped and dined and spent their own money at each of these businesses. This is not a sponsored post and they were not compensated for their time. But they did finish their holiday shopping, so there’s that.