Local, Product Reviews

Your Holiday Guide To: Local and DIY gifts

The holidays are right around the corner— I swear they jump up on us faster every year. I don’t know about you but shopping during this season causes me a whole lot of stress and anxiety. I often avoid malls because of the sheer amount of people. What ever holiday it is you choose to celebrate though, there are lots of great, local and DIY gift ideas for a range of people in your life, and they don’t involve dealing with crowds!

Face and Body Scrubs

Who doesn’t love to indulge in a little TLC over the holidays. Scrubs are a great way to feel rejuvenated and fresh and you don’t have to spend a lot of money on them! Here are some of my favourite DIY scrubs and also ones that are carried in stores.

Coffee and Honey

What you’ll need:
1 part coffee grounds
1 part honey (preferably Manuka honey if you can find it)
1 part coconut oil
small mason jar and lid
festive ribbon/decoration









*Measurements will vary depending on how much you want to make. A small jar  like this one will be enough for about a month or so if used only the face, 2-3 times a week. However, if you want to make more and package it in a larger mason jar, you can do so as well. Be aware that because this scrub uses ingredients that are most effective when fresh, that it’s best to use it within 2-3 months and keep it stored in a cool, dry place.

Brown Sugar, Coconut and Lavender

What you’ll need
1 cup brown sugar or fine sea salt (don’t use on your face is using sea salt though!)
1/2 cup coconut oil
5-10 drops of lavender essential oil or dried lavender
small mason jar
festive ribbon or decoration

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl, package in the mason jar and decorate as you did the coffee and honey scrub, or mix it up! This scrub is  moisturizing, refreshing and can be modified with any essential oil to add whatever feeling you want! Citrus oils are great when used in the morning to feel awakened. Just be careful when using intense oils like peppermint or tea tree though as they can cause irritation if they get into those “private” areas haha.

Lone Goat Soap Co.

Lone Goat Soap Co.
Lone Goat Soap Co.






I stumbled across this company on a recent visit to Whistler at the Christmas market. They use ingredients that are local, sustainable and all of their soaps and bath salts smell HEAVENLY! Find them on Etsy or at Neighbourhood quality goods on Main Street.


There are tons of places in Vancouver to find trinkets, bits and bobbles to use for jewelry that looks just as good as something you’d spend a fortune on. Especially these days, it’s all about simple and minimalistic jewelry.

DIY Chokers and Lariats

What you’ll need/might need:
any type of ribbon, lace or string/rope
jewelry clasps
gems or beads
fabric glue
small tweezers/pliers

I think it’s best for this one to just reference photos, but these are SO simple to make and take almost no time. Most of what you need can be bought at Michaels or, my preference, Urban Source on Main Street. Choose what type of material you want your choker or lariat to be. Decide if you want/need it to tie on or clasp on. Really, the world is your oyster. My favourite places to find beads, materials or gems are flea markets or Crystal Ark on Granville Island.

Where To Buy: Rings and Necklaces

Although I haven’t dabbled much in the way of ring making,  I do have some favourite places to find them!

Van Caissey
I mentioned this boutique in a past blog. It’s a great place to find small, unique, locally made and second-hand items!

East Side Flea
If you live in Vancouver and haven’t yet checked out the East Side Flea market, you should go now! It’s such a fun way to spend a night/day and also to explore some of Vancouver’s best vendors. They always host a great variety of vendors/shops and there’s always something to see, someone to meet and yummy food!

Home Decor

Riding The Pine

Started by Karou and Dave Coats, both graphic artists living in North Vancouver, these pieces are heavily influenced by type-face and Canadian lifestyle. From shadow boxes to decorative pillows, there are a number unique pieces that would make a great gift idea! Shop them online at ridingthepine.ca

East Van Bus Scroll Pillow Photo Credit: Riding the Pine
East Van Bus Scroll Pillow Photo Credit: Riding the Pine








Walrus, a boutique retailer located on Cambie St., carries a wide selection of established and up-and-coming Canadian designers. Find them online or at 3408 Cambie St.