Get ready for my BEST holiday gift guide yet: the Canadian Holiday Gift Guide for 2018! I don’t mean maple syrup and enamel pins that say “Sorry” – I’m talking gift ideas with NO international shipping, NO border runs, NO duties – just a whole lot of gorgeous, stylish items that are available for Canadian shipping, with some items even handmade in Canada. It’s the first Canadian holiday gift guide I’ve ever put together! Because I live in a border town, I travel to the States weekly and have a US address for shipping. While I try to shop local and Canadian-made whenever I can, when it comes to shopping big box retailers like West Elm, Overstock and Amazon, I always default to US shipping and shopping the .com, not .ca, versions of these sites because it’s fast and usually free to ship – my little secret is that I don’t even have to pay tax every time because the border guards often waive people through for less than $100. My guess is it’s not worth their time to process so many little purchases? When I put together my gift guides (see my gift ideas for him, gift ideas for the cottage and gift ideas for homebodies), I shopped how I would normally shop, choosing US-based shops and shipping availability. Many of my readers live in the States, so I didn’t think anything of it until a few Canadian readers ask me to add a items that are more Canadian-friendly to my holiday shopping guides, but I did one better: I put together a Canadian exclusive holiday gift guide. These are my top picks from our own retailers! Some of these items are even made in Canada, but at the very least they’re all shipping from Canada and I even double checked availability to make sure these items could arrive in time for the holidays! So check out my Canadian holiday gift guide below and tell me what you think!
Design House is based in Vancouver and offers tons of chic and quirky home decor accessories for gifting. I’d choose the Tea Rex (lol) kettle. Designed by Michael Graves in 1985, the kettle with the bird-shaped whistle became one of the icons of 20th century design. To mark the 30th anniversary, the whistle was turned into a charming “supernatural reptile, a prehistoric, mythological and futuristic creature all at the same time: TEA Rex”. And loook at the pale blue/mint paired with the chrome. Gorgeous and funny and useful and I want one!
I also love this paaka wood handled serving set, made in Finland – and of course no home is complete without this gorgeous Iittala Ultima Thule centerpiece platter! It’s a timeless piece and Iittala is definitely heirloom quality glassware.
SOL Designs, sold through many stockists including the AGO online shop, makes a number of chic products including these environmentally friendly purses, using upcycled vinyl flooring and plywood. Plus, SOL Designs is proudly partnered with Smile/Epic St-Malo, and is helping to creating employment for adults living with intellectual disabilities.
Right next door to Design House is Marimekko Vancouver – Canada’s only Marimekko concept store (lucky for anyone living in Vancouver – but they ship, too!). SO many pretty finds, like this platter and this sophisticated take on the classic pieni unikko, re-imagined in an indigo scarf.
Not only are Bluebellgray products stylish and beautiful – they’re ready for easy Canadian shipping because they’re available at The Bay (and I’ve also seen it at Chapters Indigo). While the line is designed in Scotland, some of the pieces, like throw pillows, are made in Canada!
The Bay has a Martha Stewart throw that’s motivational and cozy, and while it’s not Canadian designed or made, you won’t get slammed with duties – you can even pick up at some locations. And I think the words of encouragement and positivity is a very Canadian thing (and a very good thing)!
I wanted to include some local businesses in my Canadian holiday gift guide, but I needed to find ones that offer shipping! Finnport is a local-to-me shop but they offer next day expedited shipping with Canada Post and even offer complimentary gift wrapping upon request. The store is CHOCK-full of amazing designs from brands like Iittala, Marimekko, Sagaform, Kalevala and many more. This dog canister is the cutest but you need to pair it with this dog mug. Again, you can’t go wrong with anything Iittala,like this deep blue Alvar Aalto vase, or this mod cast iron candle holder. For the most amazing gift idea, try a much-coveted Toikka bird!
Chapters Indigo always gets me with their cute home decor stuff, which is so annoying. But the buyers/designers over there love turquoise and so every season, every collection, there’s cute things I want. Now I see that so many of the impulse buys I can’t resist when I’m picking up a magazine or novel are also available online and the temptation won’t stop! At least there’s no international shipping and duty. Right now this striped aqua mug, teal plaid mug, and insanely adorable polar bear mug are calling my name. I can’t even with this polar bear tea pot – look at those pretty mint green accents. And the polar bear is holding a tiny Canadian flag!! No Canadian holiday gift guide is complete without a polar bear holding our flag.
If you need great tea, a local shop (the International House of Tea) – run by someone I’ve known since I was 13 – has delicious, custom blended teas with cute little sample packs!
Hubby told me about Whyte Watches, an independent watchmaking company based in British Columbia. This watch design celebrates Canada’s 150th, and its vast expanse, sea to sea (perfect for this Canadian holiday gift guide – I did not choose this simply because it’s teal and vintage-inspired.
Retro Festive is a Canadian company specializing in cute, quirky, retro holiday decor and gifts with lots of pop culture references. My fave is the PJs – you can by a matching set for the whole fam jam. These antler pug socks are also too cute. Based in Oakville, ON, they ship FAST and free for orders over $59.
Every now and then I think about getting an essential oil diffuser, which I’ve already earmarked as a great gift idea because essential oils are trending so hard. Now I’m including it in this Canadian holiday gift guide because I found one from The Bay which is turquoise, modern, and portable! It’s the cable that’s been a deterrent, but this one is rechargeable which is niiiiice.
These stunning modern teal earrings are ready to ship in 1-3 days (from Canada), so you can still get them in time for gift giving! Handmade and really unusual, sure to make someone happy.
This grapefruit and rosemary Murphy and Jo candle is made in Canada.
Looking for more candles or candle box sets? A friend on Instagram told me about Coal & Canary and their hand poured Candles are made in Winnipeg, MB.
Here’s a neat idea with a little bit of Canada literally stuffed inside: Balsamea’s aromatic Balsam fir pillows are filled with dried and ground fir needles, and a small amount of shredded foam. The textile (100% cotton) is hand screen-printed with original images and the gorgeous aroma will last years.
Indigo Arrow is another Winnipeg-based shop I learned about from an Instagram friend, and there you’ll find beautiful textiles shipping from Canada.
Lovely Body soaps and bath bombs are made right here in my hometown and they’re available for sale on Etsy. Full disclosure: I’ve never bought or tried them, but they fly off the shelves so I think they’re really good (almost 9000 sales on Etsy alone and they’re sold locally as well). The products are as simple, natural & organic as possible, developed by a registered nurse.
This beautiful marbled pottery by RKCeramics is handmade in Canada and ships from Canada, so you won’t pay duties or outrageous international shipping. Plus the swirling marbled designs are modern and sure to wow.
So I have found a new obsession: I am smitten with Meraki Leather Studio – look at this amazing bag! – but shipping is weeks because the bags are custom, so they won’t arrive for Christmas. BUT this gorgeous bag, handmade in Canada, is ready to ship in 1-2 business days.
This Japanese style tea cup with it’s pretty robin’s egg blue glaze is delicate and perfect, handmade in Canada and ready to ship in 1-2 business days (from Winnipeg).
Don’t forget: EQ3 is Canadian but there’s more than just furniture in store! EQ3 carries Marimekko, beautiful throws, modern flatware, gorgeous tableware and, my fave, the Eames Hang-it-All (now in BLUE). I have the all white version and I love it so much, I’m even considering a second one when we’re less broke!
And look at this awesome clock! I NEED this for the bathroom:
This simple and minimalist Aqua Chalcedony/Quartz ring is 925 Sterling Silver with 14K Gold Vermeil for a lasting shine. It’s handmade in Canada, ready to ship in 1 day, and it’s such a great price too.
Umbra is based in Toronto and you can find their cute designs everywhere – even home improvement stores like Rona and Lowe’s! Here are my favorite picks, which includes the innovative Vines wall art, Copper Elephant ring holder, and Tesora storage box.
You can’t go wrong with pottery as a gift! This mod speckled stoneware planter is so unique and special – and it’s handmade in Canada.
These are the earrings worn by Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge during her Canadian tour in Carcross, Yukon in September of 2016. Handmade in Canada, ready to ship in 1-3 days.
This handmade walnut shelf with prism brackets is ready to ship and it’s stunning!
Made in Canada since 1971, the Robson watch (in mint and walnut naturally) has me ready to give up my JORD watch! It’s unisex so I’m trying to convince Hubby to buy this lol.
Oh, and how about a gem or two from everyone’s favorite vintage seller?? I’m just going to squeeze myself into this Canadian holiday gift guide because I ship Canada Post and USPS so no one ever gets slammed with duties or international shipping rates. Convo me before a purchase with your postal code and I can work to get those shipping prices even lower. This Danish style wood carving set is totally mint and has such a modern look. These caramel-hued bakelite steak knives are so gorgeous in real life and vintage steak knives always sell well in the shop, so I guarantee they’ll be well received!
These enamel napkin rings are the sweetest host/hostess gift and pair so well with Indigo dyed linens.
Check out the shop for more vintage goodies that ship from Canada! I know I’ve missed a ton of good shops but I hope you loved this Canadian Holiday Gift Guide. If there’s a shop you want to see featured, pop it in the comments. I had so many great recommendations on Instagram, but some were already sold out of inventory so I didn’t include them! Thanks to everyone who provided feedback and happy shopping!