Oxford’s Top Indie Shops For Kids Christmas Gifts
Toady we welcome Laura from the blog Hello Mister Magpie. Laura blogs about family life, adventures and creating memories, so we thought who better to explore indie shopping for kids in Oxford.
Shopping for kids Christmas gifts can be great fun, and a good wander around Oxford is a wonderful source of gift inspiration. We are spoilt for choice with a huge range of indie shops, many of which stock unique and thoughtful gift ideas for the little ones in your life!
We are lucky enough to have Boswells, a wonderful independent department store, with a large toy department. When visiting, I often end up staying there for hours if I’m with my kids, as they love it there! There is a whole floor of toys and gift ideas and creative, and interactive toy displays, such as Brio train tracks to play with and a colourful Duplo wall. The range of toys is pretty impressive, so whether you’re looking for a new baby gift, educational or craft materials for older kids, or even the popular brands such as Lego or Barbie, they have a good selection to choose from. Always useful as a reliable one-stop shop in the run up to Christmas. I know I’ll always be able to tick quite a few things off the shopping list here.
The toy department at Boswells is also really well-located right next to the in-store cafe, should you need a well-deserved coffee break after your Christmas shopping!
The Covered Market is home to loads of great indie stores, and is so much fun to explore in the run up to Christmas; the carol singers, beautiful florists windows, greengrocers stalls with tempting displays; it’s such a great Christmassy atmosphere to surround yourself with. One of my favourite shops in the Covered Market is Two Foot Nothing, which stocks colourful kids clothing for ages 0-10 years, as well as a selection of traditional toys and gifts. As Oxford’s only independent childrens wear store, it has a lot to offer, including Frugi clothing, Hatley rain wear and the cutest leather baby shoes, which would make an amazing gift.
Next door to Two Foot Nothing is it’s sister shop Next to Nothing, which as well as its regular range of clothing, always has a range of gifts at Christmas time, and often some really cool colourful socks! For fun stocking fillers and accessories it’s well worth a visit.
Very nearby in the Covered Market is iScream, a traditional Italian style gelateria, and home to Wicked, Oxford’s only independent gourmet chocolate counter. It is actually impossible to walk past the gorgeous chocolate displays in the window with popping into the shop! Whilst artisan chocolate might not seem the most obvious gift for kids, it always seems to be a well-received gift, especially for older ones. A few chocolates, beautifully packaged feels like such a Christmas treat, and it would be shame to save it just for the grown ups!
The Old Fire Station, just off Gloucester Green is also a great place to explore whilst Christmas gift shopping. The arts and exhibitions venue includes a shop stocked with a handpicked selection of products designed by independent designers. They have a great range of jewellery and prints, as well as some cool kids t shirts. It’s a great place to shop if you’re looking for something modern and unique, especially for older kids. My eight year old has a lovely necklace from jewellery maker I am acrylic at the top of her Christmas wish-list.
If you’re looking for a creative gift, Broad Canvas on Broad Street has an extensive range of art and craft supplies. Kids love proper art materials, and a set of watercolour paints, origami papers, or some beautiful colouring pencils or crayons make a lovely gift, to spark their artistic talents! The displays in Broad Canvas, all arranged by colour of paint, cotton reels and stacks of paper, make it a pleasure to take time browsing. The staff are always really helpful and knowledgeable too, and would be able to recommend products for the little one you are gift-hunting for!
Podarok, on High Street, is another good stop for gift shopping, and offers a range of beautiful items and homeware. They have a great choice of greetings cards and stocking fillers. Podarok also has the most gorgeous range of lampshades from Lush Designs London; featuring fox cubs, piglets and owls, they would be a really unique gift for a stylish kids bedroom or nursery.
Gifting for kids is definitely where the Christmas magic is, especially if you know that you’ve been supporting your local indies at the same time!
We’re so grateful to Laura for sharing her indie shopping adventures. Check out Laura’s beautiful Instagram feed where she shares musings and snapshots of family life in Oxfordshire.