Small Business — 10 December 2011
Alexandria stores sell great gifts at affordable price points

Finding the right gift at the right price is not easy. But less than $50 and $100 hits a reasonable price range when buying gifts for loved ones and friends.

Alexandria’s stores offer a variety of wonderful gifts at these two price points. The following highlights affordable presents from local retailers, making your holiday shopping that much easier.

Zoe Boutique, at 130 S. Union St., has Inslee by Design 2012 calendars, earrings and camisoles for less than $50. There also are great gifts for less than $100: a John Wind initial pom pom silver necklace or pom pom bracelet, Chan Luu infinity scarves and earrings, a selection of beautiful silver rings, and ADMK jewelry necklaces and earrings. On Saturday, Zoe will host an ADMK Jewelry Trunk Show from 1 to 5 p.m.

For fun and quality gifts, check out Red Barn Merchantile at 113 S. Columbus St. The store sells a Three Sheets to the Wind flask, slate cheese board and Bloody Mary mixer for less than $50. And for less than $100, there is the ever-pleasing Strand alarm clock. Be sure to check out other fine presents for less than $100 available at the store or at redbarnmercantile.com.

Hysteria, at 125 S. Fairfax St., is another popular spot for holiday shopping. It retails crystal stud earrings, Leila Lou 100-percent essential oils perfume and Sondra Roberts four-snap wallets for less than $50. And Hysteria is not just for women. The store has some excellent selections for men, including Vineyard Vines ties and Royal Highnies lounge pants for less than $100. In addition, the store carries Dedua cuff in brass and salmon skin, Royal Highnies tunic for ladies and Roberta Freymann brightly colored tunics.

Almost next door to Hysteria is Shoe Hive on South Fairfax Street. The store has Hunter welly warmers, Blee Inara elastic and macrame infinity bracelets, Kobo soy candles and Hat Attack knit gloves for less than $50. And bumping up into the next price range, Shoe Hive sells a Tory Burch dopp kit and the Deux Lux bowery mini-messenger bag.

Wandering over to 924 King St., Bloomers specializes in women’s gifts. For less than $50, grab Mary Green sleep eye masks, Malabar pajama pants, Hanky Panky items and a travel bra bag. For less than $100, pick up Mary Green silk boy shorts and cami.

Bellacara, at 1000 King St., also contains memorable gifts for women, such as cupcake bath bombs from Smitten, Philosophy gift sets, Jonathan Adler candles and Stila lip glaze sets. At a higher price scale, the store sells Gucci Flora fragrance and Kate Spade Twirl fragrance, which are worth every penny and still less than $100.

The Hour has vintage and contemporary gifts perfect for the cocktail hour. The 1015 King St. store retails fantastic gifts that are special, genuine and memorable. For example, there are sea blue martini glasses, cocktail picks designed like swords, an absinth spoon, a felt wine holder and cheese spreaders for less than $50. More pricey presents — such as cuff links, a Christmas tree tray (and many other trays), an English pewter flask, two Culver red-and-gold snifters and Glo Hill ice tongs — are available for less than $100.

The eclectic Gossypia boutique at 325 Cameron St. sells something for everyone: folk art nativity sets from around the world, jewelry, handbags, scarves, belts, dresses and small leather goods. These affordable treasures retail for less than $50. Some of the dresses, jewelry and other items cost less than $100, but are still a fantastic bargain.

In lovely Del Ray, A Show of Hands offers unique jewelry, ornaments and gifts crafted by local artists. Almost everything sells for less than $50 so stop by the 2301 Mount Vernon Ave. store, which represents more than 200 artists.

For something different, Casart Coverings at www.casartcoverings.com has mural elements, children’s growth charts and stair risers for less than $50 and less than $100. For more information, call 703-549-1622 or check out the website for a unique and memorable gift that brightens walls and can be repositioned, removed and reused. Designs include flowers, shells, butterflies, balloons, birds and leaves, as well as a Dellarobbia garland that can be reused, year after year.

Another different present idea is food, which seldom disappoints. One of Alexandria’s most well-known holiday treats is a Shuman’s Bakery jelly cake. Northern Virginia native Willard Scott of NBC “Today Show” fame has praised the Shuman jelly cake, which has delighted people since 1876. The jelly cake sells for $28 online at www.shumansbakery.com or by calling 703-683-1876. Shuman’s Bakery will deliver jelly cakes for free in the local zip codes 22301 to 22315.

Alexandria businesses contain great gifts at affordable prices for this holiday season. Not only that, but buying local helps Alexandria businesses. So why go to a big box store when there are so many wonderful options locally.

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