Stuck for Christmas shopping? Try Fig & Sparrow’s festive list

Stevie Mackenzie-Smith

There’s no escaping it: Christmas is a-coming. Forget the fray and go boutique in your hunt for the perfect Christmas present.

Christmas shopping. It’s a joyous experience isn’t it? The seasonal adverts filling our television screens tell of heartwarming, pink-cheeked festivities. It’s supposed to be all noses pressed against glowing windows, swaying stacks of gorgeous parcels and heaps of loving patience. So the reality of slow-walkers in shopping centres and a distinct absence of snow makes the actual experience a daunting obligation. But would it really be so bad if Christmas shopping was, whisper it, enjoyable?

Well, it can be. Markets, craft fairs and independent shops make for a more pleasant experience, especially when you throw into a coffee-and-pecan-pie pit stop into the mix. Step forward, Fig & Sparrow, the sort of place where a “two for you, one for me” present buying philosophy can take hold. A dangerously convenient walking distance from the Creative Tourist office, we asked them to compile a gift guide of their top items – and they came up with not one but two. This week’s list, then, has a vintage and retro feel to it. Keep your eyes peeled for next week’s local maker list.

Top buys from Fig & Sparrow – vintage and retro-styled (all pictured above)

Try this Teapot (£46) from Dutch design company, Jansen+co – a design classic, timeless, tasteful and a must for design-loving tea drinkers. Sunshine yellow to match your egg yolks in the morning. Devon-based and Fairtrade suppliers, Nkuku are behind this Chai Tea Set (£25) – especially good this time of year for serving mulled wine to friends. Every child deserves something wonderful on Christmas Day, and wonderful comes in wooden form courtesy of this Push Along Aeroplane by Hape (£10). The Retro Storage Jar (£22), meanwhile, is by Sagaform and combines nostalgic design with practicality – perfect to take pride of place onto your, ahem, their kitchen countertop. Finally, grab these Ceramic Lidded Cups by Isak (£28 for the pair). Beautifully Scandinavian and pleasingly multi-purposed; use for kitchen storage and keepsakes or as drinking cups.

All items pictured above. Like design shops? Try our guide to the best design shops in the North. 

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