Not sure where to go shopping for the kids this holiday season? It may be tempting to order all their gifts, books and toys from big box stores or giant online shops, but if you shop at the local businesses in the Ottawa area, you’ll be supporting your neighbours and community members who contribute to our city. Plus, you are likely to find a special, unique and kid-loving gift that they’ll be thrilled to receive. We’ve gathered a few local locations we think you’ll love.
Tip: Many of these stores will be hosting their own local Black Friday deals and holiday sales!
With locations at the Rideau Centre, on Bank Street and in Westboro, Mrs. Tiggy Winkles is filled with games for the entire family, doll accessories and childhood favourites like Playmobil and LEGO. It’s been open since 1977, so they know a thing or toy about finding the best toys for Ottawa kids. We also love the addition of their Lost Marbles store, featuring funny and trendy gifts for those who are young at heart (or for the teens in your life!)
You can visit Tag Along Toys on Bank Street or in Kanata; both locations are stocked with some of our favourite crafts and science products that will encourage your artsy children and STEM-loving children to get even more curious and creative. If you aren’t sure what gift to get, give the staff the ages of the kids you are buying for and they’ll find you the perfect item.
Even though you can shop at Hintonburg Kids (formerly The Extraordinary Baby Shoppe) online (where you’ll find long-lasting and special gifts) you’ll want to make a trip into the store for the personalized service their staff offers. They’ll know which gifts are the hottest toys, or what books to tuck into the stocking this year. There are sensory toys, baby toys, wooden toys and items to encourage pretend play.
While you know Boomerang Kids as a go-to shop for consignment items (both to find some new-to-you items and to drop off your own children’s clothing and toys), did you also know about their selection of brand new toys, puzzles and stocking stuffers that will make everyone happy? With a variety of locations across the city, you won’t have to go far to start (and even finish) your shopping.
For Made in Canada gifts that you’ll be proud to give to the kids in your life, you’ll definitely want to check out MakerHouse Co. Located in Hintonburg, this shop curates some of the most original items you’ll find this holiday season. Their philosophy is all about valuing items, supporting your neighbours and sustainable practices. We think the wooden cars, blocks, and puppets made from reclaimed wool are just a few of the items you’ll fall in love with.
Ok, maybe we are cheating a little bit here because there isn’t just one store to mention (or for many, an actual brick and mortar location) but we can’t help but suggest a local craft or maker show. There are many in the Ottawa area (we’ve recently shared a list with you) and likely even more at your local community centre, school or church coming up. This is where you’ll be sure to find one-of-a-kind presents the kids, and you will love.