Your Guide to Local Handmade Gifts for Valentine’s Day

Hearts? Flowers? Champagne? Chocolates? Not this year. This year make it about self-care. Give the gift that will linger and delight in your home: Long sips of savory tea, warm showers with silky soap, or mood lighting via scented candles. Treat yourself or your loved ones to some carefully crafted local handmade gifts from woman-owned businesses. You won’t regret it.

Herban Tea Cafe

Photo: @herbanteacafe on Instagram

Loose leaf is not for the rushed and frazzled. Give the gift of curated concoctions that will leave your beloved (or you) feeling fulfilled and calm. Board-certified lab scientist Anna Alexander hand blends these–dare I say, magical?–teas that fill the belly while optimizing health. OTR Berry and Roasted Almond Biscotti will transcend you by the cup.  Her “Bourgeoise Sugar Cubes” will also take tea time to another level of elegance. They are fiercely fought over in my house and we keep tabs on their consumption so each connoisseur is equally rewarded their prize of sweet cubes.

The Oakley Soap Co.

Photo: @theoakleysoapco on Instagram

The motto for the Oakley Soap Co. is “unpretentious soap for unpretentious people”, and I agree. Laura Pipitone runs her “hobby-turned-mom-run-business” with a dose of hilarious attitude, like kindly asking that you not think of her while naked as you partake in her plethora of soaps. From zesty to robust, each hand-crafted vegan bar will leave you wondering how you dared to use generic soap in the past. Her specialties include sugar scrubs, shower steamers, body butter and newly added shampoo bars. Her Lovely Lemon Lavender Sugar Scrub is a must-have and the Kokomo soap will whisk you to the tropics on a snowy Midwest day.

Poured With Grace Candles

Photo: @pouredwithgracecandles on Instagram

Little did I realize that candles were gateways to buying more candles, but here we are. Emily Roberts is my local candle dealer, and I will tell anyone who’ll listen. Her signature scent is Orchid & Sea Salt which was my first experience with her hand poured soy wax treasures. She continues to roll out seasonal gems and my winter favorite was Holiday Spruce which I would light anytime I was in the kitchen. I eagerly await her Valentine’s drop which will surely bring new favorites. She also offers her scents in squeezable wax for your desired wax warmer. Set the mood, light a candle.

All in all, you will be delighted with these local handmade gifts from lovely small businesses. Wishing you a gentle Valentine’s Day. 

Looking for more gift ideas for your special someone? Here’s a list of fun and creative date ideas.