Holiday shopping on Martha’s Vineyard is a far cry from the chaotic chore that it can often be off-Island. You won’t find yourself fighting for a parking spot at the mall here, because, well there’s no mall. There’s no big box store to bum-rush on Black Friday, and there’s definitely no stores opening at midnight shortly after you’ve cleared your Thanksgiving plates away. Like most things on Martha’s Vineyard, holiday shopping is a more slow paced, intimate experience. Often you’re purchasing gifts directly from the artist or designer that made them, or the shopkeeper who bought the items first hand. Holiday shopping on Martha’s Vineyard generally means going to any number of locally owned shops and boutiques, and browsing the various Christmas fairs and holiday markets that take place throughout the season. Holiday shopping on Martha’s Vineyard often involves making new friends, catching up with old ones, and finding locally made treasures that satisfy everyone on your list–naughty or nice.
Here’s a round up of some of the Island’s best holiday shopping options. At these locations you can shop with the confidence that you’re directly contributing to the local community and economy, which is a thoughtful gift in itself.
Featherstone Center for the Arts Annual Holiday Gift Show: Featherstone, the year round arts center in Oak Bluffs, presents their 19th Annual Holiday Gift Show. Featherstone invites you to celebrate the holiday season while supporting Island artists and Featherstone. This is the perfect holiday shopping destination with gifts for everyone (and yourself), including handmade creations including paintings, photography, pottery, crafts, jewelry, knitwear, clothing, purses, accessories, soaps, dog goods, ornaments, cards, calendars and stocking stuffers. Buy local and support local artists all while supporting Featherstone! Shopping by appointment only, open November 12th to December 16th, daily from 12-4pm, closed Thanksgiving Day. Located at Featherstone Center for the Arts, 30 Featherstone Lane, Oak Bluffs.
Vineyard Artisans Festival Thanksgiving and Holiday Fair: The Vineyard Artisans is a Vineyard summer tradition and the only weekly juried art show where the public can meet over 70 artisans and buy directly from them. The Artisans return each Thanksgiving weekend and December for their annual winter shows, where you’ll find demonstrations, weaving, fine furniture, pottery, stained glass, oil paintings, pastels, mixed media, sculpture, wampum jewelry, quilts, clothing, sea glass windows, handmade books and much more. It’s the last two Vineyard Artisans Festivals of the year, so stock up on your favorite Island goodies. November 26 and 27th and December 18, 10am to 4pm at the Historic Grange Hall in West Tisbury.
Christmas in Edgartown Shopping Specials: Christmas in Edgartown takes over Edgartown each December, with an array of shopping special from local retailers and holiday sales. The weekend kicks off on Thursday, December 9 and continues through Sunday December 12. In addition to individual store sales and specials be sure to catch the Annual Arts & Crafts Festival at Edgartown School that showcases the handmade gifts of over 30 Island artists.
Island Holiday Gift Sale at Heather Gardens in West Tisbury: Showcasing the best of our local artisans wares including wreaths, holiday plants, local sea salt, jams, jewelry, books, ceramics, wooden gifts, knitted items and more. Open daily November 19 through December 24, 10am to 5pm (closed Thanksgiving).
If you prefer to make a day of it going store to store here’s some of our most popular gift shops we’re your sure to find something for that special someone.
Rainy Day on Main Street in Vineyard Haven is one of the best curated shops on Martha’s Vineyard. It’s practically impossible to leave this store empty handed. The space isn’t big but the selection is. Rainy Day has everything from greeting cards to jewelry, accessories and home goods and everything in between, not to mention they always have a beautiful selection of holiday ornaments and decorative items for every occasion.
Martha's Vineyard Made offers an assortment of locally made, Island inspired gifts, and one seamless checkout experience, online and at their retail location at 29 Main Street in Vineyard Haven. Choose from specially curated sets and gift boxes or individual products from local makers and creators including Bluewave Body Company, Martha's Vineyard Sea Salt, Flat Point Farm, Tending Joy, and more.
Alley’s General Store in West Tisbury is the island’s oldest retail business on Martha’s Vineyard. When it opened in 1858, it provided householders and local farmers and fishermen with basic staples and as a retail outlet for their goods. Today, Alley’s is a gathering spot for locals and visitors alike. You’ll always find friends gathered on the front porch enjoying coffee or locals inside picking up the mail. Alley’s boasts an eclectic assortment of just about anything and everything, from toys to housewares and hardware. No matter what time of year a stop at Alley’s is always a good idea.
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