In the lead up to Christmas, we’ve put together a handy buy-local gift guide with some of the city’s best retail emporiums, artisan producers and other ideas to make this a conscious consumer Christmas.
Pampering & Wellbeing
Ora Wellbeing produces a divine range of holistic skincare which not only feels and smells amazing, but truly transforms your skin from meh to magic. Created in small batches by local facialist, energy healer and botanical alchemist, Heidi Timms, this extraordinary range is infused with activated crystals, organic & natural botanicals, flower essences and native New Zealand extract. Festive gift recommendation: The Illuminating Set
MEA is a natural perfume oil crafted in Dunedin with sustainably hand-harvested Taramea. It is a sacred treasure species which is blended with the highest quality fragrance ingredients to bring you a collection of three distinct perfumes. Together they weave a thread in the story of an innovative and resourceful people – Ngāi Tahu.
The perfect gift to ward off the effects of too much festive celebration, Wild Dispensary’s fantastic Firecider and Switchel gift packs cider-vinegar based tonics make a healthy and delicious present that have the added bonus of looking great in the pantry.
Hidden away in upper St Andrew Street Alaina Natural Beauty is a little gem of a store which sells all manner of natural lotions, potions and make-up from New Zealand and international brands. Discover a new favourite among the delicious-smelling shelves of products. If you’re also in the market for a party frock for your little one, you’ll find that here too.
The lovely handmade beeswax product range from Little Roo includes food wraps in funky designs and candles that smell divine. A excellent gift for environmentally conscious friends and family and super-cute to match.
Join the revolution against waste and nab yourself or a friend a snazzy keep-cup from one of Dunedin’s many cafes or retail stockists. Even better, look out for the Dunedin branded version from IdealCup for extra kudos.
Much more than an organic health store, Taste Nature carries an extensive range of eco-conscious goods that make great gifts. Check out their range while stocking up on freshly baked organic artisan bread and other tasty and healthy treats.
If you’d rather pay it forward this year, why not gift a donation to one of Dunedin’s many worthy wildlife and conservation charities who work hard to preserve the precious flora and fauna that share our environment. See a list of conservation charities.
Give the gift of greenery and buy native tree seedlings or vouchers from a local nursery, not only do you enhance your landscaping but off-set carbon at the same time – win-win.
Get on board with the e-bike revolution. If doing your bit for the environment wasn’t enough motivation, these bikes get your speedily from a to b without much peddle power at all. There are a number of local stockists, so why not make it a New Year resolution.
Bling & Things
Dunedin is known for its artisan jewellers, so you won’t have to look far to find a shiny piece of bling to brighten up someone’s day. For exquisite locally crafted jewellery look for Debra Fallowfield, Lure, Idour, Henderson Jewellery, Rata, Mint & Blush and Melrose Paper Designs.
Jewellery can also be found at Guild a trove of unique Dunedin designed wares. In the same vicinity, you can also shop for lovely things at Vull Design, DoodleFish, Design Withdrawals and Gone Potty or head online and check out the exceptionally cool Crown and Feathers. For exclusive cast glass objects see local artist Mike Crawford's wares.
For more festive gift inspo, pop up to Roslyn village for a look in at Blackbird or to Fallow & Fox in Mornington where beautiful wares can be found amongst the blooms. Don’t miss the George Street and St Clair branches of Moi and their selection of gorgeous wares.
It goes without saying that the Otago Farmers Market should be an essential stop on any gourmand’s tour of the city, but the excellent food doesn’t end there. Stock up on festive feast supplies at Good Food Co., Blacks Rd Grocer, Marbecks Food Store, Deep Creek Deli.
Christmas treats come in the form of Ocho Chocolate, Tart Tin goodies, Williams and Co cakes, Bay Road peanut butter and Evansdale Cheese and Blueskin Bay Honey, but if you’re after something to toast the occasion, then Urbn Vino and Wine Freedom have you covered.
Books & Art
As a UNESCO City of Literature with a large university, books are a vital part of Dunedin’s identity, so it’s no surprise that book emporiums of all kinds can be found here. From the shiny new tomes of the University Book Shop to the well-loved pages and obscure titles within The Hard to Find Bookshop or Dead Souls Bookshop, there is no shortage of places to satisfy bibliophiles.
Somewhere between books and art is Dutybound Bookbinding, head to this emporium of paper delights in the Warehouse Precinct you’ll find gorgeous handmade journals, notebooks, pencils and hot foil greeting cards, truly unique and useful gifts.
Something of an artist’s hub, it’s easy to find a new piece for your art collection when you can buy direct from the maker, check out Sam Sharpe’s quirky pieces, the colourful prints from Dust and Dandelions and Mixie, the stunning photography of Derek Morrison or the maritime-themed markings of The Flying Whale. For a wide range of works and design pieces from Dunedin artists browse the new Artq Collective website.
Alternatively pop in to one of the many privately-run galleries in the city, a great way to spend a morning in between cafes and attractions. Gallery De Novo, The Artists Room, Quadrant Gallery, Moray Gallery or Milford Gallery, Pea Sea Art or Koru Gallery will reward you with a wide spectrum of visual arts from contemporary local and New Zealand artists.
Vintage & Antiques
For aficionados of retro clothing, curios and antiques, Dunedin has numerous vintage and second-hand goods stores, tucked away in all corners of the city, just awaiting discovery. Within the beautifully styled stores of Two Squirrels Vintage Emporium, Vintage Honey’s, Finders Keepers and Shop on Carroll, are an astounding array of hard to find vintage threads and accessories.
Dunedin’s colourful heritage comes to the fore in the numerous antique and curio stores where you can snap up a piece of history for a song at Taste Merchants, Restore and Arkwright Traders, or go high-end at Sue Todd Antiques.
If a one-stop-shopping experience is more your style, then Dunedin’s three interconnected shopping malls – Wall Street Mall, Golden Centre and Meridian Mall – house a good selection of national retailers and chain stores.