16 made-in-Calgary gifts to add to your holiday shopping list

Nov 30 2021, 5:33 pm

If there’s one thing we’ve learned from the pandemic, it’s just how important it is to support local.

Calgary is home to some incredible artisans, made-in-Canada apparel and homeware companies, coffee shops, restaurants, breweries, distilleries, and other unique businesses.

When you purchase a product or service from a small business or local maker, you’re not only helping to support the person behind it, but our Calgary economy as a whole.

And since you’re likely going to be shopping for gifts this season anyway, why not try to pick up most of your presents from a Calgary-based business or artist?

We’ve put together a guide of some of our favourite local products this holiday season to help you find the perfect gifts for all your friends, family, coworkers, and anyone else in your life who may be deserving of a little something.

My Mommy Drinks Wine’s Mama’s Blanc and Mama’s Noir

Calgary shopping

Courtesy of My Mommy Drinks Wine

My Mommy Drinks Wine (MMDW) is a Calgary-based curated wine service. Creator Victoria Harris has taken her passion for wine to the next level by launching Calgary’s first female-owned and operated wine label, produced in Calgary’s only urban winery, City & Country.

Offering two varieties to start (Mama’s Blanc and Mama’s Noir), grapes for MMDW’s wines come from various growers in British Columbia. Mama’s Blanc retails at $21.99, while the Pinot Noir goes for $23.99 – or try both for $44 with the MMDW tasting pack! If you want to take your love of the beverage even further, try a tasting box, or sign up for a subscription. Monthly subscriptions start at $89, and vinos can choose from Mixed, All Red, Better Be Pinot, or Poppin’ Bubbles boxes.

My Mommy Drinks Wine red and white can be found in stores including 4th Street Liquor and Wine, Skyway Wine & Liquor, and Cloud 9 Specialty Liquor, as well as online at mmdwwines.com. 

Borrowed Time: Calgary 1976 – 2019 photography book by George Webber

Calgary shopping

Borrowed Time (rmbooks.com)

Renowned documentary photographer George Webber’s latest collection, Borrowed Time: Calgary 1976 – 2019, features photography and micro-essays highlighting the growth and evolution of Calgary in all its juxtapositions and complexities.

Webber lives in Calgary, and his images have been featured in American Photo, Canadian Geographic, Lenswork Quarterly, Photolife, The New York Times, and Swerve magazine. The 208-page book displays images of one of Canada’s most interesting, and complicated, cities from 1976 to 2019, and includes a forward by award-winning Canadian travel writer and novelist Will Ferguson.

Borrowed Time ($50) can be found online through Rocky Mountain Books.

Graze boxes

Calgary shopping

Courtesy of The Graze Company

One for the food lovers! The Graze Company creates curated selections of goodies that are as beautiful as they are delicious, and their boxes are perfect to bring as a hostess gift to all your holiday parties, or to drop off as a surprise for a friend this season.

These are not your average charcuterie boards, and the company offers a wide array of drool-worthy options, including boxes, boards, tables, and even a picnic package. Step it up a notch with the Graze Platinum Menu, or create your own with a DIY Kit.

Shop Graze’s complete selection online, including their Holiday Collection, featuring the Limited Edition Graze Holiday Box ($230), which contains a 375ml bottle of Domaine Bousquet organic Malbec wine, the Limited Edition Graze Holiday Dessert Box ($45+), the Graze Holiday DIY Wreath Kit ($150+), and the Holiday Graze Box ($42+).

XO’s Holiday Body Washes and Bath Soaks

Calgary shopping

Courtesy of XO

XO Treatment Room is “results oriented and lifestyle minded,” and their take-home products help to create a spa-inspired atmosphere with real results. Founded by Calgarian Facialist Annie Graham, XO FACEcare is dedicated to creating hyper effective skin care. All products are intensely focused on the task at hand – whether that be hydrating, calming or strengthening.

XO’s 200-millilitre Moisturizing Holiday Body Washes ($36) come in Gingerbread, Christmas Sage, and XO Cherry, and you’ll find 200-gram Bath Soaks ($36) in Spiced Apple with softening sea salt, Cinnamon, and XO Oak.

Shop the collection online at XO Treatment Room.

Burwood Distillery’s Bee Whisperer whisky

Calgary shopping


Calgary’s Burwood Distillery has released a new novel whisky just in time for the holidays. The Bee Whisperer is a blend of Burwood’s single malt barley and raw farm-fresh honey, and pays homage to the barley farmer and the beekeeper, two of the distillery’s most
treasured resources.

With a limited edition release of 2,500 bottles, the Bee Whisperer captures the continued dedication and passion of the Burwood co-owners and is a perfect addition to the whisky connoisseur’s bar cart. The whisky has fruity, single malt flavours in the forefront, but the truly discerning sipper will find notes of wildflowers, honeysuckle, and a warming caramel character to finish.

The Bee Whisperer is now available in select stores, including Willow Park Wines, and on Burwood’s website for $71.99.

C of Dead’s nostalgic apparel

Calgary shopping

Courtesy of C of Dead

Everyone has a favourite old sports team, local business, or venue that’s no longer around today. Times change and all good things must come to an end, so we totally understand when some of the classics have to go. But what if you still want to rep your local favourite from days past?

YYC’s own C of Dead Clothing Co. brings a solution to Calgarians with an apparel line that offers merch from long-dead sports franchises such as the Calgary Cannons, Stampede Wrestling, Calgary Radz, and Calgary 88s. Other local icons that have been represented include the Corral arena, Cecil Hotel, AM106 radio station, Lloyd’s Recreation roller rink, and recent pandemic casualty Ranchman’s Dancehall. The brand offers t-shirts, crewnecks, hats, and long sleeved shirts, with prices starting at $19.99.

Maybe there’s someone on your gifting list who has a favourite team or venue that’s no longer around, or perhaps you want to impress a Gen Z-er with a cool, retro present, but in either case, there’s no better way to help them rep YYC than with apparel from C of Dead.

True Buch’s Buy Local Holiday Gift Bags

Calgary shopping


Back by popular demand, these Buy Local Holiday Gift Bags ($110) come with plenty of Calgary goodies, including a candle from Milk Jar Candle Co., Cinnamon Spiced Honey from Drizzle Honey, Calgary Tower and Saddledome socks from Friday Sock Co., a 2-litre growler of Spiced Plum Kombucha from True Buch, and much more.

The Buy Local Holiday Gift Bags contains over $250 worth of product, so you’re actually saving money — plus, you can feel good about your purchase knowing that all profits from the sale of the gift bags go directly to Inn From the Cold Calgary (last year’s bags raised over $2,300!)

There’s a limited number of bags, so act quickly to get your hands on these local treasures via True Buch’s website, and share them with the biggest supporter of Calgary businesses in your life.

Cozy shirts from Rocky Mountain Flannel


From socks and scarves to pajamas and more, Alberta-founded Rocky Mountain Flannel offers beautifully designed apparel for women and men, but the star of the show is their classic flannel button-downs. 

Men’s shirts start at $89, or you can opt for an even cozier, sherpa-lined flannel ($124). Women’s flannels go for $79 and up, and you can also pick out robes, scarves, toques, and more, covering everyone on your list this holiday season.

Shop Rocky Mountain Flannel online, on Bear Street in Banff, and at the Fairmont Banff Springs, Fair Chateau Lake Louise, and Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge hotels.

Loose leaf tea from Jolene’s Tea House


You’re sure to find something for everyone at Jolene’s Tea House, which offers more than 60 hand-blended flavourful organic teas. The locally owned and operated shop has been blending teas in Banff National Park since 2005, and is home to everything from classic favourites to heath-inspired herbal blends to exclusive shade-grown, hand-picked Japanese teas.

Recently, Jolene’s has stocked adorable, tea house-shaped boxes of tea ($14.95), with flavours including Creamy Earl Grey, Golden Chamomile, and Banff Breakfast. You can also shop loose leaf tea, tea bags, tea accessories, and other gifts this season.

Find Jolene’s teas online, or at the tea house-inspired log cabin on Bear street in Banff.

Local art from Carter-Ryan Gallery


The Carter-Ryan Gallery is home to Indigenous Visual Artist, Jason Carter, and Creative Director and Producer, Bridget Ryan. For the art lover in your life, you’ll find stunning original works, including paintings, sculptures, and Christmas ornaments, along with prints.

Inspired by landscapes across the province, the art you’ll see at Carter-Ryan Gallery includes grain elevators, lakes and mountains, and Alberta wildlife.

Browse the gallery’s available pieces online, or in-person at the Canmore and Banff locations.

Rocky Mountain Soap Co.’s Holiday Collection


Aside from Rocky Mountain Soap Co.’s year-round, all-natural skin care line, the company has launched a collection of holiday gift sets and goodies. Offerings include bath bomb trios ($21), Vanilla Candy Cane bubble bath ($15), Palo Santo & Cedar bath bombs ($6.95), Holiday Bar Soap Sets ($28), Juniper Mint Everything Wash ($15), and much, much more.

Pick up Rocky Mountain Soap Co.’s products at their stores and stockists across Calgary, and online at rockymountainsoap.com.

Home décor from Made Local Marketplace

Vintage Pleated Pillow – Champagne from Amilley & Hyde (madelocalmarketplaceyy.com)

With two locations in Calgary, Made Local Marketplace is the perfect spot to pick up a truly YYC-crafted gift. The shop offers high quality local gifts, from home dĂ©cor and jewelry to men’s grooming supplies and loungewear, and you’ll be sure to pick up a unique gift not found anywhere else.

Home dĂ©cor items range from baskets and bowls to vintage pleated pillows, doormats with funny slogans to macrame plant hangers, and sparkly suncatchers to neighbourhood maps. No matter how your loved ones dress up their homes, you’ll find something at Made Local that will fit their style.

Check out Made Local Marketplace’s vast collection at Westman Village in Mahogany and in Signal Hill.

Local Laundry’s Bamboo Giving Socks


Give your friends and family the gift of comfortable feet this Christmas while making sure someone in need gets a new pair of socks as well.

Local Laundry’s Bamboo Giving Socks ($20) are rayon, which is made from bamboo, and they’re classic, durable, and perfect for athletics, as they’re breathable and naturally odour resistant. Plus, for every pair of socks they sell, Local Laundry will donate one pair to someone in need.

Socks reach mid-calf height and feature a red maple leaf, paying homage to the fact that it was made right here in Canada. Find the giving socks and the rest of Local Laundry’s apparel collection online and at numerous stockists across Calgary.

“Darling Duo” hair pins from Cinder & Sage


Hair accessories are having a major moment right now, and Calgary-based Cinder & Sage offers some adorable options.

The “Darling Duo” hair pins ($25) come in three different patterns and two different shapes, so you can mix and match based on how you feel that day. For the long-haired folks in your life, you can shop Cinder & Sage’s “Blue Bird Day” small hair comb, “Floating Feather” hair comb, “Sunday” hair clips, patterned “Josephine” hair elastics, and more.

If hair bling isn’t what you’re looking for, C&S also offers plenty of necklace, earring, ring, and keychain options, along with other pretty accessories, on their website, and at their 4th Street store in Calgary.

Milk Jar Candle Co.’s Hygge soy coconut candle


Who doesn’t want some extra-cozy vibes in their home, especially around the holidays? Milk Jar Candle Co.’s Hygge candle ($27) is sure to make anyone feel a little more content with its vanilla, tobacco, and cedar scent.

Milk Jar makes hand-poured coconut soy candles with natural wooden wicks right here in Calgary, and $1 from every sale is donated to a non-profit supporting children in Alberta.

Add an adorable Milk Jar branded matchbox to your purchase for $1, or a seasonal Holly candle to bring even more flickering joy in your loved ones’ homes this year. Find Milk Jar candles online and at stockists across Calgary.

A 2022 planner from Recess Shop


After the last couple of years, 2022 is going to be everyone’s time to shine, right? Pick up a cute and functional planner for the most organized (or most “needs to get organized”) person on your shopping list to help them make it the best year ever.

Planners are available from just under $20 (and up) at Recess, along with all the other stationary and office supplies anyone could ever need to get their life on track, plus art supplies and more.

Visit Recess Shop in Inglewood, or browse the collection from the comfort of your own couch via their website.

Elle McLeanElle McLean

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