1. The Vermont Country Store: Since 1945 the Vermont Country store has been locally owned and operated by the Orton family. With physical locations in Weston and Rockingham, Vermont, as well as a robust online business, you can find many New England, local, and made in the USA treasures for the holidays.
There you can prepare for Christmas morning by purchasing some flannel footy pajamas and even buying some Ovaltine to leave out for Santa in your cherry printed ThermoServ tumblers.
2. ...Of the Month Club: No we're not talking fruitcakes here, but nothing is more retro than an "of the month club" gift. It's the gift that keeps on giving far after the rest have been returned and it gives the recipient something to look forward to and thank you for far after late December.
One of our local favorites is Vermont's own Lake Champlain Chocolates, Chocolate of the month club. Available at a variety of price points for different monthly durations this is a surefire hit for the chocolate afficienado in your life. $90 and up.
The Vermont Brownie Company also offers a delicious of the month club gift option. If you haven't tasted their wares you are missing out! $84 and up.
3. Vermont Teddy Bear Company: Instead of getting the little ones in your life yet another plastic future addition to the landfill, why not get them something made in Vermont that is both cuddly and teaches them from an early age the finer points of style.
While they have different names under the theme and occupation sections of the site, we like to refer to these as rockabilly bear, cocktail party host bear, and mod tailored suit bear. $80.
4. One Hip Sticker Chic: Sticking with the kid-gift theme, as we know that once you hit a certain age you can often find yourself in the "let's not exchange gifts, you can just buy gifts for the kids" predicament, we'd like to recommend one Quechee, Vermont-based Etsy seller. OneHipStickerChic's mod-inspired wall-sized decals can save your neice or nephew from parent-imposed Disney decorations or Pixar Plastic knick-knacks.
In addition to getting their imagination going with some mod-monkeys, you can also teach them the importance of monogramming. $25 and up.
5. Custom shirts and suits by Michael Kehoe Ltd. Go retro with how you shop and consider a custom garment. We've written on this blog before about Michael Kehoe Ltd., a menswear shop right here in Vermont. Jen bought Eric a gift certificate for custom made to measure dress shirts last year and he absolutely loves them. And yes, they can seem a little pricey - depending on the line and fabric you choose, the price ranges from about $110 to $250 per shirt, with a minimum order of two shirts. But, it's about value. With the ability to replace the cuffs or collars for years to come should they need it you will have a shirt that has a lifespan far longer than that of any you can purchase off the rack. Michael Kehoe Ltd. is a locally owned business, and many of their custom made garments are made in the USA (though - full disclosure - some are made by our neighbors to the north in Canada).
6. Wine. Watch an episode of Mad Men and you'd be hard pressed to find a scene that doesn't contain the best supporting actor "Alcohol." Right here in Vermont some very good wines are being made. Shelburne Vineyards in Shelburne, Vermont has a great selection, offers fun, inexpensive wine tastings, and is locally owned and operated. They do not sell direct over the Web, but many local markets and wine shops carry their wines. $14 - $45.
7. A Ski Trip: Nothing says retro family fun like a weekend of skiing. Help support the Vermont economy still hurting from Irene by taking a ski trip to one of the many old school Vermont mountains!
8. Midcentury modern iPad Sleeve - Handmade via Etsy. (You can find Kindle cases too!). $15 - $20.
- Handmade in the USA - vintage style women's hats by Agneta Persson
- Hot towel shave at a traditional barber shop (this one's in Boston, but barber shops that still do this can be found almost anywhere).
- Gift certificate at your favorite locally-owned restaurant
- A cool vintage or antique piece for your home from a local antique shop
- A cooking class by an independent chef (our friend Alejandra is a wonderful chef and does really fun, kitschy classes like her Retro Cooking: 1960s Dinner Party Class - hurry and sign up - it's November 19 in NYC!)
- Wine or cheese tasting class
- Handmade soaps and other bath and body products for men and women by Etsy seller Little Batch. We've bought and been extremely pleased with her bar soaps and facial toner. She adds new scents all the time and these items make great gifts. All products are cruelty-free and not animal tested, made with sustainably harvested ingredients and packed in reusable and recycled and/or recyclable packaging.
- A pair of vintage, made in the USA, eyeglass frames from jenericVintage.com! (Sorry, we couldn't help ourselves)
Any other vintage or retro inspired gift ideas? Leave 'em in the comments!