As we countdown to the official holiday season, I’ve been saying over and over that it’s important to support our local businesses! Looking for gifts? Support local. Looking for food? Support local. Almost everything on your list can be found locally! And believe it or not this local spirit applies to cider! Do you like Strongbow? We have a local supplier that you can support for your cider needs. Enter, The Hard Way Cider Co, located in Bath (don’t worry, they deliver!). It’s locally owned, artisanal, bone dry, hard cider that is gluten-free. Continue reading
After I shared the original Holiday Shopping Guide, I did a call out in my Instagram stories to ask which local shops I missed. Our community is so passionate about supporting small business, the list grew and grew! After a very scientific (cough, an instagram poll, cough ) asking if I should turn the community-curated list on Instagram into an official post, the response was yes. So, here it is. This list is a collection of community suggestions to continue shopping local. I discovered many new gems! Thank you to everyone who sent along their favourite spots. I can keep updating once a week with new shops if you have any recommendations. Share them in the comments. Continue reading
Access to equity or capital is one of the biggest obstacles for Black and Indigenous owned business. Black, Indigenous and People of Colour are often overlooked due to a history of systemic racism. Many are left needing to use personal bank loans and this issue has been spotlighted during the challenges of COVID-19. It means that many small businesses do not qualify for the federal emergency funding from the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA). According to a recent article in The Star, “While the government expanded CEBA eligibility to include businesses with a payroll between $20,000 and $1.5 million (the initial range was $50,000 to $1 million), for the many Black-owned businesses that hire on a contractual basis or are not large enough, this funding is inaccessible.” Continue reading
I’ve said it before and I will say it again, Kingston is filled with talented artists and makers. And there is no better time of year to celebrate them then right now. It can be really easy to just hit up Amazon Prime and have the gifts delivered to our doorstep but there is also an opportunity to engage with our local entrepreneurs. As you finish up shopping for your loved ones, consider supporting someone from our community. You can find some of the vendors I mention at the Kingston Holiday Market on weekends and many of them sell online as well! Continue reading
Not going to lie, I’ve left all of my holiday shopping to the last minute. Have not bought one gift. But living in Kingston, we are surrounded by the best locally owned shops in the cutest downtown and I know it won’t take long for me to find what I need and treat myself to a nice lunch along the way. If you follow my blog, you probably already know, but I want to give you five reasons why I shop local – specifically downtown Kingston.
1. Good Vibes: Have you walked through Springer Market Square lately? It’s like walking through a holiday episode of the Gilmore Girls. Couples and family’s skating on the glistening ice framed by the 11 foot Christmas tree and the beautiful City Hall building. The scenic view gets me in the holiday spirit every time.
Update: This location is no longer in operation. When I was initially invited to visit Bluboho I was excited to see the beautiful new space and stunning pieces of jewellery. What I didn’t anticipate was the experience I had when I stepped through their doors.
Yes, the space IS absolutely stunning. A century building on Bloomfield’s Main Street, with its intricate details beautifully preserved and light airy decor to complement. The space holds lovely one-of-kind pieces in gold, rose gold and silver accented with unique stones but it also holds a warmth that I can’t do justice through a few filtered Instagram images. Continue reading
If you’ve found yourself at the corner of Princess and King street in the past 20 years or so, you’ve likely stopped in to clothing stores Fancy That or Roundstone. These shops are a staple of Kingston’s downtown and where you’ll find great deals on June 16 as downtown Kingston celebrates DKShopfest. DKShopfest is a day dedicated to celebrating and supporting our locally owned shops while scoring great deals. I wanted to learn a little more about Fancy That owner, Maria Cronk. She was kind enough to answer a few questions via email. Read below to learn how Fancy That started and what Maria loves most about being a Kingston shop owner.
Keep up with Kingston: Please share how Fancy That started? How many years have you been open?
Maria Cronk: Fancy That Group started in 1974 by Inger Sparring (my mother) in Brockville, ON. We started as one small store in Brockville, ON and grew over the years. At one point we had nine stores across Eastern Ontario! Now, we have two stores in downtown Kingston (Fancy That & the Roundstone) and one store in Brockville (Limestone & Ivy). IN 1979, my brother, Dan, joined in the business, he runs our store in Brockville, and I joined in 1985 to run the Kingston stores.
We came to downtown Kingston in May 1985 with Fancy That. Continue reading
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it many more times: I love Bella Bistro and the Bella Market. Their attention to detail is impeccable, they always source locally and as a result their food quality is s top notch. I wrote about The Bella Market when they first opened and now that they’ve been open a few months, I want to share with you how much I love their pre-made meal options. As someone who loves to cook and doesn’t love buying processed frozen meals from the grocery store, their pre-made meals are perfect when I’ve had a busy week. When I visit Bella, the staff are always happy to share their culinary expertise and I love how excited they get about their food! I appreciate how they can always share a personal experience and insight on anything I am considering picking up. Continue reading
I’ve made a list for a little downtown shopping gift inspiration! A place to shop for each special person in your life. Continue reading
The countdown to Christmas is officially on and this is the perfect time to share all of the goodness that Kingston’s makers have to offer. Thanks to a few very festive markets
— you can easily support local and treat loved ones this season. Scroll down to see where you can find your locally sourced Christmas gifts.
Kingston Holiday Market – 274 Princess Street – Saturday, November 18th (Open for 6 weekends)
From locally made chocolate and jewelry to bath products, furniture and more! Some of my favourite Kingston makers will be here!
Keep up on Instagram: @kingstonholidaymarket