Shop Talk is written by OM senior editor Dayanti Karunaratne and Sarah Fischer, OM account executive and fashion maven.
Valentine’s Day is one of those occasions that, unless you are in some dramatic romance (or perhaps a 10-year-old who adores pink and red), can be a bit more trouble than it’s worth. For the singleton, it means (added) pressure to pair up; for those in a stable relationship, it means choosing a method of celebrating love that’s not too cheesy, too pricey, too obvious… you get the picture.
But here at SHOP TALK we think it’s always stylish to buy local, and we’re using this holiday to celebrate a new business that’s helping to spread this maxim.
Givopoly is the brainchild of Susan Richards and Craig Hung. They started Givopoly to provide a fast, easy way to shop local.
“I myself had thoughtful intentions but often missed the mark at execution,” Susan said in an email interview. “I had this idea to help make it easier for customers to connect with great local shops.”
Basically, it’s a website that brings together all sorts of small businesses in the Ottawa area. Organized by occasion, gift type, business, and price point, it brings shopping local together with shopping online … and delivers!
In short, it’s the perfect way to take the Hallmark out of Valentine’s Day. It’s also a fun way to explore the local business scene. With a growing list of vendors, there’s something for everyone at Givopoly, no matter your current relationship status.
The Gift: Linked Hearts bracelet by Arcana Dea Design. Hand-crafted sterling silver. 7.5″. $40.
Perfect for: That special someone pulling at your heartstrings … bonus points if they are into archery.
What it says: You are *almost* ready to say those big three words, and want that lady to wear her heart on her sleeve.
The Gift: Man Box package from Purple Urchin. Lumberjack liquid soap; tea tree and eucalyptus bar soap; wild ginger root bar soap; and an acne spot treatment. $34.99.
Perfect for: Your best mate who, with a little sprucing up, might just be something more…
What it says: Come a little closer, don’t be shy.
The Gift: Cupcakes from Vanilla Gourmet. Six per order. Vanilla and red velvet. $15.
Perfect for: The foodie — or the BFF who is alone on the 14th and will enjoy spending the night surrounded by sweetness.
What it says: Life is beautiful and tasty, even if Valentine’s Day sometimes sucks.