#InLoveWithLocal this Christmas
Step away from Amazon and read on for what some of the Somerset Muddy Award winners have on offer this Christmas
We’re all about championing indie businesses at Muddy so we’ve asked some of our Somerset Muddy Award winners for some Christmas gift ideas – all available either online or in store (or pub, salon, spa…) around Somerset.
Show that you’re as much #InLoveWithLocal as we are by, err… going shopping! Can’t argue with that.
Kobi & Teal, Frome, Best Interiors Store
Emma Lacey’s Everyday hand-thrown stoneware mugs, jugs and bowls. We love the way they look so soft – almost sensual – and fit perfectly into the hand. But then everything in this shop, which includes home wares, gifts, furniture, lighting and artworks from small design brands, individual makers and contemporary artists is super cool. Visit the shop on Catherine Street or buy online.
Trading Post Farm Shop, nr South Petherton, Best Farm Shop
Put together a fabulous Christmas gift hamper. This farm shop in Lopen near South Petherton is a true foodie heaven, with more artisan chocolate, sweet and savoury treats, cheeses, craft ciders, ales, gins and local wines (and more) than you can shake a candy cane at. You can pick up a Christmas tree while you’re there and very handily, Pip’s outstandingly good Railway Carriage Cafe (with double decker bus), winner of Best Cafe, is right next door.
Rocket & Bird, Taunton, Best Gift Shop
A stonking selection of gifts (surprise, surprise) made by owners Susie Thomas (Rocket & Co, unique and intricate artworks using old maps) and Jeanette Bird (Bird Modern Vintage bags, prints and more), and 20 other Somerset makers, designers and artists. With handmade chocolate, handbags, home wares, original art, candles, ceramics, greetings cards, prints, jewellery, you could probably buy a fair chunk of your prezzies here. They’re in The Courtyard, just off St James Street, opposite one of Taunton’s best restaurants, Augustus, and super slick Combers Inside Out Hairdressing, if you want to kill a few more birds.
The Candlelight Inn, Best Destination Pub
Not content with serving up over 50 gins made by other people, the owners of the Candlelight Inn, in Bishopswood near Chard, decided to make their own gin, named after their Irish setter Beau. Made with locally foraged botanicals, Beau Gin is luscious, well-balanced, sophisticated and full of charm (just like the dog). Call the pub to reserve a bottle or two and collect before Christmas. Stop for lunch if you’ve time, the food’s excellent.
Essence Hair & Beauty, Wedmore, Best Beauty Salon
Treat someone to one of their pampering or beauty treatments, or maybe a lash extensions and nails for yourself, for festive season readiness. Essence Hair & Beauty, isn’t one salon but two, sitting a few metres away from each other in cute little King Alfred Mews in Wedmore. Owned and run by sisters Becky Fowler and Sharon Lewis, from head to toe, they’ve got you – beautifully – covered.
The Olive Tree, at the Queensberry Hotel, Bath, Best Restaurant
A five-course gourmet meal in Bath’s only Michelin-star restaurant with an overnight stay and Full English breakfast in the swanky boutique Queensberry Hotel. This is fab – we’ve done it. Gift vouchers for the Gourmet Getaway for two cost £320 but there are lots of other gift voucher options ranging from a three-course lunch £34 (amazing value) to a weekend stay for two costing £560, with full vegetarian and vegan menus.
Elements Spa, Middlezoy, Best Day Spa
An Aromatherapy Associates travel gift set for someone on their way to sunnier climes. Lavender & Peppermint Bath and Shower Oil to cool overheated skin, a Breathe Roller Ball to ease the effects of stuffy environments, De-Stress Muscle Gel to soothe a travel-weary body, a Hydrosol Sheet Mask to plump tired skin and an Intensive Skin Treatment Oil to rejuvenate and protect. Vegan, nut and SLS-free. Buy from the spa, £33.
Spotty Herberts, Bath, Best Children’s Business
Stocking fillers, under-the-tree gifts and bigger for kids aged newborn –10+ at this small yet perfectly formed children’s shop on the charming cobbled Queen Street in Bath. How about a cuddy croc, a pack of pop-out cards and chocs, a giant sparkle cloud mobile, one of these cute sweetheart dolls, a handful of sandstorm marbles or a stripey backpack? Clothes, cuddly toys and blankets, too. Buy online or in store.
Brown & Forrest, Hambridge, Best Local Food & Drink Producer
A selection of smoked delicacies from the Somerset smokery, available individually or as part of a gift hamper. Online or in store. We’ve got two of their seasonal hampers, each worth £45, to give away.
Bibico, Bath, Best Women’s Store
A pair of Freda fingerless 100% mohair mittens, knitted in a Nordic pattern, £25. Snow’s got lots more gloves and mittens in her shop in Bartlett Street and online as well as a full range of easy to wear, fuss free and well made women’s clothing and accessories – and all of it ethically produced or Fair Trade.
Esme’s Escape, nr Crewkerne, Best Boutique Stay
A romantic weekend away in a luxury Shepherd’s Hut in Haselbury Plucknett, near Crewkerne. It’s very environmentally friendly, no plastic packaging, no air miles and a gift of time together for the recipients. Aawwh! Midweek £110/night; weekend £115/night.
Happy Christmas shopping!