Give back with gifts that are made and sold in Metro Detroit

Melody Baetens
The Detroit News

Shopping and buying gifts from local makers, designers and business owners can take the sting out of rampant consumerism. 

Feel good about not only buying someone a gift that's unique and not mass-marketed, but also by supporting local retailers and makers. Here are some ideas for gift-able products made and sold in Metro Detroit: 

Royal Oak's Dirty Girl Farm makes a line of organic and vegan self-care products.


Dirty Girl Farm: This Royal Oak-based skin care company uses vegan and organic ingredients that are free of toxins, chemicals and gluten. The 20-year-old company has more than 400 products. Consider the charcoal cleansing collection, or other holistic and on-trend approaches like lavender, turmeric, coffee and hemp. (810) 618-6466 or 

DāO Detroit: This locally-based hair care company says its products are for all types of hair, regardless of who it belongs to. The all-natural shampoo, conditioners and hair moisturizers, are sold separately or as kits. A portion of profits are donated to their #DefyAllOdds campaign to encourage individuality and embrace uniqueness. Order online at 

Lucky Detroit: Looking for the ultimate in locally-sourced stocking stuffers? Above Detroit Barbers Barbershop in Corktown is a new cafe, Lucky Detroit. This holiday season they're selling soap made from discarded coffee grounds. The soaps — mocha, latte and pour-over — are made with coffee, coffee grounds, coconut oil and shea butter and are $7 each. The barber shops (there's one in Ferndale, too) also sell a whole line of men's grooming products. 2000 Michigan, Detroit. (313) 284-4100.


Pingree Detroit: If buying locally didn't make you feel warm and fuzzy as it is, these goods are also made by veterans. Named after a late 19th century Mayor of Detroit Hazen S. Pingree, this company makes shoes, wallets and bags. 6438 Woodward, Detroit. (313) 757-0291 or

Detroit is the New Black: This Motown-centric clothing brand sells cute and chic tops for women, men and kids, plus dresses, hats, bags and other gifts for the Detroit-lover here or out-of-state. 1426 Woodward, Detroit. (313) 818-3498 or

Ackroyd's Scottish Bakery in Redford sells a tea gift set.

Edible gifts

Ackroyd's Tea Gift Set: For the lass or lad who loves a good tea break, Ackroyd's Scottish Bakery in Redford has a ton of imported goods from across the pond, including an Afternoon Tea Starter Kit with a dozen scones, locally-made jam, tea and clotted cream ($35). 25566 5 Mile, Redford. (313) 532-1181 or

2 Dogs Hot Sauce: For the foodie in your life that likes unique products, consider this newer local hot sauce maker. 2 Dogs Hot Sauce makes habanero sauces in Michigan cherry and black garlic varieties. This may be the only local hot sauce available at specialty stores (Plum Market, Holiday Market) and also record stores (Found Sound, Flipside Records). Order online, too, at

Valentine Vodka mule set: This growing Ferndale booze company has a load of gifts at their tasting room, including a handsome Moscow mule cocktail set with two copper mugs, a bottle of Valentine vodka and some ginger beer to mix with it. 161 Vester, Ferndale. (248) 629-9951.


"Bird Box" by Josh Malerman: If you haven't heard the name "Bird Box" yet, it's likely that by Christmas you will. Sandra Bullock stars in a movie based on Ferndale author Josh Malerman's debut novel of the same name. The book was released in 2014 and the film hits Netflix on Dec. 21. 

"5000 Ways You Know You're From Detroit" by Chris Edwards & Elaine Weeks: A look back at the city's recent history through the lens of the Baby Boomers, this book covers the Motor City's past from 1939-1980.  

"Joni on Joni" by Susan Whitall: Edited by Metro Detroit-based author and former Detroit News music columnist Whitall, this book tells Joni Mitchell's story in her own words, including a rare look at the time she spent in Detroit. 

"Joni On Joni: Interviews and Encounters with Joni Mitchell" by Susan Whitall.

Other stuff

Painted Lady Trashions: If you're looking for a unique gift for the unique person in your life, browse the oddities at this popular boutique inside Ferndale's Rust Belt Market (which is teeming with more locally-made goodies). This shop has everything from ouija board necklaces to a fetal pig in a jar. Hey, we didn't say it was for everybody. 22801 Woodward, Ferndale. (734) 934-3568 or 

Worthwhile Paper: Crafted in Ypsilanti, this paper company makes twee notebooks, calendars, planners, card sets and more. Their designs tend to relate to nature and magic.

Twitter: @melodybaetens

More ways to shop local

Detroit Urban Craft Fair 

6-9 p.m.  Nov. 30, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Dec. 1 and 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Dec. 2

Masonic Temple

500 Temple, Detroit

$10 admission on Nov. 30, $1 on Dec. 1-2

The Lodge: A Cozy Drinking and Shopping Experience

9 a.m.-9 p.m. Dec. 1 and 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Dec. 2

Detroit Mercantile Co. 

3434 Russell, Detroit

Free admission; leashed pets welcome

(313) 831-9000

Holiday Makers Market

10 a.m.-6 p.m. Dec. 8


1401 Vermont, Detroit

Free admission