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Last-minute gift guide

Heading online to shop the websites of big box stores may be one’s first reaction when they think of last-minute Christmas shopping during a pandemic, but it’s still possible to safely support local businesses this winter with these 209 companies who are social media savvy. From gifts for someone with a sweet tooth to treasured finds for the holiday decor enthusiast, the 209 offers some of the best when it comes to finding the perfect present just in the nick of time. 

Name of business: OneSixteen Bijou Boutique

Location: 116 W. Main St., Turlock

Instagram: @bijouturlock

Last-minute gift: Two of OneSixteen Bijou’s best sellers are must-haves when it comes to personalized presents this year. For the fashionista in your life, the boutique’s Custom Leather Keychains ($15.99) or Initial Necklace ($35.99) are the perfect way to give the gift of accessorizing. 

Name of business: The Local Collective

Location: 11 S. Sacramento St., Lodi;

Instagram: @localcollectivelodi

Last-minute gift: While this shop is an ethereal blend of talented creators from throughout the state, the handcrafted earrings, bracelets and necklaces curated by Jennifer Pratt of Her Pretty Things stand out as the perfect gift for those in search of a unique gift. Pratt uses influences from the earth to create jewelry with crystals, macrame and more, and also offers custom stamped pieces for those in search of a personal touch. Jewelry is available in-store and on her website,

Name of business: AMALA Detox & Tea Lounge

Location: 31 S. Washington St., Sonora

Instagram: @amaladetox

Last-minute gift: Amala means “pure and clean” in Sanskrit, and there are plenty of home goods, loose leaf teas, skincare and detox gifts to choose from at AMALA Detox & Tea Lounge in Sonora. If the person you’re buying a gift for has a kitchen that could use a few new tools, AMALA’s wood and marble serving utensils ($17.50), cutting board ($27) or salad tosser ($27) may be just the upgrade they need. Or, if it’s their cup of tea, you can buy a mid-century modern tea kettle ($50) just in time for the cold weather.

Name of business: Jessie Messy Company

Location: Ripon

Instagram: @soyjessiemessy

Last-minute gift: A hand-crafted candle from Jessie Messy Company will help the recipient’s home smell delightful thanks to this company’s wide variety of scents. The “Let’s Stay Home” candle ($25) is the perfect combination of honey, cinnamon and sugar cookie and can make any room smell like home. These candles are made from 100% vegan soy wax and feature wooden wicks which emit a soothing crackle. 

Name of business: Dulce Candies

Location: Merced

Instagram: @dulcecandies_

Last-minute gift: Those in search of something sweet need look no further than Dulce Candies, who offer holiday boxes that can be personalized with up to six different chile-covered or sweet candies. Each box is $16 and comes with 18 ounces of candy.

Name of business: Grandma’s Treasures

Location: Denair

Instagram: @grandmastreasuresca

Last-minute gift: There are plenty of treasures to find at this small-town shop amongst the home decor, tasty treats and upcycled furniture, but one of their most popular items makes for an adorable and unique gift that any home decorator will love. Grandma’s Treasures has every size imaginable of gnomes ($5 to $75) that are sure to bring holiday cheer, from gnome wine bottle toppers to big gnomes who can make any perch look like a comfortable seat. 

Name of business: Poots Cactus Nursery

Location: Ripon

Instagram: @poots_cactus_nursery

Last-minute gift: What’s better than a brand-new plant to take care of during a pandemic that keeps you indoors? For those with a green thumb in their life, a Christmas Cactus from Poots ($10) is the perfect holiday gift. Also known as Schlumbergeras, these plants need water year-round and enjoy being indoors as long as they get enough sunlight. 

Name of business: Spill the Tea Tumblers

Location: Modesto

Instagram: @spilltheteatumblers

Last-minute gift: Everyone needs something to hold their drinks, so why not sip out of something that feels personal? Spill the Tea Tumblers has a wide variety of glitter drinkware and matte tumblers to choose from that can be personalized with a favorite logo, color, pattern or even a picture of a precious pup. Prices range from $20 to $40 depending on the size and shape of the drinkware. 

Name of business: Jayme Lee’s Home Sweet Wreaths

Location: Escalon

Instagram: @homesweetwreaths

Last-minute gift: Nothing says home for the holidays like a customized wreath to greet you at the front door. And they’re not just for Christmas — Jayme Lee can handcraft a one-of-a-kind wreath for any holiday, occasion or season, making these products the perfect gift which can be used time and time again. Prices range from $90 to $150, and each wreath comes with a custom storage box.

Name of business: Honey Up Gloss

Location: Stockton

Instagram: @honeyupgloss

Last-minute gift: Honey Up Gloss offers a vast range of cruelty-free beauty products, but as cold weather blasts through the 209 and causes dry skin, the Whipped Body Scrub ($7.99) is a perfect Christmas gift for any fan of self-care. This scrub removes dead skin cells by gently exfoliating and contains coconut oil to keep skin hydrated. For those who want to give their lashes or brows a boost, Honey Up Gloss also makes a special Eyelash and Eyebrow Serum ($5.99) made from four different oils which promote hair growth and stops breakage. 

Name of business: Cen Cal Smoke BBQ Supplies

Location: Modesto

Instagram: @cencalsmokepellets

Last-minute gift: For the barbecue master in your life, Cen Cal Smoke is the perfect one-stop shop for gifts that are sure to make the process of cooking dinner look as good as it tastes. The shop has a large selection of rubs, sauces and accessories to choose from. (no images available)