The 9 best things to buy at Christmas Village
The Christmas Village at City Hall is a holiday-shopping staple in Philadelphia. But there's a lot stuff to check out, so we dug through to find gifts for everyone on your list.
For the Homebody
Park & Madison was started in 2014 in East Harlem when Jenna Andrews noticed her store-bought candles were leaving black soot on her white apartment walls. She began experimenting with different types of wax to create a clean-burning candle for her home and eventually settled on a soy formula. Since then, she moved to Charleston, S.C., while continuing candle production.
At the Christmas Village, shoppers will find soy candles and room sprays with seasonal scents such as holly berry, mulled cider, and pumpkin.
For the Fashionista
Bella U Boutique has two locations this year: one on Juniper Street at the Christmas Village and one in Dilworth Park at the Made in Philadelphia Holiday Market.
A group of Main Line foodies, including former Conshohocken Cafe owner Michael Oraschewsky, developed and Kickstarted the Bacon Jams in 2013, offering a spread made of bacon, brown sugar, and onions. Now, the jams, as well as other "baconized" foods like bacon rubs and bacon caramel corn, are available in stores all over the country. The original Bacon Jam, $15 for an eight-ounce jar, is available, along with other products including the "Taste of Philly" gift box, at the Bacon Jams stand in the City Hall courtyard.
Mistura Timepieces returns to the Christmas Village this year with watches handcrafted from South American wood and leather. The wooden watches are meant to be statement pieces and conversation starters, and each takes up to 85 hours to make. The watches cost $189 to $499. Mistura also has a collection of wooden sunglasses, which are new this year to the Christmas Village.
For the Collector
Art Pottery Studio sells pottery handmade by small family units or co-op groups in San Juan de Oriente, Nicaragua. The pieces are collaborative efforts, with each step of the process completed by a different member of the group. The Art Pottery Studio stand, at the Christmas Village is in the City Hall courtyard, sells unique vases and bowls.
Elementem Photography creates unique wall decor by taking photographs of familiar sights (like the Philadelphia skyline), printing them onto vinyl, then mounting the photos onto three wooden squares. The three-panel print company is based in New York and offers wall art with photography from all over the world. The prints vary in size, and most cost $100 to $250.
For the Kids
For kids who loved the new movie Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, try the Harry Potter puzzles. The Harry Potter line is $8 to $18, depending on size and style. We suggest "Christmas at Hogwarts," which depicts the famous Great Hall Christmas scene from Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.
The Amazing Light vendor on Juniper Street near Market sells colorful DIY lanterns. The lights are customizable and can be formed into several different shapes with vibrant colors for a cool bedroom decoration.
For the Pooch
Started by a brother-sister team, Kylie's Canine Treats are now sold at shops from the Red Dog Saloon in Juneau, Alaska, to the Cayman Islands. The company, based in New Cumberland, Pa., makes all-natural pet treats from such ingredients as yogurt and peanut butter.
Kylie's Canine Treats is known for its personalized packaging and fun shapes. The brand sells wine-bottle-shaped dog treats in the Finger Lakes region in New York and donkey- and elephant-shaped treats in Washington. The stand at the Christmas Village offers popular treats as well as some new recipes for pets to try.