‘Tis the season to start thinking about holiday gift-giving. Only this year, it comes with a unique pandemic-infused twist.
To help make the annual holiday shopping experience more of a joyous occasion and less of a chore, Lowe Mill Arts & Entertainment is hosting its fourth annual “Yule Y’all,” from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Dec. 5. Enjoy one of the most popular outdoor-centric holiday market and spirit sampling events of the season. There will be a tantalizing assortment of maker art, holiday creations, food, and music, along with a spirited chaser. This year’s event will also fully embrace the social distancing mindset and mask protocol.
The lighting of the iconic Lowe Mill water tower will take place at 5 p.m.
With more than 150 working studios and seven galleries, there’s something for everyone at Lowe Mill. From Cigar box guitars to sculpture and all points in between. What’s more, it’s all created by local artisans and/or owned by local entrepreneurs. Support Your Community: Shop Local!
Lowe Mill Arts and Entertainment
2211 Seminole Drive
Hours: Wednesday-Thursday, noon-6 p.m.; Friday, noon-8 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
(Note: Individual vendors and artists’ hours may vary)
Facebook: Lowe Mill Arts
Wondering where to begin? Here’s a handful of clever gift ideas, designed to jumpstart even the stubbornest of holiday shopper’s block. If crowds are a concern, many of the businesses listed also have an online retail presence. Listed below are a few of the many talented artisans, makers, and entrepreneurs in Huntsville/Madison. Beginning at Lowe Mill.
CHOCOLATE’S THE WORD
For those stumped on what to buy, it’s hard to go wrong with the gift of chocolate. This isn’t any ordinary chocolate, mind you. Owners Caitlin Lyon and Michelle Novosel have built a mini empire based on their elaborate, unique, and most importantly, delicious confections. In addition to chocolates, there are mini-cakes, ice cream, and chocolate and coffee beverages. Coming soon, just in time for the holidays: Pizzelle’s fabulous Drinking Chocolate ornaments. Willy Wonka beams proudly over their well-run enterprise.
Railroad Room 4A
Hours: Wednesday-Saturday, noon-4 p.m.
Facebook: Pizzelle’s Confections
THERE’S A SONG FOR THAT
Everyone loves the gift of music. And vinyl has made a comeback in a big way. Vertical House has a plethora of 33-1/3 titles, from the well-known to the most obscure. As a fixture at Lowe Mill since 2007, Vertical House is your go-to for all genres of music. Their newest location has more square footage, which means more CDs, cassettes, 8-tracks, and of course, more VINYL. If something you want isn’t in stock, owner Andy Vaughn can order it for you.
Vertical House Records
Railroad Room 9
Hours: Wednesday – Friday, noon– 6 p.m.; Saturday, noon–5 p.m.
Facebook: Vertical House Records
JEWELRY IS A GAL’S BEST FRIEND
It can also be a guy’s best buddy, right? Connie Ulrich’s jewelry is a fusion of natural materials and skillfully worked metals and precious stones. Her studio presents an attractive selection of hand-crafted jewelry, rings, bracelets, necklaces, and earrings. There’s even a workshop for making your own ring! Along with the amazing assortment of jewelry, Ulrich also has a fine selection of small paintings available for sale.
Hours: Friday, noon-6 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; and by appointment only
Facebook: Connie Ulrich Studio
WELCOME TO FABULOUS HUNTSVEGAS
Cheers to the Rocket City! If you’re seeking unique, head to Green Pea Press. Green Pea Press has a wide assortment of t-shirts, mugs, coasters, koozies, earrings, and stickers. They also have an assortment of frame worthy screen print art. For those who would appreciate an “experience” kind of gift, Green Pea Pressoffers printing workshops and classes. Gift certificates are also available from $25-up.
Green Pea Press
Hours: Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
Facebook: Green Pea Press
In addition to its Lowe Mill studio, Green Pea Press has a location on Governors Drive:
Green Pea Press
2720 Governors Drive
Hours: Monday-Friday: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Up-and-coming resin artist Kenzie Johnston (aka KenziB) will first delight you with her personality, then with her eye-catching and creative assortment of colorful geode-like designs and preserved flowers in resin. The flowers are always bright and fresh; Johnston picks up a new batch daily.
Hours: Wednesday-Saturday, noon-6 p.m.
WHISKEY A GO-GO
One man, One whiskey. NASA engineer Jeff Irons has a natural gift for distilling only the best. Love, patience, and commitment are evident in the final product. And for those reasons, Irons One has continued to grow exponentially in popularity. Irons One is a small batch, handcrafted whiskey. “The only way I know how to make the best whiskey is to be totally involved in every step of the process,” says Irons. “I can only do that if I stay small enough in size to manage each step.” Be sure to check online and sign up to the Irons One e-mail list for product updates and availability.
Irons One Whiskey
Hours: Wednesday-Saturday, noon-6 p.m.
Although Lowe Mill provides one of the most uniquely creative shopper’s paradise, here are a few more places to consider.
BEER IS THE WORD
If you’re looking for exceptional craft beer, look no further than Das Stahl Bierhaus. With 32 beers on tap, you can have some now, then take some home in a 32- or 64-ounce glass growler.
One of the big hits at Das Stahl this season are the Advent beer calendars. The calendars come pre-assembled and filled with a jolly assortment of holiday brewskis. The Advent box can also be purchased and filled with a selection of personal favorites. Not sure what beers to buy? For $15 more, one of the crew at Das Stahl can fill up that calendar with a selection that’s guaranteed to delight. In addition to draft beer, Das Stahl Bierhaus sells a wide assortment of canned and bottled beers, decorative steins, branded glassware, and t-shirts. Still undecided? There’s always the gift card option.
Das Stahl Bierhaus
7914 Memorial Pkwy SW, B2 (Village Center)
Hours: Monday-Wednesday, noon-8 p.m.; Thursday, noon-9 p.m.
Friday & Saturday 10 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sunday, 2-8 p.m.
SWEET HOME ALABAMA
When looking for the perfect gift, check out Alabama Goods. Along with assorted gift baskets, Alabama Goods boasts one of the largest selections of Alabama-made pottery. In fact, everything in the store is created by artisans here in our sweet home Alabama! Owners Sherry Hartley and Beth Staula search far and wide throughout the state for just the right art, jewelry, pottery, crafts, and food items.
2722 Carl T. Jones Drive, Valley Bend Shopping Center
Hours: Monday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sunday, noon-5 p.m.
Facebook: Alabama Goods Huntsville
Uncorked is in the heart of Providence Main and owner Saranne Riccio’s secret to her success lies in her simple philosophy, “Wine doesn’t have to be intimidating.” Along with a variety of wines to suit any budget, there are tasty tidbits, such as Mama’s cheese straws, Arabella’s dilled onions, candied jalapenos, and pepper jelly; Belle Chevre goat cheeses, and Pizzelle’s chocolates. Add these delightful goodies with a great bottle of wine to your next gift basket.
Uncorked Wine Shop & Tasting Room
485 Providence Main St
Hours: Tuesday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-7 p.m.; Friday, noon-8 p.m.; Saturday, noon-7 p.m.
Closed Sundays and Mondays
Facebook: Uncorked Wine Shop Tasting Room
And don we now, our seasonal apparel. If you’re looking for a variety of ladies and kid’s clothing, along with assorted accessories and swag, Redbird Boutique is the place to go. Co-joined with University Pickers, Redbird features over 60 local designers and there’s a wide variety of items to choose from. Bird is the word, shop local!
Redbird Boutique and Gifts at University Pickers
3024 University Drive
Hours: Monday – Friday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m.–6 p.m.; Sunday, noon–5 p.m.
Facebook: Redbird Boutique and Gifts
Listed below are two of the many local designers with merchandise available at Redbird Boutique.
WHISK YOU WERE HERE
The brainchild of Jonathon Fowler, Fow Wow merchandise is iconic, quirky, and uniquely Huntsville. Many of the designs are sure to provoke a smile, or even a laugh. Fow Wow brand products are sold throughout Huntsville in retail establishments, such as Redbird Boutique and Huntsville Museum of Art. Merchandise can also be ordered online. Check their website or Facebook page for a complete selection of products.
Fow Wow Designs
Facebook: Fow Wows
SOUTHWESTERN HEART CHIC
Summer Sklar, an El Paso native-Huntsville transplant, puts her heart and soul, along with beads and wire, into her captivating assortment of Mexican/Southwestern-meets funky chic jewelry. Sklar creates a beautiful selection of earrings, necklaces, bracelets, and wine charms. Each piece of Heart & Wire jewelry is one-of-a-kind and is available at Redbird Boutique or via online at the Heart & Wire website. Custom orders are also welcomed.
Heart & Wire
Facebook: Heart and Wire