This gift guide is not only for all of the moms, stepmoms, mother figures, pet moms, plant moms and any other type of mom but for any time you just need an amazing gift for someone you love.
I myself am a proud pup mom of 3 beautiful English Springer Spaniels (Oliver, Lincoln and Rembrandt and a Mississippi Map turtle (Einstein) and of course anyone who knows me knows I have a forest/jungle of plants too! My boys are my world, I love them so very it hurts and I would do anything for them, they are my kids.
Now onto the gift guide!!!!!
This guide is based on some of my absolute favourite businesses, some are local and others are larger but amazing both for what they have product wise but also what they stand for. In my opinion, anyone getting a gift from these incredible places will be ecstatic!! Please note these are in no particular order of preference, there is no way I could rank any of these amazing brands! Each business title has been linked for you so you can head straight over and check them out!
If you have been following along with me for any length of time you will know just how much I adore Pokoloko. I first discovered them oh jeez, I want to say close to 8 years ago now (the pandemic has admittedly messed with my sense of time overall but it has been a really long time). They are a company that works with high quality artisans all over the globe and in doing so they are lifting up entire communities, sharing beautiful goods that are handmade and may not otherwise be attainable, they plant 2 trees for every purchase, and they work with communities to build schools and other community programs. They are working towards a more sustainable globe were we are all benefit from what we have and enrich each others lives.
What drew me to them first was their line of incredible Alpaca products. I am someone who is allergic to wool but always wanted the warmth if a natural fibre so when I came across Pokoloko and their amazing alpaca I gave it a try and have never looked back.
Their alpaca products hooked me, I have scarves, toques, blankets and an incredible sweater and I use them endlessly. Alpaca is a truly incredible fibre (referred to as the fibre of the gods), for everything you need to know on alpaca check out this post and for all the tips on how to care for it, head to this post I wrote.
Not only is Pokoloko my favourite place for alpaca, which I am sure you are thinking it is May we don’t need alpaca, save that for winter, you are correct and because of that I direct you to the other wonders of Pokoloko. Like their incredible Turkish towels which are so versatile because they can be towels, scarves, blankets, yoga mats and more. They are crazy absorbent and dry ridiculously fast, they come in an array of colours and patterns to fit any decor and sizes for every room.
I am also completely obsessed with their Bali bags! My collection is growing but there is always another one that I want. The interior lining in each bag is created from remnant fabric, which is not only more sustainable and reduces waste, it also allows for each bag to be unique in its own way. There are a variety of shapes, sizes and colours to chose from, so one is never enough. They can wildly change the look of an outfit due to their unique woven nature.
Pokoloko also has pillows, home decor, these crazy comfy crinkle cotton sets, dresses and so so much more. You will definitely find that special someone something amazing!
Pokoloko has a location in Westboro, Gatineau, is available online, and can be found in a number of great shops all over!
(Also, as I have had the privilege of becoming a Pokoloko Partner a couple of years ago, if you use code SIMPLYABOUTME at checkout, in store or online, you can get 15% off!!)
This is a lovely little online boutique that offers a variety of clothing, hats, bags, and accessories. It is a local business run out of Stittsville and it is owned by an incredible women who also runs Ritual on Main coffee shop.
I discovered Village Envy through the first coffee shop she opened The Thirty Maiden in Kanata and one day was just browsing the new arrivals and came across this vegan ranger hat. Why is this so cool you ask? Well as I mentioned above, I am allergic to wool and most hats of this style are made with wool felt, as are cloche hats, fedoras, wide brim floppy hats and so on. Well wool felt means I can’t have them and I love all of these hat styles and if you can find them not made from wool felt they usually cost a fortune.
So when I saw that these were vegan and it was clear I could have them with no reactions or consequences and they were affordable I was thrilled to say the least. I purchased the light grey version and instantly fell in love!
When additional colours came out I was like oh my gosh I need more and everyone knew it!! Well I have some incredible friends because for Christmas I received the forest green version of the hat and I mean at Christmas time how perfect is that and just recently for my birthday I received the light blue colour which is perfect for spring and summer! So now I have the light grey, forest green and light blue….and there are so many colours to get!!
As I mentioned, Village Envy is so much more than just hats and I am sure that you can easily find so many options here for all your gift giving needs.
Knix has become such an incredible business, from small to large and expanding everyday. It was started by Joanna Griffiths in Toronto and let me just say she has been completely killing it!
Knix offers bras, underwear, sleep, lounge, activewear, swimwear (which the most recent collection, jaw dropping, it looks just incredible!), robes, tanks and bodysuits, period underwear (ditch those disposables), thigh savers, and maternity and postpartum. I mean the lines are simply incredible.
I was actually made aware of Knix through some of the people I follow myself on social media and after checking them out and even though I liked what I saw, I admittedly had to decide whether to give it a go or not because I mean I wasn’t in Toronto and so I couldn’t see what I was getting first hand. Well then there was a warehouse sale and I figured this is my sign. I placed and order and I have never looked back from those many years ago.
The underwear is so comfortable, the leakproof is legit (whether you need it or just want the safety of knowing you are protected at any point), saying goodbye to liners and such is just, there are no words. I am also completely addicted to the thigh savers because they do just that, save thigh rub, so bring on the skirts and dresses.
Now you may say, ok I am not getting someone underwear and that is valid but that doesn’t stop you from getting the pjs, the activewear, the loungewear, the swimwear or even just a gift card so they can pick out whatever they want and they will not be disappointed.
Not sure about sizing either, well Knix offers both in store assistance and virtual fittings with one of their fit specialists for all your fitting needs. These fitting appointments are so easy and so comfortable. Their fit specialists ask all the right questions and help guide you through the process so that you can find exactly the size you need.
They have locations all over Canada and the US with the Ottawa location in Westboro, so check out the website to find one closest to you.
Ok, so Ponyback hats!! This is one of my favourites because I have been a customer for quite a bit now and have watched this little company ran out of the inventor, owner and operators home (through increasingly larger spaces in the house) to their current location in a full on warehouse in the GTA!
Ponyback is the brainchild of Stacey Keller, a former business teacher, mom of 3, a genius, coffee lover, and an all around incredible person!
Stacey came up with the idea for Ponyback to solve a gap in her own life and from there it blossomed.
So what is a Ponyback hat already?
It is a baseball cap, that looks like a fullback baseball cap but then BAM, the entire back seam opens up and you can pull your ponytail, bun or any combination of hairstyles out of the back seam, style it at whatever height you want from the button at the top through to the bottom seam and the beauty is that once you’ve pulled your hair through the back seam does back up!!!!! Like what?
The seam is magnetic so it just connects back together around your hair leaving this beautiful seamless look for you to rock all day long. No giant hole in the back! And what’s even better is that if you want to wear your hair down, well go for it because it just looks like a fullback hat with the seem closed! One hat to rule them all lol!!
Anyone who is active, loves rocking a baseball hat, a ponytail or bun needs this hat in their life.
They come in a few different styles, the Everyday, the Adventure and the Sporty. Each one has something a little different about it, and the Everyday comes in a variety of incredible colours. There are a wide range of sizes to fit anyone, including youth!!
Stacey also launched some new apparel and accessories last year.
Like I said I have been following Ponyback and Stacey for a while now, I was an early adopter and I love love love my Ponyback hats (because yes, I have more than 1), so when Ponyback launched their ambassador program I jumped at the chance to officially share this incredible company and support this unbelievable entrepreneur!
(Another bonus is that for a limited time there is a 20% off sale for Mother’s Day)
Avène Eau Thermale is a skincare brand out of France and they are my favourite skincare brand. I have written about them a few times.
I started using Avène over 10 years ago with one product Cicalfate and now I use so many products you could go shopping in my bathroom lol.
Why is Avène so special? Well there are a variety of different reasons, one is the thermal spring water they use in their products that is simply magic, the research and development that goes into each product to ensure it’s safety for all those using it, gentle yet effective enough for even the worst dermatological issues. As someone with sensitive and allergic skin this is incredibly important for me.
Cicalfate for instance in a restorative cream and can be used on burns, cuts, rashes, acne, bug bites, pretty much you name it and it will take care of it.
Have rosacea, well the AntiRougeur line could very well be the answer. I have a friend that has rosacea and it gets so bad that they were prescribed an expensive cream to help. I recommended Avène AntiRouguer and after trying it they no longer need their prescription, the Avène line takes care of their needs completely. This will vary by person of course but it is highly effective for my friend.
Avène products are not only affordable they are effective and feel luxurious. Who doesn’t love getting the gift of skincare? It is one of my favourite things to get because taking care of my skin is so important and honestly I haven’t found a single Avène product that I haven’t loved, nor has anyone that I have hooked onto them as far as I know.
Avène can be found at most drug stores, in the cosmetics department. For full details on this amazing brand, check out this previous posts.
The One World Bazaar is all of the world brought together in one place. The incredible business has been around for 40 years and just seems to get better and better with each year that passes.
This is another business I have been going to for a number of years, probably 8 at this point and there is always something new to discover.
They travel the world finding treasures handmade by local artisans and they bring them back to Manotick to share. They have formed incredible relationships with the artisans and the communities they visit and purchase goods from, enabling them to share their talents and help their communities.
They have everything, furniture, textiles, so many wood products like vases, cutting boards, utensils, and more, jewelry, clothing, art, glassware, toys, and the list goes on and on.
The bazaar is only open on weekends a few months in the fall and as a result of COVID it is now also available online! Every year I head to the bazaar ready to find new treasures, I always leave with jewelry because the selection and quality is amazing, and with several gifts for my friends and family, there is so much to choose from.
I can’t image how anyone could not find something at the bazaar to take home with them or package up and give as a gift to someone they love.
This is a great little flower shop in Westboro where all your plant dreams come true.
Ok so flowers as a gift so cliche you might say, well this little shop is more than just grabbing some flowers.
Yes their bouquets are stunning, but they also have a wide variety of plants to fit in any home and they will help you find the right one to fit your needs (safe for pets, care requirements, lighting, size, intent for the space).
They also have home decor and not just pots for this plants, candles, tea, chocolate, clothing and so much more.
Still don’t want to get a bouquet or a plant well how about a workshop? They run these amazing workshops that teach you how to make wreaths or a plant a succulent arrangement or put together a bouquet and more. Not only does this give the gift of the plant or flowers but it is the gift of an experience and skills. Something fun to do with other people, a night out to laugh and relax.
Nordik Spa-Nature is located in Chelsea Quebec and it is heaven!
It has thermal baths and saunas located across the property so you can experience relaxation in a variety of settings, multiple restaurants, a variety of spa services available, the KÄLLA saltwater flotation pool, a variety of Aufguss rituals and more.
With the pandemic it has been a while since I’ve been but it had become a tradition to go every spring with one of my fav people. We would get there for opening and spend the day just relaxing, chatting and enjoying some time to catch up. It would often be dark before we’d head home and we both would sleep soundly when we tucked in for the night. There is nothing quite like a day at Nordik.
They even have accomodations you can book for the night, the weekend, or even a longer getaway.
Whether you get this gift for someone to enjoy solo or together you can’t go wrong! They have so many options!
These are a few of my favourite businesses, brands and people I hope that you check them out and find a gift that is just right for that special person in your life, even if that is yourself 😉
Just remember it’s never about the gift, it’s about the thought and sometimes all that special someone wants is a day with you, to relax, to talk, to eat good food and make memories.
Happy shopping and Happy Mother’s Day!