With the holidays upon us we’re spending much of our free time at the mall. Whether you’re creating your wish list, hunting for the perfect holiday outfit, or searching for a special gift, this is the time of year to shop. But, instead of going to the same old big-box stores, why not see what your local boutiques have in stock this season? Here are five of the best reasons to shop local.
1. There’s more diversity & individuality.
When everyone is shopping at the mall, clothes start to become variations of the same thing. Suddenly, it’s easy to walk into a restaurant and spot someone wearing the same blouse as you. Fashion is supposed to be a way to express your individuality – don’t let your personality to be silenced by name brands or labels! Shopping local allows you to find clothing and gifts that are truly unique. Boutiques take the time to select items their customers may not discover anywhere else, so take advantage! You’re practically guaranteed to be safe from duplicate holiday gifts or ensembles.
2. You’re supporting local designers.
We all have hometown pride, so it’s great when what you wear reflects that – and I don’t mean sporting your old high school colors or varsity jacket. Wear items designed by people right in your neighborhood! When designers are first starting out, they often ask local boutiques if they are interested in carrying their designs. By favoring local designers’ wares over more-established ones, you are not only supporting their dreams, but also helping to market local talent and stimulating the local economy.
3. You’re giving a story.
Our most prized possessions have one, whether it’s the sweater you found in your mom’s old boxes or the scarf you picked up when discovering a new city. The best gifters and dressers know the importance of telling a story. Shopping local means that you didn’t just grab something off the hanger. Finding a great buy or a unique piece at a boutique is much more fun than picking up a mass-produced item on the shelf. Shopping local for the holidays requires great thought and care, and that always resonates.
4. You’re helping the economy.
Being sustainable is trendy, and there has been a huge push to not only eat locally, but shop locally, too. Boutiques fall into this category. Shopping locally has environmental benefits, like less car pollution and habitat loss, but it also benefits you, personally. According to the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, local businesses often put a large share of their revenue back into the local economy, meaning they are helping your city grow. So, by shopping at boutiques you are not only helping the business, but also you are helping your city continue to prosper.
5. You start the trend.
For me, this is the most enticing reason I have to shop local. You become the trendsetter. I love trying to find something that no one else has worn. Yes, sometimes it fails miserably, but the greatest reward is when I strike gold and everyone wants to copy my look. And that’s the fun in fashion, isn’t it – seeing which trends work, and which don’t? Local boutiques are the trendsetters in the retail world because they constantly hunt for items that will set them apart. How can you not support and respect them?
Why do you #ShopLocal?