Pop-Cycle. 422 N. Fourth Ave. Between the adorable, monster-adorned clothing and hats, the clever T-shirts, the locally-crafted jewelry, the charming wall hangings, the sweet stickers, the incredible-smelling candles and the whimsical lighting fixtures, it can be hard not to spend hours wandering around Pop-Cycle on a normal day, when you have nothing to buy. But now that it's the holidays, you have an excuse to take it all in! To browse through each individual print until you find the right one for your sister-in-law, or to chat with the friendly staff for as long as it takes to figure out which belt buckle your dad would like better. There's truly nothing like the holiday season.
Tiny Town Surplus & Gallery, 408 N. Fourth Ave. If you love Tucson—even if you love Tucson for the most part but hate it a little bit in the summertime when it's way too hot—Tiny Town is one of the best places in town to pick up some gear that shows your Tucson pride. The sticker selection is impressive, there are T-shirts with maps of Tucson or that feature a friendly clown and the phrase "monsoon season" and there's tons and tons of cactus-themed art. Many of their products come from Tanline Printing, a local print shop that does everything from record lathe cutting to printing silly sayings on cassette inserts and beer cozies.
Tucson Museum of Art. 140 N. Main Ave. Take in some culture— 30 Americans is a must-see show this season—and then browse the expanded gift shop to find one-of-a-kind gifts crafted by local artists. Once you're done, be sure to check out El Nacimiento, the 800-piece nativity scene that will dazzle your senses.
Bookmans Entertainment Exchange. Multiple locations. Bookmans is the kind of place you could easily walk out of with an armful of purchases—all of which you're completely satisfied with—every time you go in. It's also the sort of place where you'll see something you really like, and really want, but think maybe you don't need. This holiday season, head into your favorite Bookmans and find all of the things your friends and family wanted to buy for themselves this year but didn't. It's a treasure trove of art prints for your aunt, pins for your pals, SNES games for your sister and mugs for your mom.
Annabell's Attic. 6718 E. Speedway Blvd. Speaking of Bookmans, this shop which bills itself as an upscale resale home furnishings store is right next to the easternmost Bookmans location on Speedway. But even if you're not in the market for an antique dining set, a vintage couch or a cabinet full of china (they have more than 100 of those), you'll be able to get some of your holiday shopping done here, and you'll have fun doing it. Browse through aisles of collectibles; cut glass figurines; fine jewelry; and the largest assortment of china, silver and crystal in the Tucson area. They also have an extensive collection of books and several shelves of old records for just a dollar each. Most of this stuff is more affordable than you'd expect, and you'll probably end up spending more time exploring all of its nooks and crannies than you'd expect as well.
Old Town Artisans. 201 N. Court Ave. Maybe you've had a drink, or some chile relleno at La Cocina. But if you thought this place was just a bar and restaurant, then you must never have tried both of the courtyard bathrooms, found they were occupied, and wandered into the maze of gift shops. You'll go from a room full of handcrafted ceramics to an area of new and used fashion to an art gallery to a jewelry store to a record store in a series of shops that feel like they go on forever. It's a pleasure to just start wandering through the rooms to see what you find, and the diversity in products make it a good place to go if you like one-stop-shopping.Madaras Gallery. 3035 N. Swan Road. You know how there are certain foods that just make you think of home, or some songs that take you right back to the town you grow up in? Diana Madaras' art evokes Tucson in a way that can have you feeling nostalgic for the Old Pueblo even if you're in it right at that moment. Her gallery is the perfect place to pick up gifts for Tucson lovers, art lovers and even cow lovers (she has a whole section in her gallery just called the Cow Store). Pick up a calendar, a card, a cutting board, a set of coasters, an ornament, a phone case, a notebook, a mug or any number of other products with her art on them. Or, if you really feel like splurging, you can pick up a Diana Madaras original. And be sure to take advantage of their holiday special on small framed canvas art. Choose from 20 paintings that are normally $210, now just $125.
Summit Hut. Multiple locations. If there's someone in your life who loves adventure, you should probably stop into Summit Hut to pick them something up this Christmas. Because they're going to have exactly what your favorite adventurer is looking for. Maybe it's a super lightweight tent, a new Hydro Flask, some adventure footwear or some sort of superfood to eat out on the trail. Or maybe it's a cute dress covered in colorful cacti, for the feminine adventurer, or a T-shirt with some trees on it, for the tree-loving adventurer. When it comes to practicality, you can't go wrong at Summit Hut—and they've got combining practical with aesthetically pleasing down pat.
Tap & Bottle. 403 N. Sixth Ave. and 7254 N. Oracle Road. What holiday season is complete without a bottle of wine or a six-pack of Arizona-brewed beer? Tap & Bottle has one of the best curated selections in town, with an emphasis on local but plenty of other options on the shelves. Gift cards are also available if you figure it's better to let your gift recipient choose their own adventure.
Sparkle Cleaners. Multiple locations. Bet you didn't think of this one, did you? Think about it though: Who looks forward to taking their clothes to the dry cleaner? This holiday season, you can give a loved one the ultimate gift by taking their dry cleaning in to Sparkle Cleaners for them! Imagine how happy you would be if you came home and all your dry cleaning was dry cleaned without you having to go to the dry cleaner. Cleanliness is next to godliness, sure. And in the dictionary, it's also pretty close to "Christmas." Their holiday special is $1 off any black dry-cleaned garment.
Fuschia La Encantada. 2905 E. Skyline Drive. People are always making jokes about the worst Christmas gifts they've ever gotten—an ugly sweater, a fruitcake, a sad clown painting, whatever. But you know what no one has ever said was a terrible gift? A custom massage. Or a facial. Or anything that involves guilt-free relaxation. Throughout December, the purchase of a $100 gift card at Fuschia gets you a $15 gift voucher (so hey, maybe you bought the gift card for a loved one, only to find the perfect opportunity to treat yourself too). For the gift that keeps on giving, a membership is $69 a month, and includes a 50-minute massage or facial every month, plus 10 percent off upgrades and product sales. Santa Claus only comes once a year, but you can keep the scents and ahhs coming all year 'round.
Rosie's Barket. 327 E. Seventh St. If you have a dog who unconditionally shows love and affection no matter what mood you may be in, treat your pup to some tasty treats and fun accessories this holiday season. Rosie's Barket, right off Fourth Avenue, is home to unique snacks and toys during the holidays and year round. This dog boutique features a dog wash station where dogs can be groomed and washed with natural products for a mere $15 and a bakery that serves up cookie treats and freshly smoked bones. (Check out Smoked Bone Saturdays for your local bone marrow needs!) You'll also find leashes, harnesses, collars, dog tags, booties, bandanas and dog tags with cute sayings like, "I love tennis balls" and "I'm a lover, not a biter." Wait a minute—are you buying presents for your dog or yourself? Either way, you can't go wrong: Rosie's Barket donates every month to a different animal-based non-profit.
Generation Cool. 404 N. Fourth Ave. Take a step into the past and reminisce on childhood memories at Generation Cool, a vibrant '80s and '90s vintage shop located on Fourth Avenue. Look through a sizeable selection of new and old pop-culture fashion like old-school jerseys, classic band tees, baseball caps, Tommy Hilfiger polos and Adidas sneakers. They've even got light-up beer signs perfect for a man cave. Shirts can go anywhere from $10 to $30, jerseys are priced from $20 to $60 and hats sell at $10 to $20. The shop shelves are also loaded with an array of vintage toys and collectibles, including action figurines and classic comic book characters. Generation Cool buys, sells and trades items at the store. Relive the '90s era and check out Generation Cool to snag a memorable vintage gift this holiday season. Carlos Diaz Silversmiths. 2815 N. Campbell Ave. This is where Carlos Diaz, a local master silversmith, works his magic! Diaz has lived in Tucson for 65 years and is known for making his own designs using silver, gold, diamonds and other gemstones. Carlos Diaz Silversmiths opened in 1958 and boasts a large and unique collection of genuine Southwest Native American jewelry. Diaz has dedicated his entire life to the craft. Growing up in South America, he became an apprentice for his uncle at the age of 14 and quickly realized he had a passion for it. Visit Carlos Diaz Silversmiths for their beautiful selection of handmade, local jewelry.
The Beauty Spot. 10420 N. La Canada Drive, Oro Valley. Some things in life make you feel happy, and some things in life are good for you. And they don't seem to intersect very often. The Beauty Spot is a place where you go to feel good, get treatments that are good for you, and get beautiful. What's could be a better gift? Their holiday special is a 20/30/40/50 deal, so buying two packages or services gets you 20 percent off, three gets you 30 percent off and so on. And when the options are treatments like a jasmine and lavender salt scrub, a papaya-pineapple crème fraiche wrap and a customized facial, the more the merrier. And this weekend for Black Friday, book or purchase a service Friday, Nov. 23, through Sunday, Nov. 25 and get 50 percent off!
Tohono Chul Park. 7366 N. Paseo del Norte. Tohono Chul Park isn't just a great place to visit on a warm fall afternoon. It's also an ideal spot to shop for western gifts and jewelry. You also will enjoy the annual Holiday Lights show, featuring performances, beautiful lights and a visit from jolly ol' St. Nick himself. The park is open seven days a week and the Holiday Lights are from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday Nov. 30, and Dec. 1, 7, 8, 14 and 15.
Downtown Tucson eGift Card. Sometimes it's hard to narrow down what you want to buy someone, so you just get them a gift card for a store you know they like. But sometimes it's hard to even narrow it down to one store. Which is where this lifesaver comes in. Good at more than 50 participating businesses, including MOCAShop, Borderlands Brewing Co., the Tucson Children's Museum, HUB, Johnny Gibson's Downtown Market and the Rialto Theatre, it's the perfect gift for any loved one. As long as they enjoy eating, or having nice things, or live music, or museums. Pick one up at downtowntucson.org.
Hotel Congress/Maynards Market & Kitchen Gift Card. 311 E. Congress Street/400 N. Toole Ave. From Black Friday to Cyber Monday, Hotel Congress and Maynards are offering a deal where if you buy $100 in gift cards, you get a $25 bonus. A great opportunity for you to share of the delights at either downtown hot spot and get a little something for yourself, too! Friday, Nov. 23, to Monday, Nov. 26.
Blue Willow. 2616 N. Campbell Ave. The gift shop at this Tucson institution is loaded with folk art, socks, jewelry and other whimsy, along with plenty of clever holiday cards to pack a gift card into. And best of all: You can take a break from your shopping marathon to enjoy a meal on the serene patio.
Plunkett's Office Products. 420 N. Wilmot Road. A store full of office supplies might not sound like a fun place to do Christmas shopping, but the "office products" part of the name is a bit of a misnomer. This is more like a gift shop with a bit of a practical streak—think "lots and lots of super fancy pens." And do you know anyone who couldn't benefit from a super fancy pen? Plunkett's is also well-known for having a nice streak: The friendly staff are on-deck to help you order cards for the holidays, pick out the perfect ornament or point you toward the in-store post office. That's right! Pick you your gifts and send them right on to their destinations, all from the same store. Beyond Bread. Multiple locations. A restaurant as a gift shop? It's more likely than you think. But it's not Beyond Bread itself you should be checking out, but the sweet and savory goodness just out back. The "Back Dough," where you can buy whole loaves and pies freshly-baked from the Beyond Bread employees themselves, is a great place to buy your friends a nice gluten-stuffed gift that will keep them warm and full through these rough Sonoran nights. The Back Dough is more than a clever name, it's a cozy, hidden bakery AND a clever name.
Antigone Books. 411 N. Fourth Ave. This bookstore is like a microcosm of all things Tucson: local authors, hats adorned with desert creatures, volumes of poetry, kitschy calendars, witty T-shirts, and on top of it all, it's locally owned and locally supported. If you're on Fourth Ave. and need to find a quick gift for a friend, Antigone is a great place to head to. And if you want to get a book for a friend but don't know where to start, Antigone has plenty to choose from on their recommended reading lists and in their book groups.
Holidays at the Markets. Heirloom Farmers Markets is a collective of several local farmers markets, and this December, there will be more than 200 farm, food and art vendors across the four of them coming together to make your holiday shopping easy. Bring your family, friends or pets to have your portrait taken by market photographer Pedro Romano ($10 each or four photos for $25, with proceeds benefitting upgrades to the Rillito Park Pavilions). And bring your holiday cheer—you may leave with an empty wallet, but you'll also leave with a full heart, bags full of gifts and maybe even a totally finished Christmas shopping list. Here's a lineup of the special deals:
• 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 12, at Green Valley Village, 101 N. La Canada Drive, Green Valley
• 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, Dec. 14, at Trail Dust Town, 6541 E. Tanque Verde Road
• 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15, at Steam Pump Ranch, 10901 N. Oracle Road, Oro Valley
• 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 16, at the Rillito Park Food Pavilion, 4502 N. First Ave.
The Folk Shop. 2525 N. Campbell Ave. The wonderful thing about The Folk Shop is that you're going to love wandering through the aisles of mandolins, accordions, banjos, harps, ouds, drums and wooden pipes even if you're not a musician yourself. This shop full of new, used and vintage musical instruments is the perfect place to shop for the musician in your life. The friendly staff—consisting of Milo, the owner; Merricat, the retail goddess; Wally, the time lord: Gabe, the sales guy/service guy/camel trader; and Dalton, the director of hospitality (Dalton is a dog)—is there to answer questions about anything and everything.
Midtown Mercantile Merchants. 4443 E. Speedway Blvd. If you love going on a hunt for the perfect holiday gifts, this is the place for you. Rooms upon rooms chock full of antiques draw you through a maze of themed stands from multiple collectors. Find everything from furniture to Wild West boots and decor to handmade Christmas tree ornaments. Described on their website as an "antique mall with vintage flair and a nod to mid-century modern with a twist" you are sure to find something for everyone on your list. Pick up some antique crystal glassware for mom, jewelry for the lady in your life and maybe even a retro leather jacket for dad. The fun thing about this antique mall is the collection is always changing, so swing by multiple times throughout the holiday season to snag that perfect find.
Time Market. 444 E. University Blvd. So you know you love Time Market's pizza and their coffee is pretty delicious too. But Time Market is also a great place to find holiday gifts for all the foodies in your life. Grab a specialty sauce to cook with, a great bottle of wine or choose from a selection of high-cacao percentage chocolates. Yum! Time Market is making it easy this year to do a little one-stop-shopping with pre-packaged goodies and gift wrap as nice as the gifts themselves. Time Market has creative gifts galore, and also is the perfect place to stop by on your way to any holiday party. Pick up a bottle of wine and one of their unique bouquets of flowers and be on Santa's good list this year.
Rustic Candle Company. 324 N. Fourth Ave. Whether you need candles for the holiday dinner table or have a friend on your gift list who loves a flickering flame, Rustic Candle Company is the place for you. The candles here are hand-poured in all different shapes and sizes, with fresh fragrances such as Sea Breeze, Dragon's Blood and Boyfriend's Jacket. You'll also find funky-shaped candles such as stars, hearts and laughing Buddhas. And they'll wrap the candles for free. Visit the store and breathe in all the scents of hand-crafted candles to boost your shopping mood.
Pitaya. 943 E University Blvd. If you are on the hunt for the perfect gift for the high-school or college age young woman in your life and you are sick of the same-old same-old at the mall, head over to Pitaya on University Boulevard. One of the more cost-effective stores on University, Pitaya has a range of fashionable clothing, jewelry and accessories that are sure to make you the cool gift giver this year. Pick up a fun hat or trendy handbag from this fun and funky store. Pitaya has on-trend items as well as classics. If you are unsure what to pick out, the helpful cashiers are sure to point you in the right direction.
Gather Vintage Market. 657 W Saint Mary's Road. If you are looking for a one-of-a-kind, one-time-only gift, you have got to get to Gather this holiday season. Open for one weekend only each month, the December market runs Dec. 6-9. Located in the Old Arizona Sash and Door Warehouse, you'll walk through the doors of the warehouse and magically be transported into another time. Gather has two floors of vintage and unique gifts ranging from large to small. Find something perfect for the home bird in your life. Each month Gather has a different theme, so check their Facebook page to find out December's theme closer to the event. Mark your calendar for the market weekend, as there are also smaller markets located within the warehouse area that usually align their opening dates.
Fourth Avenue Street Fair. Twice a year Tucson's favorite Fourth Avenue is transformed into a sea of tents bursting with local art from over 300 international artisans. The winter market, being held this year on Dec. 7-9, is sure to have something for everyone on your list. Plus, what better way to make gift shopping fun than to do it outside while strolling the avenue, eating yummy food and enjoying live music? The Street Fair draws more than 500,000 people each year, so make sure to plan where you park ahead of time. Fourth Avenue and some of the surrounding streets are closed to car traffic during the fair, which is located along Fourth Avenue from University Boulevard to Eighth Street. A free shuttle service will be provided from Pennington Street Garage and Tyndall Avenue Garage, and the streetcar will be operating to take shoppers to the fair.
Pita Jungle Holiday Gift Card Deal. 5340 E. Broadway Blvd. or 7090 N. Oracle Road. Spend $25 in gift cards and get $5 back in Pita Dough (a voucher for future purchases) at Pita Jungle this holiday season. The deal will be valid through Dec. 31 and is easy money to save if you are a regular customer, or a fine gift for your hummus-loving friends.
Mayfield Florist. 7181 E. Tanque Verde Road. Valentine’s Day isn’t the only holiday worth buying flowers for. Besides, on these cold and desolate winter days, a vibrant bouquet of flowers will warm someone’s heart up just as well as a cup of hot cocoa. Mayfield even has specific specials for specific occasions, and flower specials based on the local environment: Tohono Chul Sunrise, Madera Canyon Magic, Freaky Fourth Avenue and more! Currently offering 10 percent off all items.
Prickly Pear Clean. Get a jump on spring cleaning with a bit of winter cleaning! What better way to make sure someone has a great next year than by cleaning up their home during the end of this one? Prickly Pear Clean is locally owned and operated, so you can feel just as hip hiring them as you do strolling down Fourth Ave. They’re also currently offering $10 off first month’s services and/or one free month if you sign up for six months or more. pricklypearclean.com
L & M Music. If 11 pipers piping and 12 drummers drumming ain’t quite your style, head over to Lessons N’ More Music for the holiday season and take advantage of their buy-one-get-one-free deal on all strings, chords and v-picks. Or, if you’re afraid of doing things on your own (and let’s be real, who isn’t?), you buy three months of lessons and get the instrument for free! 4889 E. Speedway Blvd.