WITH a wealth of design talent in Scotland, there’s ample opportunity to pick up an inspired gift for your nearest and dearest, and yes, even that ridiculously fussy family member. Makers, producers and designers abound so there’s even more reason to keep your shopping local, supporting and championing homegrown talent, as well as avoiding the dreaded high-street Christmas crush. Here, Rohese Devereux Taylor highlights the best goods Scotland has to offer

Our Lovely Goods
Aberdeen, www.ourlovelygoods.com
Ebi and Emmanuel Sinteh set up Our Lovely Goods after the birth of their first child. Their blends of botanicals and scents fuse to make a range of skin and hand balms, oils and candles that delight the senses, are good for you and feel delicious. The depth of scent in their candles is not often found and last as long as the glass-housed candles themselves – their Road to Port Harcourt candle is a heady mix of bergamot, vetiver and black pepper. The whipped body butters are rich but not greasy and a little bit goes a long way.


Kinsman-Blake Ceramics
The Pottery, Barn House, Smailholm, Kelso TD5 7PH, www.kinsmanblakegallery.co.uk
This family-run gallery and ceramics studio sells jewellery, art, sculpture and all permutations of pottery, all crafted by the Kinsman-Blakes. Their signature style of lovebirds adorns mugs, plates, bowls and lamps. Stocky horses sculpted from red clay, silver bangles and necklaces and prints of the local landscape as well as pots and garden art can be found in this eclectic gallery snuggling in the Scottish Borders. 

Highland Chocolatier
Grandtully, Pitlochry, PH9 0PL, www.highlandchocolatier.com
Is it even Christmas without an abundance of decadently good chocolate? And that you will find in this Perthshire chocolate haven.
Iain Burnett studied the art of chocolatiering in Belgium, Switzerland and France before setting up shop in Grandtully. He and his team use a uniquely flavoured single-origin cocoa from the volcanic island of São Tomé in the South Atlantic, selected for its exceptional range of fruity, aromatic and spicy characteristics. His range of chocolate treats are then made with unblended fresh Scottish cream from a particular herd of cows using no artificial additives or preservatives. The hot chocolate is worth the trip alone.

The Star and Heart Studio
Glasgow, www.starandheartstudio.com
Prepare to be enchanted by these whimsical ceramic pieces. Candleholders adorned with woodland creatures, fox jewellery holders and hanging ceramic plates that take inspiration from forests, the ocean, symbology and magic. Curled up cat keepsakes, delicately painted owls and seal brooches made up in small batches sell out in quick time. 


The Rookery Craft Mead
Blairgowrie, www.rookery.scot
Mead, the much-loved tipple of Vikings and monks is making a comeback thanks to Perthshire’s Rookery. A blend of fermented honey and water, mead has been drunk in Scotland for centuries, some estimates date it as far back as 5000 years. To make the drink, Christopher Mullin pours honey into a barrel with water and yeast, leaves it for six weeks to ferment and another three to settle. He mixes the liquid by hand and nothing else is added. As well as traditional mead, Rookery sells flavoured versions including lavender, spruce and mint, all using only natural ingredients.

RHA Audio
Glasgow, www.rha-audio.com
Technology company RHA Audio’s sleek wireless bluetooth earbuds, TrueConnect, give the more established audio companies a run for their money. The sweat and weather resistant model have call compatibility and a flip-carrying case that holds four charges. The company also sells wired in-ear headphones, wireless flight adaptors and accessories.


Glasgow, www.instrmnt.co.uk
Every well-dressed wrist requires an elegant timepiece and Glasgow-made Instrmnt watches are exactly that. The watches merge Swiss technologies with Scottish engineering using German leather – creating pieces that work seamlessly and look stylish. Founded by Pete Sunderland and Ross Baynham in 2014, Instrmnt includes the original watch collection that are sold unassembled with tools provided for the customer to build their own watch. Now the pair have taken on dive watches and have created a D-Series range that features a sweeping second hand, a screw down crown, Luminova markings, and a sapphire crystal case back.  

Reek Perfume 
Edinburgh, www.reekperfume.com
As a lover of perfume but not one for cloying florals, discovering Reek was joyous. Their vegan signature scents, Damn Rebel Bitches and Damn Rebel Witches, take inspiration from historical Scotswomen. These striking perfumes tap in to the strength and general badassery of the women they memorialise, evoking the spirit of rebellion and resilience. Conjured up by mother and daughter duo Sara and Molly Sheridan, Reek’s scents are blended by master perfumer Sarah McCartney using ingredients that would have been to hand during the 17th and 18th centuries, including clary sage, pink peppercorn and blood orange. 

Rare Birds Book Club
Edinburgh, www.rarebirdsbookclub.com
A subscription to the Rare Birds Book Club will satisfy even the most curious of minds. Gift subscriptions for three, six and 12 months, include a choice of two releases by women authors delivered in a perfectly wrapped package on the first of every month. The beauty of the online book club set up in 2017 is being introduced to new fiction and writers that might have otherwise passed you by. 

Edinburgh, www.buffcs.com
The nail artists at Buff, left, are outstanding. Experts in detailed work and colour manicures, the Scandi-vibe shop found in a renovated railway arch in the heart of Edinburgh also sells natural, organic, vegan skincare sourced from Copenhagen. Founded by friends Holly MacKechnie and Carly Robertson, pedicures, manicures and nail art are the order of the day in this bustling salon. New colours and designs are introduced regularly and each treatment is accompanied with a massage using essential oil-infused lotions. Gift vouchers available.


Jag Knitwear
Dundee, www.jagknitwear.com
Inspired by Scotland’s traditional knitting industry, Jag Knitwear is a sustainable fashion brand producing short runs of bags, jumpers, scarves, snoods and hats. Designer Jolene Guthrie aims to promote the Scottish knitwear market through ethical production methods and by encouraging consumers to embrace their textile heritage. Her fresh, staple pieces create modern links whilst retaining key nostalgic traditions. Some pieces can even be customised if you’re quick.

Nmarra Designs
Glasgow, www.nmarra.com
Nmarra’s earrings, above, take inspiration from ancient ruins, folk art and brutalist architecture. Designer Jen Stewart founded the business in 2017 in the hopes of making intriguing pieces at competitive prices. Made in Scotland from brass, these lightweight statement earrings are bold, interesting and affordable. Variations of hoops, studs and starburst style are sold. 

Steampunk Coffee 
North Berwick, www.steampunkcoffee.co.uk
A subscription to one of Steampunk Coffee’s packages  ensures there will be no shortage of great coffee on the go. The Essential coffee subscribers will choose from their South and Central American range, Explorers can choose from their full range of single-origin traceable coffees, while the three-month gift subscription will send a crop of African, South and Central American coffees straight to the receiver.

Outer Hebrides, www.modren.co.uk
Meaning something unusual in Gaelic, Modren makes stylish bags using Scottish tweeds. Sandra MacLeod established the business, which welcomes collaborative orders, after a career in marketing and from a family of weavers, working with fabrics came naturally. Her collection of totes, shoppers and clutch bags are sold worldwide while sticking steadfastly to their Scottish roots.

The Canny Squirrel
Paisley, www.thecannysquirrel.co.uk
Katherine Pentney’s collection includes Harris Tweed cushions, tablet cases, accessory cases and wall art which all feature her signature free motion embroidered animal designs including birds, dogs and Highland cows. So precise are her designs that people could be forgiven for thinking she embroiders with a sewing machine, but everything is hand-stitched painstakingly. Choosing to work with Harris Tweed was a conscious one so Katherine could support Scotland’s industry and other independent makers. Her work includes cushions, Ipad and glasses cases and winter decorations featuring polar bears, penguins and robins.

Hilary Grant Knitwear
Orkney, www.hilarygrant.co.uk
Orcadian knitwear designer Hilary Grant makes beautiful textiles using cruelty-free lambswool. Sumptuous blankets and throws in geometric patterns, scarves and snoods to suit every colour palette, spun and dyed in Scotland, and gloves and hats to keep you cosy are made in the Orkney design studio. The studio works with a family-run, knitwear manufacturer in the Scottish Borders to produce all of their collections from premium Geelong lambswool.

North Uist Distillery Co.
North Uist, www.northuistdistillery.com
There’s a new gin on the block that’s perfect for the grown-ups’ stocking fillers. The Downpour Sloe and Bramble gin from the North Uist Distillery Co is a reboot of their  signature Downpour gin. The spirit is infused with sloe berries and wild brambles from the island and goes down a treat warmed and served as a mulled gin cocktail.

The Tartan Blanket Co.
Edinburgh, www.tartanblanketco.com
There’s nothing more important during a Scottish winter than to stay warm. For the cosiest of blankets and scarves, The Tartan Blanket Co is your go to. Their collection, left, of stylish and coorie-worthy lambswool, cashmere and recycled wool items – and their baby blankets and gift sets – is adorable.

Burra Bears
Burra Isle, Shetland, www.burrabears.co.uk
The eminently collectible Burra teddy bears from Shetland are handcrafted from recycled Fair Isle material and come with their own name and personality. Wendy Inkster recycled a Fair Isle jumper into two bears for her sister and the business was born. Not a knitter herself, Wendy appreciates the craft that goes into every traditional Fair Isle jumper which is often so well loved that it has worn out. From them, and offcut panels from local producers, she creates her range of bears which come in three sizes and special Christmas editions are made.

Risotto Studio
Glasgow, www.risottostudio.com
Risotto, right,  is a risograph print studio specialising in vibrant T-shirts, art, stationery and calendars. Their screen-printing process is sustainable and zero waste, producing small-scale and limited edition batches. Their greetings cards and wall prints of body parts, food items and shapes are witty and eclectic and their clothing collection for kids and adults is the same. They also offer workshops for people keen to learn the craft.


Tom Pigeon
Anstruther, Fife, www.tompigeon.com
Creative studio Tom Pigeon makes prints, cushions, jewellery and stationery. Bold colours and prints are the hallmark of designers Pete and Kirsty Thomas and their covetable jewellery collections in fine metals and screen and letterpress prints and paintings are all made in Scotland.

Zing Organics
Tarbert, www.zingorganics.co.uk
Natural and cruelty-free skincare and perfume company Zing Organics was set up after founder Kirsty Morrison struggled with allergies. Now the range, based in Argyll, includes body butters, face oils, serums and cleansing masks. If you’re really feeling generous why not gift their monthly VIP hamper club which includes a hand-picked selection of treats.

Johnstone, www.mcrostie.co.uk
McRostie makes leather goods that will last lifetimes. Since 1887 the company have produced the finest belts, wallets, bags, purses and more, maintaining their exacting quality standards. Beginning as a saddler’s ironmonger, McRosties became world-renowned for their horse harnesses leading them to establishing as a saddlery and creating other leather items. The family-run firm branched out with a collection of belts in the 1980s, quickly followed by bags, sporrans and technology accessories. 

Lindean Mill Glass
Lindean Mill, Galashiels, TD1 3PE, www.lindeanmillglass.co.uk
If gorgeous glassware is your thing then stepping into the cornucopia that is Lindean Mill Glass, above, will be a treat, with handblown tumblers, wine goblets, vases, carafes and candle holders in gemstone hues. Annica Sandström and David Kaplan met, trained and worked together in Sweden before settling in the Scottish Borders. 


Lucky Cloud Skincare
Edinburgh, www.luckycloudskincare.com
Stock up on cruelty-free botanical skincare with zero nasties. Much of the vegan range is housed in glass so it’s recyclable as well as looking darn stylish. Stand out products include the Nourishing Cleansing Balm, left, lip butters and Hydrating Super Balm but, actually, everything is pretty great. The mini kits are a great way to gift the range.