Our local independent stores are full of items that you might not find anywhere else so give them a try. Here’s some of the best independent shops from across the country

Glickman’s Confectionery, Glasgow

157 London Road, Glasgow

Open Wednesday-Sunday, 10am-5pm

0141 552 0880

The oldest sweet shop in Glasgow, Glickman’s has been operating since 1903- when electricity was a relatively new phenomenon, refrigerators didn’t yet exist and Edward VII was on the throne. A lot has changed in the intervening 117 years, but Glickman’s is still using the same recipes and hand-making their confectionery using traditional copper pots. Their collection of macaroons, frying pan lollies, tablet, candy balls and mint cream prove incredibly popular with both locals and tourists alike, with an online shop available for anyone who can’t make it into the store before the most popular items get snapped up. The founder's granddaughter, Irene Glickman, now runs the business with her daughter Julie Birkett and they offer a warm Glasgow welcome to all.


Hamish Munro, Aberdeen

19-25 Thistle St, Aberdeen

Open Monday-Saturday, 9am-5,30pm and Sunday 12pm-5pm

01224 641388

Shoe-lovers, this store is for you. Family-run boutique Hamish Munro specialises in ladies’ accessories, particularly shoes, with a selection that encompasses trainers, loafers, boots and high heels as well as a complimentary stretching service to ensure the perfect fit. If you don’t live locally then don’t fear, the team set up their very own website (www.something-for-me.co.uk) which offers free delivery on all the items available in-store. And it has proved popular: the Aberdeenshire-based business now boasts customers from as far away as Mongolia and Chile.

ALC, Edinburgh

61 Thistle Street, Edinburgh

Open Monday-Saturday, 10am-6pm

0131 226 2317

Named after the initials of its founder -Adele Louise Crombie- this boutique is one of the most stylish in Edinburgh. Denim is a key focus, with Adele aiming remove the stresses of shopping for denim and the difficulties that women experience when trying to find the perfect pair of jeans. Her team bring together the best denim brands and styles and will offer customers honest advice and support to help find their perfect pair. It’s not just about denim, either, as ALC has a range of elegant womenswear and accessories to help create a sleek capsule wardrobe that will make you the envy of your peers. Check out their Facebook and Instagram page for some extra style inspiration.


Made in Stirling, Stirling

44 King Street, Stirling

Open Monday-Saturday, 11am-5pm

01786 357550

Stirling’s city centre has been dampened somewhat by empty shops and store closures in recent years. Thankfully, Made in Stirling is breathing life back into the high street, through its collection of artwork, gifts and accessories made by local designers. As a not-for-profit they reinvest the money spent back into the local community, with lead curator Paul Jenkins moving back to the area from London with high hopes of rejuvenating Stirling’s retail scene. “I want this to be a destination store,” he explains. “I think people have cottoned on to the fact that they can shop local, it doesn’t need to be ‘craft’, it doesn’t need to be wooly or covered in pipe cleaners!”


Iolla, Glasgow

1313 Argyle Street, Finnieston (also showrooms in Glasgow city centre and in Edinburgh)


Open every day, 10am-6pm (until 7pm on Thursdays and 5pm on Sundays)

In a short space of time this store has become a bit of a phenomenon. It offers glasses-wearers a whole host of stylish frames, plus lenses, for a universal price of £75 for a single prescription. This includes thinner lenses at no extra cost, as well as anti-glare and anti-scratch coatings, with all manufacturing done in a sustainable way. Iolla’s trendy showrooms are pleasant to be in thanks to their genuinely lovely staff and -best of all- they welcome dogs with open arms and a fair few free treats.


Nae-sae-new, Prestwick

151a Main Street, Prestwick, Ayrshire

Open Wednesday and Thursday, 9am-4.30pm and Friday and Saturday, 9am-5pm

07736 460070

With some high streets at risk of becoming carbon copies of one another, we need all the individual and unusual shops we can get. Thankfully, Nae-sae-new offers an emporium of unique antiques and collectables that you won’t get anywhere else. Owner Gary Donis brings in new stock on a weekly basis -with photos of the new arrivals posted on the store’s Facebook page- meaning that customers can visit again and again without getting bored.

In House Chocolates, Castle Douglas

128 King St, Castle Douglas, Dumfries and Galloway

Open Monday- Saturday, 10am-4pm

01556 503037

With 65 chocolate flavours to choose from, each one handmade by the team at In House, chocoholics will be in heaven at this store. If you are looking to get a gift for someone else, then some In House chocolates are sure to impress: their lead chocolatier Gillian Warden is an alumni of the Edinburgh School of Art, meaning that her products look almost as good as they taste. There is also a chocolate delivery service on offer for those who can’t make it in store. Simply choose some chocolates from the extensive In House menu, tell them your delivery address and then wait for happiness to arrive.


Aitken’s Wine Warehouse, Dundee

Hawkhill Court, Mid Wynd, Dundee

Open Monday-Saturday, 10am-6pm

01382 641111

Forget just picking up whichever wine is on offer in the supermarket. Aitken’s has been curating a mammoth collection of quality wine since back in 1874, when the original James Aitken became a wine merchant in Dundee. The team now source and buy bottles from every wine-making region around the world, talking face-to-face with the winemakers to ensure that their customers are getting the very best quality and choice that’s available. It isn’t just wine, either, with Aitken’s selling an array of craft beers, spirits and champagne in both their city-centre store and extensive online shop.


The Olde Christmas Shoppe, Helensburgh

75 West Clyde St, Helensburgh, Argyll and Bute

Open Thursday-Sunday, 10.30am-5.30pm

01436 670873

They say that Christmas gets earlier and earlier every year. But at this quirky Helensburgh store, Christmas carries on for the whole year round. The Olde Christmas Shoppe offers an abundance of fairy lights, decorations, wreaths, nativity scenes, candles, stockings and festive centrepieces, bringing out a bit of festive joy among even the Scrooges among us. And if you are looking for something a bit different for your tree this year, there’s a range of Scottish-themed Christmas decorations: including bagpiper baubles, tartan stockings and decorations that are hand-painted with images of famous Scottish landmarks. One word of warning though- after a visit here you may well find yourself humming Christmas songs for the rest of the day.


Isle of Skye Soap Company, Skye

Somerled Square, Portree, Skye

Open Monday-Saturday, 10am-4pm

01478 611350


There has been plenty of talk about soap in recent months. But if you want to pamper your hands with hand-crafted, colouring-free soap, look no further than the Isle of Skye Soap Company, offering an array of plant-based soaps, bath bombs and aromatherapy oils. Perfect for Christmas, they also offer luxury gift boxes that come in natural bleached wood and include a personalised gift message, which the store will post to an address of your choice anywhere in the world.