You can really stand out when wearing something unique. Whether you're shopping for a gift or for yourself, handmade is the way to go. No more worrying that your recipient already has the same item or that you'll bump into someone wearing the same thing. And also, a handmade accessory really shows off your sense of style and supports a local artisan instead of a big box store or retailer. Let your fashionable side shine through with a handmade accessory from one of these great Boston locales.
If shopping local, supporting area artists and wanting the biggest selection possible are your goals, check out Boston Handmade. This organization brings together and supports the best of area artisans. On its website you can find a full directory of artists and where to find their work. Even better, the group hosts several shows throughout the year that bring together goods made by members in one place for your shopping convenience.
South End Open Market
460 Harrison Ave.
Boston, MA 02118
There's no way to get around it. If you're talking handmade anything in Boston, the South End Open Market has to be mentioned. More affectionately known as SoWa, the South End Open Market is a Boston landmark. It brings together artists and crafters from Boston and beyond to connect with shoppers in a fun open-air market setting. Every week there's a new mix of goods, artists and fun. This summer, the SoWa Market will feature some of the best accessory makers in the greater Boston area including jewelry with an industrial theme from Lush Beads and hand-painted shoes by Melissa Thyden.
40 Waltham St.
Boston, MA 02118
When Megan and Moira took their first jewelry class, they had no idea that years down the road they'd be among Boston's most sought-after accessory designers. Their vintage-inspired designs and reworked antique pieces are fun, flirty and great conversation starters. Besides being carried in several local boutiques, the sisters behind M. Flynn have their own shop on Waltham Street. They even offer custom designs so you can be sure to get exactly what you want if you already have something in mind.
416 Highland Ave.
Somerville, MA 02144
Magpie exists somewhere in between an art gallery and a quirky gift shop, which means it's pretty much the perfect place to shop. While not everything it carries is handmade, there are enough non-factory-created goods to earn it a place on this list. And everything it carries definitely counts as unique. Magpie's eclectic selection and wide variety of price points make it a great place for just about any shopper to browse.
2 Dartmouth St.
Boston, MA 02116
When you hear handmade accessories, your mind probably goes right to jewelry. And you can certainly find plenty of that at Gifted. But you can also find a whole slew of other accessories that you'll love just as much. Handbags and scarves line the shelves for women, and if you're looking for something a little more manly, the shop also has watches, ties and cufflinks. The shop is curated and run by local artist Marie Corcoran and her wonderful sense of style is found in each and every piece.
Renee Mallett is the author of several books about art, culture, and New England. She was the owner and director of an art gallery and has written about arts and entertainment on a national level for several print and online journals. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.
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