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The 12 Stores of Christmas (and Hanukkah, and Everything Else)

Where to shop locally on the East End this Holiday Season

Have you been naughty? Have you been nice? Well, it doesn’t really matter. With so much great local shopping in the Hamptons, we’ll give it a pass, just this once. Instead of rushing out on Black Friday to the nearest box stores to see what sales are launching, help support the East End’s local businesses by shopping at some of our homegrown spots instead. From jewelry to home décor to gourmet food to boutique wine options, the South Fork has everything you need and more for the ones you love. So, in honor of the 12 days of Christmas, we’ve curated 12 of our favorite stores for you to explore out east this holiday season. 

If you’re shopping for a special woman in your life, head directly to Sag Harbor’s Matriark, a woman-owned luxury retailer that supports women and LGBTQIA+-owned brands. The store sells everything from clothing to accessories to beauty items to pieces of home décor. Pick up the Halston Color Block Poncho (Parrish LA, $398), or the equally fashionable No. 33 Cashmere Sweater (Leret Leret, $475). Sloane Stationery’s notebooks, which come in different letters of the alphabet, are great for practically anyone on your gift-giving list. 

While you’re in the neighborhood, swing by Black Swan Antiques, undoubtedly one of the best places on the East End to find something unexpected, like a tortoise shell on a stand, an antique map, or a pair of terra cotta federal eagles. For the artist in your life? An antique drafting table from the 1930s. For the homeowner-collector who seemingly has everything? Perhaps a Hubley Manufacturing Company cast-iron doorstop in the shape of a dog, made in 1915. 

Still stumped for ideas? Lynda Sylvester’s Sylvester & Co. (also in Sag Harbor) is a great spot to pop into if you’re stuck. A general store with a hipster vibe, the store sells everything from outerwear to games to home goods. A sky-blue backgammon set, covered in ostrich leather and retailing for $169, feels like the kind of luxury gift that someone on your holiday list deserves, post-haste. John & Kira’s nine-pack of decadent chocolate bees, handcrafted chocolates filled with caramelized honey from the Draper Family Apiaries in Millerton, Pennsylvania, is just one of the unique gifts you might stumble into in this perfectly gift-worthy local oasis. 

To the east: vintage clothing and jewelry for the young-at-heart can be found at Montauk’s Wyld Blue. It may be hard to narrow down the choices, with so many cool curated selections from proprietor Sasha Benz. The gold Josie Jumpsuit ($530) may not be for the faint of heart, but it is surely a gift to remember. The store also specializes in vintage haute couture. You can find, for instance, a pair of hammered Chanel Deux Earrings from 1991 ($1,800), a classic Gucci Bottle Necklace ($1,100), and Tiffany Graduated Loop Earrings in sterling silver ($1,650). 

Shop for the well-heeled gentleman at East Hampton’s Nili Lotan. The Alan Fair Isle Sweater ($950) will transport him to the green cliffs of Ireland, no matter the season out east. If the gent in your life considers the 90s an era of inspiration, gift him the Jordan Catalano-cool Heath Jacket ($1,895), a tumbled corduroy piece insulated with soft, luxe shearling. 

Across the street, stock up on everything you need to please the book obsessives in your life at BookHampton, the hamlet’s independent bookstore, where you can find everything from books by local authors to national bestsellers (and coffee table books for design connoisseurs). Pick up a visually centered book, like former White House photographer Pete Souza’s newest book The West Wing and Beyond: What I Saw Inside the Presidency, or an East End-centric novel like Mark Mills’ bestseller Amagansett. Or pick up a copy of Judi Barrett’s 1978 classic, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, for the young reader who is always in need of a new book. 

If your “to-gift” list includes a friend or family member who is in love with design and home goods, head straight to Hildreth’s Home Goods, in Southampton, the general store that opened in 1842. Hildreth’s is a go-to for a bit of Hamptons timelessness. Pick up a set of Catstudio’s Hamptons tumblers, perfect for gifting to your favorite entertainer. At Homenature, find gorgeous, sculptural gifts, like Georg Jensen candleholders, wooden trays and bowls, and handcrafted cutting boards.  

If you’re on the hunt for bespoke gifts for the food and wine lover, there are plenty of excellent small businesses to choose from on the East End, too. In Sag Harbor, Michael Cavaniola’s exceptional ode to cheese and gourmet foods, Cavaniola’s Gourmet, can arrange personalized gift baskets that can cater to individual palates. In addition to cheese, the store boasts everything from a curated selection of olives, pates, and jams to home goods, like cutting boards, knives, and linens. 

L & W Market, in Bridgehampton, offers playful takes on classic baked goods, which are fun for gifting (pop tarts, Rice Krispie treats, and other goodies are regular on offer), and the store is always stocked with chef Jason Weiner’s line of canned items, which are also great for gifting. The store sells everything from Weiner’s citrus-cured olives to his homemade kimchi. You can make your own creative gift basket, or ask the friendly staff for their recommendations for what’s best (and don’t be shy about grabbing a baked good or two for yourself — or even a frozen mac and cheese for the road). 

Head to East Hampton next, where, at Domaine Franey, you can complete your magnificent arrangement with the wine or sparkler of your choice, like a festive bottle of the 2021 Cleto Chiarli Lambrusco Grasparossa di Castelvetro Vigneto Enrico Cialdini. Or, opt for a high-quality bottle for that oenophile friend whom you know will appreciate it. The 2016 Claude Dugat Gevrey-Chambertin is an excellent and cellar-worthy pick for the holidays. If you find yourself west instead, head directly to Southampton’s Herbert and Rist on Job’s Lane, and don’t be shy about that magnum of Veuve Clicquot. It’s the holidays, after all.