Community Voices
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Crafted at the Port of Los Angeles. (photo: Facebook)

Backed-up containers at the Port have really provided an opportunity for folks to shop local this year, and with all the new shops around San Pedro, people are discovering how easy it is to find unique gifts for the people they love most. You may have missed all the ribbon cuttings and grand openings happening around town lately. Much has changed.

If you have a chance to hit the San Pedro Farmers Market on Fridays between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., you are bound to find great gifts for friends and coworkers. Candles, soaps, apparel, and gourmet ingredients are flexible presents. Which is great as you’re trying to figure out who to shop for and super handy when you receive an unexpected gift. Be sure to check out the booth with doggie treats for your favorite pet lovers! The San Pedro Farmers Market at Little Italy is located at 638 S. Beacon Street.

Crafted at the Port of Los Angeles is open from noon to 6 p.m., Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. There are over 45 shops with over 130 artists represented. You’ll want to take your time and carve out a few hours to see everything — trust me, it will be worth it. I can’t highlight all of the shops, but here are a few of my favorites. Paradise Preserves is the first shop you see as you enter Crafted. Carey McMillan takes local produce and, depending on the season, has up to 40 different flavors of jams, jellies, and marmalades. I always get at least a traditional and a spicy jam and then pester Carey for some of her famous fudge. Stop by 88kitty for soaps, scented candles, and bath bombs. They are handcrafted, vegan, and smell so good! If you have some sort of memorabilia, collector’s items, military honors, or the like that would look good framed, Get Framed by Steve is a great place to showcase items. My wife, Sara, loves succulents. Both Inside Outside Unique Designs and Succulents by Sue offer succulents in unique containers. Adewole Arts features handmade pottery that you can buy, or even better, sign up for a class to make your own with a loved one. You can create art, laughs, and memories even more special than the gift itself. There are so many other shops within Crafted where you’ll find jewelry, art, home décor, and collectibles. 

The San Pedro Art Association is back at Crafted for the holidays and features the work of over 40 artists. Remember to take your time and finish things off with a beer at Brouwerij West, across the plaza.

Weymouth Corners features two of my favorite shops. Rok ‘n’ Ell is a baby boutique located at 1438 8th Street. Carolina Brown, the owner, has stocked up on Christmas items in addition to the rare, funny, and unique baby gifts she is known for. Fleur De Lys, Artistry in Flowers is a few doors away on the corner at 720 S. Weymouth Ave. This isn’t your average florist shop. Let Nova or Lee know what you want and they will create the “Wow!” floral art for your home or event. Be sure to check out the 35th Annual Weymouth Corners, Candy Cane Lane on Friday December 3 from 5 to 9 p.m.

Downtown San Pedro has the newest shops, especially for fashion, home décor, and San Pedro gear. I recommend you park in the lot near Siren’s Java & Tea so you can get a “road latte.” Be sure to check out Rustic Charm & Petals and also H.Den Design. They are on either side of Siren’s and offer unique items you can’t find anywhere else. If you buy tickets to San Pedro City Ballet’s The Nutcracker performances between December 10 and 12, you can shop before or after. Otherwise, most of the shops are open Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays between noon and 6 p.m. There are a few interesting shops including The Coastline Shop, The Zen Den, and Rootz Uncharted on 6th Street. Spend some time on 6th and 7th walking between Pacific and Centre, paying attention to all the new restaurants. There may be at least one that you may not know existed, and now is a great time to try it out and make plans to come back to visit the others.

San Pedro Today is sponsoring a Holiday Boutique at The Corner Store on December 11 and 12 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. with live music, artists, makers, bakers, and more. The address is 1118 W. 37th Street. Also, don’t forget to check out all of the new shops along Pacific Ave. People are raving about all the new boutiques. When you spend local, it stays local — support San Pedro businesses! spt

Lee Williams

Lee Williams leads the Williams Group at Keller Williams Realty and is a member of the Board of Directors for the San Pedro Chamber of Commerce and the Boys and Girls Club for L.A. Harbor.