December –– by this time in the semester, finals are approaching, grades are questionable and crying is casual. If school isn’t stressful enough, the transition into the new month calls for the holiday season.
The usual person is happy about this time of year because holiday breaks are forthcoming and you can practically smell the sugar cookies in the oven. But in reality, holiday season means gift season, which can add boatloads of stress when you are tight on money and have extensive family and friends.
Now, you might be sweating because gifts can add up and there’s only so many subpar items you can Amazon Prime. But, no need to fret; Blacksburg has cheap options with staple gifts that can work for anyone.
Located on North Main, t.r. collection, owned by fellow Hokie Tom Raub and his wife Michelle, is a local gift store that provides ideal gift-giving ideas for those interested in Blacksburg-related home decor, candles or appliances. The store has the perfect aesthetic that makes you feel at home while browsing through for friends and family.
“The holidays are truly magical at t.r. collection. We pride ourselves in offering a vast selection of gift ideas for everyone at every price point,” Michelle said. “Our unique Blacksburg items are always a huge hit for the holidays and serve as sweet reminders of the area. Whether it’s the perfect ornament, a yummy candle or crazy socks, t.r. collection is truly a one-stop shop for everyone on your holiday list.”
If you know a special someone who has an appreciation for clothing and art from around the world, Fringe Benefit is the perfect place to find a unique stocking stuffer. Located on North Main, the shop has been serving Hokies for 42 years.
“This gift shop has really unique and affordable things. I went just to look around and I left with perfect holiday gifts for my friends and family,” said sophomore animal science major Lindsay Payne.
From hand-carved soaps to glassware and designer clothing, you are sure to find a gift that instantly catches your eye.
Matrix Gallery Fine Crafts advertises its American-made crafts, ranging from leatherwork to blown and cast glass, as the perfect gift with the holiday season approaching.
“The selection at Matrix Gallery is so broad, and you never know what you will come out with,” said sophomore human nutrition, foods and exercise major Jaclyn Musa.
The store is quaint, but busy with a number of arts that catch your eye. Here you can find works from artisans around the United States that can be a great addition to a home.
If gift shops aren’t your scene, the Blacksburg Farmers Market attracts vendors selling handmade crafts, flowers, baked goods and more that could make for a great gift.
Located off the intersection of Draper Road and W. Roanoke Street, the square is busy with locals and vendors always looking to invite the public to take a look around most Wednesday nights and Saturday mornings.
Without breaking the bank, these options offer a range of household items and crafts that add personality to a home and complement your Christmas tree. Gifts from these places can definitely hold more meaning and sentimental value than something you could pick up from Walmart.
If you are trying to wow your friends and family this season, browse the shelves diligently and remember to be patient. Gift stores like these have such a selection of distinctive items that you are bound to experience that “Aha” moment when an item screams someone you know if you make a day of it.