East Passyunk Avenue is a popular shopping destination year-round and holidays are no exception. Whether your loved ones are interested in music, sweets or art, the variety of businesses along the avenue makes shopping easy. We rounded up four stores to check out for gifts this year.
Beautiful World Syndicate
For music-lovers and hipsters alike, Beautiful World Syndicate is the only record store on East Passyunk Avenue. Ian Gallway (above), a small partner in the business who runs day-to-day operations, said the store is a popular date destination year-round.
“With Tinder now, people come in here to meet up for dates,” he said. “They’ll stand at the listening station and show each other their favorite records.”
Most of the store’s records are used, but they also sell new releases, so couples can find their new favorite album or listen to classic love songs.
This East Passyunk boutique/gallery hybrid houses ceramics, jewelry, clothing, prints and accessories handmade by artists and crafters. Employee Katie Nocella (above) said the shop carries cards, jewelry, bath bombs, candles and mugs that will all make great gifts. For guys, the shop also sells shaving sets with handmade wooden shaving bowls and beard oil from the Urban Cabin Soap Co., established in Philadelphia in 2014. If you’re a last-minute shopper, you may even get to meet some of the artists themselves. The shop hosts art openings with refreshments and meet-and-greets every second Saturday of the month.
This craft beer market (above) adds fun to the holidays by hosting a gift basket raffle for customers and decorating for the event.
For example, one of the most recent holidays — Valentine’s Day — held a few surprises.
“It’s certainly decorated for lovers,” said Damon Marlier, who helps run the store. “And we can definitely show you a love-themed beer if you want.”
One of those beers is, of course, Yards Love Stout.
Proceeds from the Feb. 14 basket were donated to the American Diabetes Association. And for those without someone nearby to celebrate a holiday with? Don’t worry — The Bottle Shop is dog-friendly.
After launching his first collection of watches through Kickstarter, a crowdfunding platform, Lorenzo Buffa (above) opened Analog Watch Co. in the neighborhood he loves: South Philly.
“Watches are a really great gift item and our watches are at a good price point,” he said.
Analog Watch Co. offers wood and marble watches as well as other accessories like sunglasses, wood wallets and floral rings.
“We are a boutique focused on handcrafted accessories where we aim to elevate the natural material,” he said.
Buffa said couples often purchase his watches for their fifth wedding anniversaries — the wood anniversary.
— Text and images by Savannah Pukanecz and Erin Moran.