Shop (locally) ‘til you Drop: Show Cleveland some love this holiday season

It’s no secret that Clevelanders love their city, but what about the people that keep our hometown pride alive? Give back to CLE’s finest stores and artists this year by shopping locally. Whether you’re buying jewelry for your significant other or sports gear for your dad, look no further than your own backyard.

<span class="content-image-text">Océanne owner Anne Harrill</span>Océanne owner Anne HarrillOcéanne
Originally from France, Anne Harrill brought European flair to Cleveland when she opened Océanne’s doors in 2017. She sells a wide range of gifts, ranging from handmade jewelry to hometown apparel. While she takes pride in her authentic pieces, Anne is especially proud of her “Empowered Women Empower Women” clothing line.

In fact, she released a “Hear Me Roar” sweatshirt earlier in 2021 and thinks it will be popular this holiday season. 

“My ‘Empowered Women’ line has received a lot of support because people can relate to it,” Harrill says. “Women have a lot of weight to bear, and my apparel highlights how much we’re capable of.”

In addition, Harrill has built strong relationships with artists and vendors she’s met at local art shows and markets in other Midwestern cities. She works closely with them to keep her shop stocked. Harrill has nothing but love for our city. “I’m so thankful for the support I’ve received in Cleveland,” she says. “Make sure to shop small and early this year!”

<span class="content-image-text">Brothers Greg and George Vlosich repping their shirts with Cleveland baseball players.</span>Brothers Greg and George Vlosich repping their shirts with Cleveland baseball players.GV Art and Design
When it comes to Cleveland pride, no one does it better than GV Art and Design. Brothers Greg and George Vlosich originally started their “Cleveland that I Love” line back in 2008, and their overwhelming success was a shock to many.

“When we first started our own line of Cleveland shirts, a lot of people were skeptical,” says Greg. “For years, Cleveland has been the underdog city and the butt of every joke. Our shirts really bring people together and highlight our city pride.”

Artists in their own right, Greg and George create each t-shirt design. In addition to their apparel, the brothers are also known for their etch-a-sketch art, which has been featured on “Oprah,” “Jimmy Kimmel” and other notable news outlets.

While they re-released their holiday line late last month, they’re having plenty of ongoing Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales you don’t want to miss. In addition to their iconic sports apparel, plenty of ornaments, winter gear, and festive t-shirts will be available. A purchase from GV artwork will make a great gift for any diehard Cleveland fan, sports or otherwise.

<span class="content-image-text">Photographer Dan Morgan’s vintage film holders, available online and holiday pop-ups later this month.</span>Photographer Dan Morgan’s vintage film holders, available online and holiday pop-ups later this month.Straight Shooter
Trying to find a special gift for the Cleveland historian in your life? Check out photographer Dan Morgan’s work at the ArtCraft Open Studio Show & Sale this Friday, Dec. 3 through Sunday, Dec. 5 and Walkabout Tremont on Friday, Dec. 10.

For over 30 years, Morgan has been a commissioned photographer for the city of Cleveland. He’s most known for his work on the Guardians of Traffic, a beloved landmark in our city. He's taken countless iconic pictures that will make a great addition to any Clevelander’s home.

“I’ve been taking pictures of Cleveland since the early ‘80s,” he says. “Part of my skill is capturing our city from a unique point of view that’s hard to recreate.”

At these events, shoppers can purchase Morgan’s vintage film of Cleveland landmarks. Considering he has no practical use for the film anymore, he repurposes it as picture frames priced anywhere from $25 to $50.

<span class="content-image-text">Cuyahoga Collective’s Lakewood storefront</span>Cuyahoga Collective’s Lakewood storefrontCuyahoga Collective
Located in the heart of Lakewood, Cuyahoga Collective keeps home at the forefront of their store—primarily sourcing their products from Ohio and other parts of the Midwest. Since opening their doors in 2016, owner Adam Taseff has prided himself in creating a positive customer experience. Shoppers are encouraged to stop in, say hello and enjoy a cup of coffee on the couch.

Considering the store has a “home living room” concept, comfort is definitely a priority.

If you stop to visit, you’ll find something for everyone on your Christmas list. From Cleveland apparel, handmade candles, and unique artsy pieces—it’s hard to leave empty-handed. Not to mention, each item is hand selected by Taseff, so quality is never an issue.

“We have a huge variety of stock, and we source most of it locally,” says store manager Elisabeth Corrigan. “We sell coffee from local vendors, candles from Cleveland makers and even socks from Columbus. Some of our proceeds also go to different nonprofits, like the [Department of] Veteran Affairs and MudLOVE.”

<span class="content-image-text">In the 216</span>In the 216In the 216
Want to shop local, but can’t stand the hustle and bustle of the holiday season? In the 216 has you covered. Owner Jenny Goe opened her Coventry store back in 2015, then expanded to Lakewood two years later.

Once COVID19 hit last year, Goe moved her store completely online—a great option for shoppers who are out of state or prefer to stay in the comfort of their own homes. Plus, considering she sources her products exclusively from Ohio, you’ll still support our small businesses.

“The importance of shopping locally really escapes people,” says Goe. “If you’re ever in a walkabout city, take the time to check out its small shops. The people running them are doing everything they can to keep their doors open. These purchases help the surrounding community too—because nobody wants an empty storefront.”

Goe has connections with over 100 artists in Ohio, most of whom live in Northeast Ohio. She sells a wide range of gifts, including home decor, Cleveland apparel, and handmade jewelry.

Originally a jewelry maker (her creations are for sale at In the 216) and salesperson, Goe has a keen eye for artisanship. After noticing the many talented artists and gift makers in our city, she decided to expand her stock. You can check out In the 216 online and at various pop-up shops this month, including the Beaty Merry Show today, Wednesday, Dec. 1 and Thursday, Dec. 2; the Bavarian Christkindlmarkt at German Central in Parma on Saturday, Dec. 3; at Jingle Bell Rock & Shop at Grog Shop and B Side Lounge on Saturday, Dec. 11; and Cle Market at the West Side Irish American Club in Olmsted Township, Friday through Sunday. Dec 17-20. 

<span class="content-image-text">Heights Arts holiday store for shoppers</span>Heights Arts holiday store for shoppers

Heights Arts
If you’re looking for a unique, one-of-a-kind gift this year, check out Heights Arts’ annual holiday store. The nonprofit organization has enriched the Cleveland Heights area with literary, visual, and performing arts since 2000.

Countless pieces of unique artwork will be available for purchase the entire month of December. Over 100 artists will be represented, and the entire gallery will transform into an artistic display case.

Guardians to keep watch
The Guardians of Transportation, the huge, winged figures of the Assyrian Kings, have imparted their magical power of protection over the motorists of the city and have kept watch over Cleveland from the entrance ways of the Hope Memorial Bridge since 1932.

The originals were designed by architect Frank Walker and sculptured by Henry Hering of New York, more than 20 years ago, FreshWater managing photographer and artist first made a 15-inch sculpture of one of the pair of Guardians of Traffic and had them cast in solid hydrostone with a sandstone finish.

Perkoski has been selling them out of his home studio in Parma ever since that first sculpture. Now that our baseball team is names the Cleveland Guardians, these sculptures are taking flight. Get yours from Perkoski. Pick up in Parma, near I-480 and the Ridge Road or Tiedeman Road exits. Call, text, or email Perkoski at (216) 952-03206.

Not only will your gift mean something to the receiver, but also to the artist who created it. More often than not, purchases made at the Heights Arts Gallery give local creators recognition and credibility in their craft.

This is only a small sampling of the many holiday arts and crafts shows happening in Northeast Ohio this season.

While you exchange gifts with your loved ones this year, give back to our city in the process. Whether you’re a Cleveland native or recently moved to the Land, do our local artists and businesses a favor by shopping small. 

Dana Shugrue
Dana Shugrue

About the Author: Dana Shugrue

Dana Shugrue is a graduate of John Carroll University, where she earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Digital Media and Professional Writing. She is a full-time Content Specialist at Budget Dumpster, and part-time freelance writer for FreshWater Cleveland. When she’s not writing, you can catch Dana taking a run through the metros or sipping a latte at her favorite local coffee shop.