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A Guide to Christmas Shopping in Oxford

Rebecca Miller

Christmas is creeping closer and closer, and if you've left your Christmas shopping to the last minute, it's time to get your (ice) skates on. Luckily, Oxford is packed with places to get into the shopping spirit, including plenty of off-the-beaten-tracks independent shops and artsy destinations where you can pick up something hand-made and unique. Here are our top stops for a spot of Christmas shopping in Oxford…


DemiJohn

Proudly awarding itself the title of “world's first liquid deli”, DemiJohn began life in Edinburgh before opening branches in Glasgow, York and Oxford. These days their shop on Little Clarendon Street is a staple for Oxford locals to pick up unusual (and delicious) presents. Here you'll find a range of artisan liquors and spirits sold in elegant re-useable glass bottles. For those who don’t drink alcohol, there are cordials, coffee, oils, vinegars and dressings as well as jams, chutneys and sauces. Why not select one of their special winter cocktail concoctions and add a personalised message to the bottle to create the perfect Christmas gift?

DemiJohn is at 20 Little Clarendon Street, OX1 2HP.


Fudge Kitchen

Need something to soak up the booze from DemiJohn? How about some delicious fudge from the wonderful Fudge Kitchen… Step inside this sweet-smelling shop and enter a whole new world of indulgent treats including festive novelties like mince pie or black forest gateaux fudge as well as gift boxes, fudge sauces, and even drinking fudge (once you’ve tried this, you’ll never go back to hot chocolate!) Ask the friendly staff for a couple of samples so you can try before you buy to make sure you choose the perfect flavour to gift this Christmas.

Photo Credit: Kristina D.C. Hoeppner.

Find Fudge Kitchen at 5 Broad Street, OX1 3AJ.


Podarok

A quaint little gift shop on the High Street, Podarok is packed with great present ideas including clothing, homewares and Christmas decorations. Many of the items on sale are handmade by British craftspeople, so you’ve got a good chance of finding something really special here. They'll be getting in a whole load of one-off and handmade items in advance of Christmas, so make sure you take a look.

Podarok is at 55 High Street, OX1 4AS.


Oxford Christmas Market

Every year, the quaint chalets of Oxford Christmas Market add a bucketload of charm to the already picture-perfect streets of Oxford city centre. In 2016 the market will run 8 - 18 December, with exhibitors selling lots of lovely presents including locally-sourced food, hand-made Christmas decorations, jewellery, pottery, accessories, candles and more. On top of that, a selection of food and drink stalls will help you keep your energy levels up. Treat yourself to a mulled wine or hot churro while you browse for a more indulgent Christmas shopping experience!

Photo Credit: jackiesjottings

Oxford Christmas Market will be taking place 8 – 18 December in the city centre.


Illyria Pottery

Jericho is always worth a wander around if you’re looking for independent shops for your Christmas shopping, so give yourself plenty of time to mooch around its pretty streets on your way to Illyria Pottery on Walton Street. Artist Katie Coston handmakes the gorgeous pottery pieces on sale here including a beautiful selection of mugs, bowls, plant pots and jugs as well as handmade Christmas decorations perfect for tucking into a stocking or hanging on the tree.

Find Illyria Pottery at 104 Walton Street, OX2 6EB.


Modern Art Oxford

Take a break from the shopping with a visit to Modern Art Oxford, a haven of calm and stunning modern artworks in the city centre. Then step to the gift shop to stock up on some beautifully designed presents with an artsy twist. They've got stationery, jewellery and greeting cards in the shop, as well as beautiful items inspired by the work on display in the gallery itself.

Photo Credit: Adam Jelinek.

Modern Art Oxford resides at 30 Pembroke Street, OX1 1BP.


Burrows and Hare

How could we talk about Christmas Shopping in Oxford without mentioning the Covered Market? This beautiful Oxford institution is full of bustling shoppers and festive cheer over December, with locals flocking to its fab independent shops to stock up on stocking fillers. We recommend you head to Burrows and Hare to find a brilliant range of gifts for the discerning gentlemen in your life including snappy clothes, accessories, gifts, books, skincare and more. While the price tags here might be slightly higher than the high-street equivalent, you’re paying for real quality and a gift from Burrows and Hare will make the recipient very happy indeed.

Burrows and Hare is in the Covered Market, Oxford, OX1 3DU. See their website for further details of their location and products.


You’ll need to head out of the city centre towards Cowley to reach Gilt & Grain - but we promise it’s worthwhile! An unpretentious treasure trove of antique furniture and vintage items, this is a brilliant place to find gifts for anyone with a taste for the retro or unusual. While their main stock is furniture, Gilt & Grain also sell knick-knacks of all sorts plus mirrors, lamps and ornaments at extremely affordable prices.

Gilt & Grain sits at 135 Hollow Way, Oxford, OX4 2NE

Where are your favourite places in Oxford to buy gifts? Let us know in the comments section below!

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