The North East of England is full of small; and independent businesses. So here is a Christmas gift guide with products from my favourite North East small and local businesses.

At this time of year I always like to do what I can to support these businesses because if we don’t use them, we will simply lose them. I have bought products from many of these businesses and can say they are worth your money.

No doubt I have forgotten some amazing ones so I will continue to add to this over the coming weeks!

As always, if you enjoy this kind of content and want to see more then drop your email into the box below.


The North East is absolutely bursting with talented artists right now! (Who knew?!) So here are just a few of my favourites.

Faye Greenman Art

Faye Greenman is one incredibly talented artist who I genuinely think will be HUGE in a few years. Her aim as an artist has always been to inspire others to pick up a pen, pencil or brush and create something. Not long ago she held her first art show which went down as a great success. I can’t wait to continue following her artistic journey and see her bloom.

As for her artwork itself, it’s very much my style. It might not be for everyone, but I do love it. My favourite piece of hers was actually a leather jacket she decorated. It has now sold, but one day I hope to own something similar!

Her original artwork is slightly on the more expensive side of this list, but luckily she does create prints of those pieces which are more affordable so everyone can enjoy her art.

You can shop her artwork on her website, or see what other pieces she has ongoing over on her Instagram.


If you are a proper mackem, you will know all about the amazing artwork from Kathryn Robertson. She is the artist behind a lot of the Vaux brewery pint glasses and the mural within the pub itself. My favourite piece of hers is the Sunderland print:

She does also have a lot more prints and postcards available for sale. Visit her website, or Instagram to have a look at the other pieces she has.

Meg Gardner Art

An incredibly talented Northeast-based artist who sells some beautiful paintings. I’ve followed her for a little while now and do plan on buying some custom artwork from her very soon. My absolute favourites are the ones painted on wood slices. You really should check out her Instagram and her website to see the incredible pieces she creates!

Gavin Hall Design

If you are after some North East-inspired prints, or some from further afield, then you should have a look at Gavin Hall. Some of his pieces are incredible, and I am very tempted to buy a few for myself!!

Gavin Hall Prints at The Lookout, Seaham

Some of his most popular are currently on display at The Lookout cafe in Seaham so you should have a pop down to view them. Or you can shop from his website and his Instagram.

Christmas Cards

Personally, I absolutely love sending Christmas cards. I know a lot of people don’t bother anymore or have opted for more environmentally conscious ways to send festive greetings. but I just love writing my cards out! As far as local Christmas cards go, I did actually struggle to find a load of places so if you know of any more, do drop them in the comment or send me a message so I can get them added on!

The Posh Paper Co

The Posh Paper Co is a Sunderland-based stationery company with many great designs across various products. This Christmas Laura has created some wonderful Christmas cards. As well as ones you can colour in yourself (or get the kids to do it), letters from Santa, thank you cards and more!

Visit the Posh Paper Co’s Instagram

Fiona Mullen Studio

Fiona is an incredibly talented artist and some of her prints are on display in both Grinder coffee shops. But this year she has released some epic Christmas cards. All of these are available to purchase from the coffee shops.

Mackem Cards

If you’re looking for a couple of funny cards to gift people, then look no further than Mackem Cards. This one had me chuckling for ages!

They have a load more cards on their website, as well as other mackem-inspired bits and pieces.


For the crafty people in your life, here are the best places to get some gifts for them while also supporting great North East businesses!

Trouvaille Stitch Kits

Jennifer from Trouvaille has been one of the people who has supported my blog for a long time which is always appreciated! And I have done my best to support her business although I am useless at stitching.

But her stitch kits are amazing ways for someone to get into crafting while creating something absolutely stunning. Her kits all include all the thread, needles and everything else you will need to stitch some of the most iconic landmarks of the North East!

You can find her kits at the For the love of the North store at the Spanish City in Whitley Bay, or visit her Instagram and Website to browse all her kits!

Lucy Locket Land

Lucy Locket Land is a store located in Seaburn which is absolutely jammed packed with every possible crafty thing you could need. And the website they have has even more amazing things available! From knitting kits to handmade mugs she has it all.

The shop itself is open Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday 10am-4pm or you can visit her Instagram and Website to see what she has.

Food and Drink

We are Cookie Freaks

For the best cookies in the North East it has to be We Are Cookie Freaks. I first discovered the brand during Lockdown when they were sold in Grinder Coffee. But now, they have an amazing shop at Team Valley and are regulars at Tynemouth Market. I am very tempted to order one of their cookie platters for Christmas, but I know it would be eaten before then!!

You can also order their products through their website but give their Instagram a follow for updates too!

Northumbrian Gifts

This website is a fantastic place to get all the locally crafted beers and ales, ciders and spirits. If you are looking for some alcohol-based gifts but want something that is more special, this is the place to go. I have to mention that the Holy Island Spiced Rum they have is delicious – as a none rum drinker!!

You can order through their website or browse the products they sell on Instagram.

Northumberland Fudge

Who doesn’t love Fudge?!

Northumberland Fudge always looks absolutely delicious although I am yet to try it! Their Christmas gift boxes are made up of delicious and unique flavours of fudge all made in Northumberland. For the sweet tooths in your life, this is a must.

You can order through their website and give their Instagram a follow to see what else they create!


Any proper Mackems will know all about Vaux. The revived brand has a great taproom over the water near Big Tescos. But if you don’t want to venture over there, you could always order some of the beers, or gift them for your mackem mates.

Have a look on their website, browse their Instagram, and go and visit the pub too!

Wax Melts

I love using wax melts and usually have one burning most nights!

Sweet Serenity

For the wax melt fans, this is the only thing you need! Sweet Serentities Christmas range of Wax Melts are utterly incredible. I will never go anywhere else for wax melts from now on. Especially the gingerbread one is my favourite, I ordered extras.

You can order through their Instagram or their website.

North East Inspired

I know most of this post is just North East Inspired, but this section is all the small businesses that don’t fit into any of the above categories.

For the love of the north

For the love of the North is my absolute favourite shop in the entire world. It sells knick-knacks, memorabilia, cards, posters and craft kits from various creatives from the North East. One of my favourite pieces from them is their annual calendar which is a collection of artwork from different artists depicting icons from the region.

They have a shop in the Spanish City at Whitley Bay which you can visit, or you can have a look on their Instagram or shop their Website.

A City by the Sea

A city by the sea is a local company that sells lots of amazing things that celebrate the Northeast. They have lots of really pretty prints, clothing and accessories. I especially love their Roker Pier print, and the mustard yellow ‘love where you live’ backpack!

You can browse their website, or follow their Instagram.

I hope you have found something on this list that you found helpful. I will continue to add to this list in the run-up to Christmas so it might be worth clicking back to see if anywhere else has been added. I will also be creating more Christmas guides in the coming days so keep an eye out for those!

As always, feel free to drop your email into the box below to be notified of any and all my upcoming posts and feel free to follow my other social media down there too for more ongoing!

Stay Safe and Merry Christmas!

Want to feature on Mackemlife? Whether it be here on my blog, Facebook Page or Instagram, I am always looking for new businesses to work with. If you are interested, make sure to have a look at my Work With Me page and get in contact with me!


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