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Published on December 6th, 2011 | by Nature Humphries


Local Gift Guide: part 1: Local Color & Austin’s Music

Give Gifts with Local  Flair This Year


It can sometimes be tricky to find that perfect gift around the holidays. Some people are just hard to shop for. Some stores are just hard to handle this time of year. If you’re like me, big mega-marts and malls are really the last place I want to be. I think it must be a tinsel overload combined with the sense of pressure I get from pushy retailers.

So, I like to shop locally, in independent stores that have something a little more special to offer. This year, why not stop by some of the many local stores in Oxford? You’re bound to find that perfect gift, and there’s the added benefit of supporting your community. Small business owners have a tendency to be more personable and accommodating. Plus, they know their inventory well and will probably be able to help you in your quest for that special something.

We at The Local Voice have put together a helpful guide for some of our favorite local businesses in Oxford. There are gifts to be found on any budget, to fit any style.

this would look good on your wall


Let’s start with Oxford’s Favorite Local BusinessLocal Color. Just a few short blocks from the Square on North Lamar, Willie Wallace’s little store manages to fit an amazing variety of items within its walls. Much of the merchandise is lovingly crafted by local artists, such as gorgeous handmade wrapped stone and crystal jewelry by Jana Morrison, awesome hula-hoops by Brett Reed of Delta Made Hoops, crocheted apparel by Vera, prints by Anne Scott Barrett, or glass items by “Gus.”

groovy jewelry

Willie keeps his store well stocked with music memorabilia as well. Posters, T-shirts, patches, purses, wallets, books… the list goes on and on! There’s so much cool stuff to look at there, you might end up picking up a few things for yourself while you’re browsing.



Another store that supports local artists is Austin’s Music, over on Heritage Drive right off of West Jackson. If you have a musician on your gift list, go check out the very cool handmade guitar straps by Al Finger. They are stylish and one of a kind, so your favorite rocker will be proud to wear it. Stylish and useful, now that’s a perfect gift combo!

rock on.

Another option is Tanager Amplifiers. These are hand-built, high-quality amps by local artist Michael Maxwell. Kenneth Lacey, the owner of Austin’s Music, assured us that they sound awesome and are a big seller. Not only do they sound great, but they look nice, too.

Right now you can also take advantage of some specials at Austin’s. All acoustic entry-level guitars are on sale, and acoustic hard cases are all marked down to $59. Pair those with some guitar lessons from one of Austin’s great teachers, and you just might have a future rock star in your life! Got a seasoned pro to shop for? Try the TC Electronics pedals—buy two and get one free. Plus there are tons of picks, strings, tuners, metronomes, sheet music, and guitar slides—all of which make excellent stocking stuffers. Check out the Web site, www.austinsmusiconline.com. You just may find some coupons to boost the bang for your buck!

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About the Author

is Editor-in-Chief of The Local Voice media company. Nature is originally from Vicksburg, Mississippi, but moved to Oxford in 2004 after spending time in the United States Navy. She also worked in the restaurant industry for many years as a Server and a Bartender. Nature graduated from Ole Miss in 2007 with a degree in English and Modern Languages.

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