Fishing guide

Shopping Santa Barbara Gift Guide 2021


Shopping in Santa Barbara
2021 gift guide

Our annual rundown of places and items to buy this holiday season

By Gareth Kelly

Strawberries from Lu | Credit: Courtesy

With the pandemic lingering and global supply chain issues, our 2021 Holiday Gift Guide is an even bigger tool in your festive shopping arsenal. After another tough year on top of the last, local shopping remains as important as ever and offers the added benefit of not suffering from backorders or delayed delivery issues.

With firm favorites, as well as new offerings, spread across Santa Barbara County, our handy guide aims to give you gift ideas, get you in the spirit of giving and receiving, and maybe even distract yourself from the constant chaos that seems to surround us.

Good luck and don’t forget to take advantage!


State Street

Game Seeker is a one stop shop for all things confusing and entertaining. | Credit: Courtesy

Start your festive shopping on rejuvenated State Street. Visit the Diani Lifestyle store for personalized sage packets, candles, restorative floral bath housewares and an abundance of chic modern clothing. Stop by Punch Vintage, which serves up a cornucopia of original and fabulous vintage goods, from mid-century modern lamps to funky outfits and outrageous heels. Enter Anthropologie and marvel at its impressive selection of women’s clothing and household items. Their Capri Blue candle and Fir & Firewood jar holiday candles are a must-have for the season. Find one-of-a-kind home furnishings at Habitat Home & Garden before heading out to the global market for this global selection of beers or festive gift wrap and stationery. Pick up some of the latest board games and more at Game Seeker, a one-stop-shop for all things confusing and entertaining. Remember your furry companion and help a good cause at Cat Therapy, which sells fancy t-shirts and hoodies, or just stop by the cat cafe for furry hugs.

Side streets

More than Marvel and DC, the world of comics and Metro Entertainment are full of heroes and villains that all ages can go on adventures with. Take a role play and help Grandpa become Gandalf! Now capturing our pandemic home-bound hearts and minds, Idyll Mercantile is the perfect place to search for houseplants, plant-inspired jewelry, and party cards, as well as lotions and oils. Lotus Boutique features small artists alongside sustainable, fair trade products, from crystals and shoes to jewelry, and has something to pique your interest.

Cat Therapy sells fancy t-shirts and hoodies. | Credit: Courtesy

All of Santa Barbara heaved a collective sigh of relief when the store formerly known as C’est Cheese reopened in the Presidio neighborhood as Cheese Shop SB, our community’s home for brie, salumi and all the gourmet foods we know and love. Blessed either wine this year and blessed be wine retail at Renegade Wines on East Haley Street, with a wine list for the discerning palate. Exemplary customer service and a wide choice require a visit to the Meritage Wine Market on Anapamu, whose knowledgeable staff can offer tips to wow your in-laws.

More than just an Italian breakfast, lunch and retail outlet, stock up on small bites, pastas, meats, cheeses and negronis at Olio Bottega on West Victoria Street before popping into the Santa Barbara Society for find local Californian produce and a high live gift.

Arcada Square

Historical figures, dolphin statues, and living turtles can all watch you stroll through La Arcada Plaza, but don’t forget your purpose. Hit Ace Rivington for sustainable denim, Lewis & Clark for this Bodleian Library and Renaissance Fine Consignment note card set for affordable Chanel, Gucci and more. Art lovers will find plenty to collect at the Santa Barbara Art Association and Gallery 113. Finish with artisanal wine and artisanal appetizers from Barbieri & Kempe Wines to complete your getaway to the square.

El Paseo and Paseo Nuevo

Since 1965, Bryant & Sons jewelers have connected lovebirds and created lasting memories in their store. Venture across the street into Paseo Nuevo to find the Santa Barbara Outdoor Christmas Market, offering a wide selection of artisan gifts such as soaps, dolls, and jewelry.


The eclectic range of stores in our Funk Zone appeal to all tastes. There are three floors of modern and vintage furniture at The Blue Door, while around the corner, The Shopkeepers has a plethora of accessories to wear when you lounge by the fireside this season. If you’re still struggling to come up with ideas, simply wander around Dylan Star’s awesome new location for that personal touch while shopping for chic yarns. Treat yourself to a self-care Sunday with smudge packs, loungewear or a holy gift box at Sirena. And no holiday season is complete without a trip to Cutler’s Artisan Spirits, which offers cocktail consumables, glassware, and hand sanitizer to ward off the pesky pandemic.

Treat yourself to a sacred gift box at Sirena. | Credit: Courtesy

On Stearns Wharf grab a few bottles or maybe a membership for a loved one – or yourself – to Deep Sea Winery before taking the Little Toot Water taxi to the Santa Barbara Fish Market, the best place to get all your Santa Barbara canals United, lobster and crab. Descend the launch pad to the Santa Barbara Sailing Center to rent a luxury motor yacht, small sailboat, or purchase a ticket for a Double dolphin sunset cruise or SUP rental. Navigate to the SB Arts & Crafts Show along Cabrillo Boulevard, where manufacturers sell their own products. It’s every Sunday, but also Saturday, December 18. Back in town, head to the Beach House on State Street for this family surfer to find the latest boards and even rentals if you feel like shredding the gnar.


A visit to A Crimson Holiday at La Cumbre Plaza is the place to find handcrafted gifts from artisans in Santa Barbara, including Hot Cherry pillows by J’Nelle Holland, bowls spun by Chris Hansen, and items hand-knitted children’s hat by Royanna Robertson. Head to Bristol Farms for a fantastic section of cheeses from around the world, cold cuts and delicious baked goods. At the end of the street in Loreto Plaza, lose yourself in the book-lined walls of Chaucer’s Books, reading about who, when and with whom.


The Rosewood Miramar Beach offers a decidedly upscale shopping experience with an expanded selection of stores including Italian designer Brunello Cucinelli, California-inspired concept store James Perse at The Gatehouse and Goop Sundries, founded by Gwyneth Paltrow.

A perennial favorite, Upstairs at Pierre Lafond offers luxury bedding and home furnishings, while downstairs you can find wine and cheese and artwork by artists Karen Bezuidenhout and Liz Brady, and plenty of all Wendy Foster. At Imagine Artful Things, browse Sunlit Studio’s eclectic 1,000-piece watercolor puzzles by artist Robin St. Louis, fine art prints and more.


Find that classic vinyl, an original collector’s item, or maybe Native American jewelry at Old Town Antiques. Keep riding at Bicycle Bob’s for all your traditional road or mountain biking needs, or check out their extensive inventory of e-bikes. Stop at Terra Sol off Patterson Avenue and stroll through their incredible selection of plants, fountains, gargoyles, fairies, terra cotta pottery, and everything garden related.


Find gifts for him, like a Bradley Mountain utility roller or a Patagonia fisherman’s hat, at Heritage Goods and Supply as well as ladies’ clothing and even Moo Moo the Cow for the little ones. Swing by Susan Willis Ltd. for an assortment of charming gifts, from food to fabrics, all wrapped free of charge.


Begin your stay in Summerland with a relaxing getaway behind the walls of the Sacred Space, where crystals, wordstones, perfumes, teas, and exotic furniture are all in abundance. Once you’ve reached nirvana, head to The Porch to experience the fireplaces, interior design, and art for your indoor / outdoor living spaces before visiting the cornucopia of beautiful orchids on offer at Westerlay Orchids.


Catch artistic jewelry inspired by Red Tail Jewelry while sipping a glass of sauvignon blanc in the Refugio Ranch tasting room in Los Olivos on December 4, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Danish-inspired village of Solvang is a vacation hotspot, with over 150 unique shops offering a wide range of Danish goodies. Channel the inner child at ONEderChild with books, a DIY talking head doll kit, or maybe a unicorn pop-it pouch before stopping at Ingeborg Danish Chocolates to pick up marzipan, jams and jellies.


Museums have struggled during the pandemic. What better way to support these vital parts of our community than to visit their gift shops? Start with MOXI’s newly redesigned gift shop, home to all of your STEM toys, such as Lite Brite and Magna Tiles, plus books, crafting kits, and more. Then step back in time at the Santa Barbara Historical Museum for freebies that highlight Santa Barbara’s rich history. Become one with nature or the sea at the Santa Barbara Natural History Museum. Remember art matters at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art as you purchase personalized jewelry, books, toys, and merchandise. Finally, take a drive down the back roads of Lotusland for delicate silks, opulent coffee table books, art supplies, and more in one of the world’s best gardens.


Check out the oversized calendars, jigsaw puzzles and offshore clothing from world-renowned yacht photographer and Santa Barbara resident Sharon Green at Ultimate Sailing or tickle your taste buds with delicious, decadent and finely decorated strawberries from Lu’s Strawberries, only on Instagram . Pick up a Cabrillo Crowd Pleaser or the new Virtual Happy Hour Santa Claws box from the folks at Santa Barbara Gift Baskets or check out Katie Lovelace’s psychedelic honey, biodegradable swim and sportswear to inspire the well-being of women in the world. land to sea.


Change up your gifts this year with a visit to a local dispensary. Stop by Coastal to browse their wide selection of cannabis flowers, pre-rolls, and even wine. Head to One Plant in Goleta for edibles or concentrates, or walk down Mission Street to Farmacy for tinctures or topicals. Are you looking for locally grown? Try Wellfounded Botanicals, which produces CBD scents and THC tinctures, as well as enhanced herbal body balms and facial oils.