South Guadalupe Street and Sanbusco Market Center near downtown. Unless noted, all hours for stores listed in Sanbusco Market Center are: Mon.-Sat. 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Sun. noon-5 p.m..
By Amy Dalness
Big Star Books
Big Star Books
329 Garfield Street • (505) 820-STAR Hours: Every day 10 a.m.-7 p.m.
Walking among the whitewashed bookshelves of the converted house that is now Big Star Books feels more like perusing a historic library. Shelves of pre-loved volumes neatly organized by topic make the selection process effortless, and you never know what you'll stumble upon since Big Star buys out libraries and collections. There were a few classic Choose Your Own Adventure books on the shelves not long ago—nostalgic stocking stuffers, anyone?
Rio Bravo Trading Co.
411 South Guadalupe • (505) 982-0230 Hours: Every day 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
This is where the real cowboys come to play dress-up. Cowboy hats, leather chaps, replica (and vintage) rifles, holsters, boots, lasso rope—the list goes on. For the cowpoke with everything, check out the collection of Old West badges for sale, like the polished silver U.S. Marshal badge sure to make any history buff holler with glee.
No matter the style of your loved one's kitchen, Mindy & Clyde has something fabulous to add some pizzazz to it. Give a vintage tablecloth or a complete table setting in impeccable condition. Or shop for sturdy, colorful Fiestaware or a delicate porcelain tea set while humming along to the Andrews Sisters' song playing on store loudspeakers. You’ll score some choice foodie gifts.
The Wild Cedar
405 South Guadalupe • (505) 795-8589 Hours: Every day 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
No joke, Wild Cedar has the best deal on candles this side of the Mississippi. Hand dipped by the women who will greet you as you walk in, the candles have the rounded, natural look of handmade (not perfect sticks like you’ll find at the grocery store). Pick from a variety of natural colors and scents, and a range of sizes to match any style or home décor.
Vintage clothes aren't something you'd buy for everyone, but at least one person you know would love something flashy from the ’20s. Or maybe you have a jewelry lover on your list? You'll be sure to get her a piece unlike anything else in her collection from Double Take, and prices are within every spending bracket. For him, why not try a classic sweater or one-of-a-kind belt buckle? Just let your imagination run wild.
The sign outside Bodhi Bazaar says everything it needs to about the store within: “devoted to women.” While you may need to stretch your budget to shop in this store, a high-fashion item (like a skull and crossbones T-shirt by Scanty) is almost assuredly a slam dunk. Opt for an accessory or gift certificate as a fashion-safe alternative. No clothes-loving women in her right mind would find a shopping spree at Bodhi Bazaar financed by someone else a thoughtless gift.
Fishermen come in all shapes, sizes and genders, and so do the flies they use to snag a big catch. The Reel Life staff knows flies (even hand ties a good number of the ones in the store) and can easily set you up with a tackle box to warm any fisher's heart—which will hopefully lead to a full stomach for you. The Reel Life also has a large selection of outdoor gear for any nature lover, including bug-repellent sun hats. Opens at 8 a.m. weekdays.
If the words "functional art" seem like an oxymoron to you, you haven't spent enough time with high-quality pens. The writing utensils at Santa Fe Pens are much more than functional—they're inspired. Ranging in price from the teens to the thousands, everyone can have a little piece of art for their pocket or desk.
This store doesn't sell the cookie-cutter toys you'll find at big-box vendors—it's full of mind-bending, experience-enhancing playthings boys and girls of all ages will LOVE. That's L-O-V-E in capital letters, they're so good. An enthusiastic Science Toy Magic team member will always be out front demonstrating one of the store’s awesome items, including 26 toys found on its shelves in Santa Fe before anywhere else in America.
Dogs love presents, too, last-minute or not. Teca Tu has exceptional gifts for dogs and the people who love them, including gourmet treats (like Bark Vineyard fine wine for dogs—alcohol-free of course), collars (a whole wall of 'em) and hand-made, sterling silver santos to keep your furry family member safe (amen!). Gifts for two-legged creatures also available.
Knock girly girls off your list with one stop at Wink. Bath goods, hair products, spa certificates, home adornments and more are ideal for the über-girly to the closet femme. Even though you're shopping last-minute, take a few extra seconds to browse Wink for some fun, high-quality gifts at really reasonable prices.