Melbourne is home to the Australian arts, challenging conventions and providing creative spaces for individuals to get crafty in every part of the city. It only makes sense that Melbourne is also home to some of the finest gift shops, with unique collections that appeal to all styles and tastes. If you want to get a sense of the talent and beauty that can be found in Melbourne, check out the locally sourced goods at these incredible Melbourne gift shops. While each of these gift shops in Melbourne is unique in its own right, the owners have a commonality in becoming a business owner through the love of craft and local artists. Here are some of our favourites!
Think Thornbury, Thornbury
I had the pleasure of meeting Maggie from Thornbury Local in 2020, after having a long-term love affair with the beautiful Think Thornbury Instagram page. The store sells gifts for children and adults, with familiar brands on the shelves but mostly you will find goods from local makers. At various points, I have bought a beautiful jigsaw puzzle, an Ottolenghi cookbook, a children’s book, a set of mugs, a children’s hat and some playing cards.
Think Thornbury is the perfect gift shop in Melbourne for any recipient and they have unique wrapping paper, packaging embellishments and cards to accompany your gift. On a recent trip to the Thornbury gift shop, I bought some gifts wrapped beautifully and adorned with origami hearts.
Few scenes are more iconic than the crap that sits parked on Degraves Street in Melbourne CBD. This orange Vespa belongs to Clementine’s Melbourne gift store which offers a very eclectic collection of homewares, trinkets and locally sourced crafts and gifts. What we love about this store is that it has a quality selection of food, more specifically sauces, seasonings, chutneys and dark chocolate. These items make a great gift for colleagues, friends and family that you do not want to break the bank with or if you are looking for extras.
The handmade toys have also garnered quite a cult following, with the patchwork bears, koalas and lions the perfect addition to nursery decor. Also, keep your eyes peeled for chocolate tastings and complementary wrapping stations in-store and out the front on Degraves Street.
Pascoe Tales, Pascoe Vale
I first noticed Pascoe Tales when I drove down Sussex Street and was blown away by the incredible window display. After a little more research and Instagram stalking, I saw that these window displays would change from time to time, each of them hinting toward the one-of-a-kind goodies inside. The owner of the store is a lovely lady who is responsible for crafting many of the items for sale, but there is still a great mix of other items from local makers and even more recognisable eco-friendly brands. I stopped by Pascoe Tales before a first birthday party and bought a set of bowls for a baby in a stunning blue colour made from quality materials. I also picked up a handmade toy, both of which were popped in a gift bag with some origami attached.
If you can’t make it to the Pascoe Vale address, the website is very easy to navigate with lots of categories so you can quickly identify whether your gift needs are being met. Although we recommend buying in person if only to experience the window displays!
Dymocks Art of Giving, Melbourne CBD
We are noticing a theme here that many of these gift shops in Melbourne are found when they are stumbled upon, which is certainly the case for Dymocks Art of Giving. This store can be found in the same building as Dymocks but is upstairs and almost hidden behind the escalators and signage of the Collins234 building. The gift shop in Melbourne is small but there is a lot packed into this store. We bought some Secret Santa gifts here and it’s a great place to try if you are looking for a nice gift that doesn’t cost too much. We settled in a beautiful leather-wrapped flask with some line art embossed in the letter.
There is also the option to have your gifts gift-wrapped which can be helpful if you work in the city and you are getting this gift on a lunch break. Plus, while you are there you may as well head downstairs and see what is on offer in the Dymocks store which has great gift items at the counter.
Present Story, Coburg
Present Story is owned and operated by a retail veteran Linda Whiteside, who had successfully designed retail spaces before, only to open her own store and delight all who enter. You will find a fun collection of gifts at Present Store for any occasion and price mark, whether you walk away with a unique mug or a decorative homeware item. There is also a nice mix of kid’s and adult gifts that will make you vow to never shop for gifts at Kmart ever again. Present Story in Coburg really practises what they preach, and makes a considered effort to stock locally produced goods that are also environmentally ethical. From Tuesday to Friday, the store is open until 6pm which is a godsend if you need a gift on a tight turnaround.
The Boroughs, Brunswick East (now online only)
The Boroughs is a well-known presence in the Brunswick area and has been actively supporting local makers since 2007 when owners Alasdair and Eddy opened the store. In 2022, The Boroughs store was closed due to the couple moving away, but they still have a studio space where they create, store and ship goods. Alasdair is a marketer and designer and Eddy is an artist, so you can expect to see a perfectly curated selection of gifts, including clothing, skincare, prints, artwork, chocolate, ceramics and homewares. The Boroughs team are often travelling and exploring new products for the store so check back often!
Which of these gift shops in Melbourne have you visited, and what do you often walk away with? We will keep adding to the list as new stores open up around Melbourne, so be sure to subscribe to our email list to stay informed on where our Around Melbourne team head next.