Finding the perfect gift isn't easy, whether it's for a loved one or for your kid's teacher, for a birthday or for your company's Secret Santa gift exchange. Use this Guide to the Top 10 Places to Shop for Gifts in Vancouver to find unique gifts for any and every occasion.
1. Paper-Ya on Granville Island
One of my favourite stores on Granville Island and one of the best places to shop for gifts in Vancouver is the paper arts shop Paper-Ya, a dream for crafty paper artists, card-makers or anyone who loves blank books. Paper-Ya sells decorative and natural papers, bookbinding materials, journals, and out-of-the-ordinary cards and invitations, all of which make lovely presents.
The Original Paper-Ya Co Ltd.
#9 - 1666 Johnston Street
2. Meinhardt in South Granville
When it comes to buying gifts for people you don't know well, food can be a great way to go. The first time I met my Brazilian in-laws, I gave them a gourmet Pacific Northwest food basket, and they loved the smoked salmon and Chukar Cherries. If you can afford to splurge, Meinhardt has the best gourmet gift boxes, ranging from all sweets to B.C. cheeses to English favourites. Or, create your own gourmet gift by hunting their aisles for the perfect combination of flavours.
3002 Granville Street
3. Wonderbucks on Commercial Drive
A Vancouver original, Wonderbucks carries "world bazaar"-style home decor, kitchen gadgets, housewares, plants, and bath accessories at discount prices, making it easy to find inexpensive, gender-neutral gifts for any occasion (e.g., for Office Secret Santa). It's definitely one of the best places to shop for gifts in Vancouver on a budget. Wonderbucks has two locations in Vancouver: one on W Broadway and one on Commercial Drive.
1803 Commercial Drive
4. The Comicshop on W 4th Ave
Located in Kitsilano, the Comicshop is the place to shop for that super-hero-loving, graphic-novel-reading, uber sci-fi/fantasy fan on your list. Looking for pop culture posters or Captain America action figures? They've got both, and more.
3518 W 4th Avenue
5. Peking Lounge in Chinatown
I have a true love of Chinatown's Peking Lounge, a fabulous mix of high-quality antique furniture and gorgeous contemporary Chinese home-decor. Since nearly everyone in Vancouver has at least a dash of Asian flavour in their home decor, it's hard to go wrong with a "China Chic" gift. If I have to buy a wedding gift for an unregistered couple, I always look here first.
83 E Pender Street
6. Oscar's Art Books in South Granville
Located in fashionable South Granville, Oscar's Art Books is a local favourite, for good reason: Not only are the books discounted, they cover a wider range of art subjects than you can imagine, from painting to film production, photography, fashion, interior design, logos and graphic art, and even tattoos. Perfect gifts for book lovers, art lovers, erotic art lovers, and hipsters.
Oscar's Art Books
1533 W Broadway
7. Front & Company on Main Street
One of the best places to shop for gifts in Vancouver is Front & Company on Main Street. Front & Company has two parts: a used and new clothing shop and a gift shop. And, man, their gift shop is packed to the rafters with fun finds: everything from novelty items and gag gifts to home decor, porcelain, collectibles, and adorable baby gifts.
Front & Company
550 Main Street
8. Buchan's Kerrisdale Stationary in Kerrisdale Village
9. Artisan SakeMaker on Granville Island
Granville Island is one of the best places to shop for gifts in Vancouver, and, along with the aforementioned Paper-Ya, Artisan SakeMaker is one my favourites. This unique winery produces award winning, hand-made, small batch and fresh sake that makes a fabulous gift.
1339 Railspur Alley
10. Urban Planet at Metrotown
Like H&M but even cheaper (and way cheaper than Zara), Urban Planet has all the latest clothing and accessory trends for both genders, making it easy--and very budget-friendly--to load up on the latest styles or on inexpensive gifts like fashion jewelry, scarves, belts, and purses. If you're shopping for a teen who wants quantity over quality (I had a friend in high school who refused to wear the same thing twice), this is your store.
Metropolis at Metrotown Mall