How to buy your holiday gifts from Black-owned businesses –

How to buy your holiday gifts from Black-owned businesses –

Esther Davidowitz

Madeline Ference

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There are many ways to support racial justice. You can educate yourself, you can donate to charities and you can write or call your representative leaders. You can also support the Black community by shopping at Black-owned businesses.

And the holiday season is the big shopping season. To stay safe, much of our holiday shopping, no doubt, will be done online. But whether you’d rather visit a brick-and-mortar store or shop from the comfort of your home, there are numerous cool stores owned by Black fellow Jersey residents who can use your support and from whom you can pick up a nice gift for family and loved ones. 

If we’ve missed your favorite, please let us know by emailing  (Shops listed without addresses are online only.)

Hipster & Co., Cedar Grove. After losing her job and becoming a new mom, Sasha Pierre needed to give herself something to do that would allow her to take care of her daughter.

She started making stuff. After her son was born, she decided to open an Etsy shop with her adorable creations: scrunchies, pouches, earrings. And, now face masks as well. Visit Facebook page.

Amber’s Bracelets Store, Jersey City. Jersey City resident Amber Vaughn offers handmade beaded bracelets and waist beads.

Indulgence Candle Co, Montclair. Artisan candles. The candles are made of beeswax infused with coconut oil. Among the choices: mimosa, lemon meringue and fresh linen.

Worth Empowering, Montclair. Erika Kendrick launched her Empower Women T-shirt business in September — during a raging pandemic. “You can’t hold off your dreams because of COVID,” said Kendrick, a Bloomfield resident who is also a therapist.

Street Chic Mobile Boutique, Boonton. This mother-daughter “retail therapy shop” offers affordable clothes and accessories primarily for women. It also has a mobile truck that goes to festivals, flea markets and home parties. 811 Main St., Boonton; 973-978-4653,

The Little Boho Bookshop, Bayonne. This independent bookstore opened on July 31, 2017 as a kids-only bookshop but within six months morphed into a general store. The reason? Parents wanted to read as well.

The shop is owned by Sandra Dear, a proud “book lover,” who worked in the book publishing industry for 15 years. 164a Broadway, Bayonne; 201-258-4499,  

Aquarian Thoughts, Newark. Nadirah Bostick, the owner of this handmade jewelry shop, is an Aquarius, according to her website, ergo the name of her shop. Every piece in the shop — earrings, bracelets, rings, bangles and cuffs — contains hand-selected gemstones and metal components blended together with an eclectic aesthetic. Each is hand crafted.

Karibe, Newark. For the cook lover on your gift list, Karibe (pronounced kari-bay), an online shop formed in 2018, offers kitchen supplies such as cast-iron skillets to stainless steel sauce pots.

Owner Vernon Williams says, “Our goal is to bring the African-Caribbean culture into households.” He notes that a lot of American food hails from Africa and the Caribbean. “Our products are for everyone,” he stressed.

LaDi, Saddle Brook. LaDi (pronounced lady) is an acronym of the designer’s first and last name: Laura Diaz. Diaz designs a line of women’s clothing and accessories, stylish maternity wear and baby gifts.

Shipping gifts this year?: Here’s a timeline for holiday shipping

Source of Knowledge Bookstore, Newark.  This African-Caribbean family-owned bookstore sells books written by and about people of African descent. 867 Broad St., Newark; 973-824-2556

Last Place Winners, Jersey City. T-shirts, hoodies and crewneck tops. 225 Monticello Ave., Jersey City; 

The Beautiful American, Jersey City.  A cool online bookseller offering used and rare book titles. 136 Hutton St., Jersey City; 917-887-8403,

Hush Lifestyle Boutique, Englewood. A well-curated boutique offering men’s and women’s clothing, accessories, sneakers, candles, and coffee table books.10 Grand Ave., Englewood; 201-503-0021,

Alta Embroidery LLC, Brick. Want your alma mater’s logo on your face mask? What about the Notorious RBG’s image on your T-shirt? Alta Embroidery can do that for you. 208 Crane Road, Brick; 732-691-3625,

DeCarlos Bespoke, Jersey City. Super gorgeous custom-made clothes for men. Also available, ready to wear garments. Also stunning. 255 Grove St., Jersey City; 201-216-0770,

Esther Davidowitz is the food editor for For more on where to dine and drink, please subscribe today and sign up for our North Jersey Eats newsletter.


Twitter: @estherdavido 

Published at Mon, 07 Dec 2020 10:03:16 +0000

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