Handcrafted and locally-made, these Saratoga County gems will inspire even the toughest on your list.

It’s that time of year again when our minds and our wallets are preoccupied with gift-giving, and an overwhelming need to find the perfect gift for our bosses/babysitters/in-laws/neighbors/longtime friends…

As daunting a task as this may seem, Saratoga County residents don’t have to venture far beyond the 12866 to find fantastic, high-quality, locally-made products that demonstrate great taste, without breaking the bank. Read on to find out what’s at the top of our (local) wish list this year, and how you can win one of these treasures to give or keep (details at bottom of post)!

Lather Bar Soap Company

Handcrafted, mineral-rich soap made with local Saratoga water is an easy way to extend a bit of luxury to a hard-working mom, busy father-in-law or jet-setting bestie. With options ranging from Lavender Fields and South Pacific Sea Salt, to Balsam Cedar and Chardonnay, you can literally find something for everyone.

Their beer-infused collaborations with the likes of Olde Saratoga Brewing Co. and Lake Placid Pub & Brewery are so out-of-the-box, they will make even the most challenging loved one on your list swoon.

Consider building your own gift set with a few of their handmade chapsticks and bath bombs, or book a soap-making class ($40), then design your own brew and make seven bars to gift! Stop by their studio/shop on Broadway to purchase or visit the Lather Bar website.

Razimus Jewelry

Each piece is lovingly handmade from vintage and recycled fabrics, and the end result is a sustainable, eco-conscious approach to jewelry that’s anything but ordinary. Owner Virginia Fretto believes in upcycling, and chooses pieces that are in line with fashion trends and color palettes—so even if you’re wearing a piece crafted from a vintage item, it still feels fresh.

Designed to be stacked, consider packaging two or three together to give a lovely lady some real arm candy worth bragging about. Or choose one of their buffalo plaid styles for that hipster gent in your life. Available online, as well as at Lifestyles of Saratoga and the National Racing Museum & Hall of Fame.

Check out our interview with Virginia, from earlier this year, to learn more about Razimus.

GTS Clothing

A photo posted by GTS clothing (@gtsclothing) on

Greater Than Sports offers body-friendly athletic wear infused with a comfortable, “casual street style,” which is exactly what people want these days.

Each piece is made to order in fashion-forward styles which incorporate mesh, reflective prints, and patches of sheen, making them as perfect for the yoga studio as they are for a day running errands, or even a Christmas Day hike. Smart accessories like hats, tees, and tanks make ideal stocking stuffers.

Designed and made under the same roof in Ballston Spa, each piece is truly local from start-to-finish. Available online at the GTS website.

Death Wish Coffee Co.

Thanks to a genius Viking-inspired ad during last year’s Super Bowl, the entire nation is downing Death Wish, but locals can get it at the place where it all began: Saratoga Coffee Traders.

Known for being the world’s strongest coffee, Death Wish offers beans by the pound as well as K-cups, plus tons of great merchandise to make you look as cool as you’ll feel.

Stop by their Round Lake Headquarters, any local Price Chopper, Saratoga Coffee Traders or Healthy Living Market & Cafe in Wilton to purchase, or go online and visit the Death Wish Coffee website.

Upstate Distilling Company

A bottle of Ryen’s Rye or Blinders Vodka will bring a smile to any booze-lover on your list. Upstate Distilling Company spirits are made with real Saratoga water, at the first distillery to open in the Spa City since prohibition, and are already gaining attention well outside of Saratoga County.

Think big and pair a bottle with a set of glasses… then ask to be invited over for a tasting. You can pick up a bottle while visiting the distillery, after your tour and tasting of course, or at Purdy’s Discount Liquor Store.

If you enjoy local spirits as much as we do, take a look at our adult Advent Calendar.

Saratoga Chocolate Company

These homemade truffles, bars and barks will make your mouth water, so be sure to grab a few for safe-keeping (i.e. yourself). You can even step outside the box with their cocoas, which come in bold flavors like Mayan Spice and Orange Cinnamon. You’ve heard by now that it’s going to be a snow-laden, frostbitten winter, and quality drinking chocolate is sure to help you make it through.

Pick them up at Romas, Putnam Market, Iron Roost or Fortunate Cup, or shop online in your pajamas by visiting the Saratoga Chocolate Company website.

Holiday Giveaways

Want to win one of these great local gifts? Make sure you’re following Explore Saratoga and these makers on Facebook and Instagram. We announced six different opportunities to win… one each day, from Monday, December 12th through Saturday, December 17th.

MONDAY: One Soap Making Class from Lather Bar Soap Company ($40 value).

TUESDAY: The Janelle Bracelet by Raziumus Jewelry ($58 value)

WEDNESDAY: Dark Chocolate Lovers Collection from Saratoga Chocolate Co. ($18 value)

THURSDAY: Bottle of Ryen’s Rye Whiskey from Upstate Distilling Company. ($48 value)

FRIDAY: One lb of Death Wish Coffee plus their 2017 Ceramic Mug ($55 value)

SATURDAY: $100 Gift Card from Greater Than Sports ($100 value)

Winners will be selected at random and announced on Christmas Day! You can enter to win one item or all six and you can enter on both Facebook and Instagram to increase your chance of winning. Be sure to share with your friends/family so they can enter to win too. Good luck!!

Happy Holidays!