Why We Love Living In Seattle: Holiday Happenings that Illuminate Our City

The excitement and enchantment of the holiday season is wonderful, but let’s be honest: it can be a very expensive time of year, leaving very little funds for entertainment. The good news is several of the best holiday traditions in Seattle are free of charge! We have compiled a list of special places to visit during the month of December with fun for kids of all ages.

Winterfest at Seattle Center
Through Jan 1, 2018
Enjoy holiday lights, folk dancers, carolers, dancers, ice sculptors, model trains, and entertainment.

Swansons Nursery Reindeer Festival
Through Dec 24, 2017
Swansons Nursery, 9701 15th Ave NW, Seattle, WA
Shop for gifts and even pick up your tree while the kids are entertained by the model train village, live music, photos with Santa and meet Santa’s Reindeer; Dasher and Blitzen.

Sheraton Hotel Seattle Gingerbread Village
Through Jan 1, 2018
City Centre, 1420 Fifth Ave, Ste. 450, Seattle, WA
An astonishing display of artistry and architecture and loads of fun for all ages. *Admission is free, but donations gladly accepted for Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

Teddy Bear Suite
Through Dec 26, 2017 and open on Christmas Day!
Fairmont Olympic Hotel, 411 University St, Seattle, WA
Brimming with Teddy Bears and lavish décor, one of the hotel’s biggest suites is magically transformed into a teddy bear wonderland for kids and parents to enjoy, and the perfect place for some family photos.
*Admission is free, but donations gladly accepted for uncompensated care at Seattle Children’s Hospital.

 

Housewarming Gifts for Seattleites

In a scene from Frank Capra’s 1946 film, “It’s A Wonderful Life,” Mary And George Bailey (Donna Reed and Jimmy Stewart) welcome the Martini family to their new home with three symbolic gifts and a brief, heartfelt speech. “Bread, that this house may never know hunger,” they say. “Salt, that life may always have flavor. And wine, that joy and prosperity may reign forever.” It’s just a tiny scene, but it captures a universal moment. Giving a gift to new neighbors or close friends who have moved is a custom that spans centuries and cultures.

When the Pilgrims settled at Plymouth, Wampanoag Indians brought them much-needed deer meat and beaver skins. In the case of new neighbors, gift giving is a simple way to establish good relations. And for friends who have moved, a housewarming gift is an important show of support during what can be a stressful time.

To update the traditional housewarming present and make it a little more personal, we have created a list of Seattle “must-haves” that are sure to impress and make their new Seattle home feel very warm.

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Loaf of bread from Grand Central Bakery

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Sugar from Old Salt Merchants

 

San Juan Salt Co

Salt from San Juan Salt Company

 

Queen anne olive oil

Incredible olive oil from Queen Anne Olive Oil

 

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A charming flour sack towel from City People’s Mercantile

 

 

 

Unique Furniture Stores of Seattle

Buy local and find those one-of-a-kind pieces you’ll never see anywhere else.

Looking to add some pomp and flare to your dwelling? Yearning for a unique piece to tie the room together? Look no further. Each of the stores on this list are small, independently curated boutiques, perfect for finding one-of-a-kind furnishings, vintage pieces, and home goods with a distinctly Seattle flair.

Adorn

This is a store with a super-stylish perspective. Adorn is a great place to find something unique for your home. The staff is well known for its friendly attitude and the always charming Rocco, the shop dog.

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Unique Find: Temporary wallpaper in uber-stylish prints

Ballard Consignment

This is a store with a super-stylish perspective. You’ll find an impeccably curated inventory of eclectic vintage furnishings and art.

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Unique Find: Warthog Taxidermy Mounted Head

Camelion Design

In addition to an amazing array of furniture styles and a seemingly endless selection of fabrics, it’s also a boutique housewares store full of goodies. You’ll discover gifts for everyone in their offerings of serving ware, candles, furniture, art, accessories, and gifts for baby.

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Unique Find: Modern furniture that doesn’t compromise comfort for style

Capers

Let your Seattle pride shine at this West Seattle home and lifestyle shop. Featuring the work of local, independent, and eco-friendly artists and craftspeople, Capers is a great spot to pick up a beautiful new cookbook that also serves as a coffee table book.

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Unique Find: Coated outdoor linens that are chic and functional with really stylish textile patterns

Digs

This Market Street staple has an exuberant mix of art, furniture, and craft; boosting a healthy mix of mid-century and contemporary pieces with a generous dose of whimsy.

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Unique Find: Life size cow sculptures

Fremont Vintage Mall

A basement full of furniture, art, and accessories could be considered the mother of all vintage stores. Spending a couple of hours browsing here is like shopping an entire antique district. Each visit will reveal new things. From the roaring ’20s to midcentury, this gallery isn’t stuck in a particular decade.

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Unique Find: 1950’s metal carnival clown baseball toss game

Phase Two Interiors

Gigi Buchanan opened Phase Two as an art, décor and furniture shop for gently used home furnishings that are worthy of a second life span, in a new home. The showroom has a large and varied selection spanning many different design styles.

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Unique Find: Scooter the shop dog apparently has great taste and is happy to help you find the perfect throw pillow

Second Use

The ultimate store for a hardcore scavenger; going to Second Use feels like being at a 100 yard sales under one roof. From old lumber, vintage cabinet pulls, and fun retro lighting options to modern appliances, unused doors and large stock piles of unused wood flooring options; they literally have it all.

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Unique Find: Antique Pine Winnowing Table used to separate the wheat from the chaff – great for a side table