Holiday Gift Guide: Five budget-friendly stores for local and authentic products



Nothing ushers in the holidays like the familiar sight of thrift markets and Christmas bazaars - havens for bargain-loving Filipinos looking to keep to their budget. But be warned, the price advantage may come at the (higher) cost of your health and safety. 


These markets may have booths selling pirated and counterfeit goods, many of which are likely to be uncertified and unsafe. 


Thankfully, local brands are on the rise now, selling budget-friendly, standards-compliant, and non-infringing goods. Take a look at these five stores offering uniquely crafted goods of Filipino entrepreneurs.



  1. Go Lokal! Concept Stores



Photo: Go Lokal! |


A program spearheaded by IPOPHL’s mother agency, the Department of Trade and Industry, the Go Lokal! Stores bring together innovative and high-quality Philippine products produced by micro,small, and medium enterprises. These stores are found in retail spaces in major malls, and are considered by DTI as a market access platform to help MSMEs gain equal footing with bigger retailers, at less cost.



2. Papemelroti



Photo: Papemelroti |


A favorite gift shop for paper-based quirkiness since the early 2000s, Papemelroti has withstood the competition from the numerous craft stores catering to the growing young, creative community in the Philippines. 



3. Ritual PH


Photo: Ritual PH |


Ritual PH is an eco-friendly apothecary / organic food store in Makati, and has gained quite a following due to its support of sustainable shopping. Among the products Ritual PH features are coconut sugar, bagoong, and jam (all sourced from small-scale farmers ) as well as fragrant salts and  essential oils. As a true believer of sustainable living and no-plastic policy, Ritual PH encourages shoppers to bring their own containers.



4. Common Room 


Photo: Common Room |


The arts and crafts boom in recent years has given birth to the likes of Common Room, a retailing avenue for local artists’ creative works. Going beyond mere stationary, Common Room features a wide range of hand-crafted and originally designed items by at least 30 brand partners such as origami earrings, sticker sets, gift wrappers, post cards, and calligraphy kits.



5. Roots Katipunan


Photo: Roots Katipunan |


A truly millennial concept store, Roots Katipunan is a multi-functional space equipped with a retail area selling goods like coffee, beauty and wellness products, and fashion accessories all locally-made and sourced. The store also has a co-working space and can be transformed into an event venue for gigs and performances.