Best gift shops: Cobble Hill

Find out where to shop for gifts in this Brooklyn neighborhood.

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Shen Beauty

Shen Beauty

Critics' picks

Shen Beauty

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Former stylist Jessica Richards and beauty journalist Jules Stringer opened this Cobble Hill jewel—a candy-hued, old-world-style apothecary with modern touches. The space carries an assortment of all-natural and organic products, as well as a handful of high-end products for which Shen has exclusive U.S. distribution (one being top aesthetician Amanda Lacey’s cleansing pomade, $100). There are local treasures, too, including and a line of sulfate-free body washes ($18-$25), lotions ($18) and soaps ($10-$18) in aromas like lime-basil and water lily. Cosmetics connoisseurs and dabblers alike can try Becca sheer moisturizing tints ($42) that instantly wake up winter-weary skin, Ilia lipsticks and lip tints ($24–$34) and Piggy Paint nontoxic peel-off nail colors ($9). Or just make your next bubble bath more festive with Feeling Smitten organic, edible-looking cupcake bath bombs ($5.50–$12).

  1. 315 Court St between Sackett and Degraw Sts
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RECOMMENDED: 100 best gift shops in New York

More shops for gifts in Cobble Hill, Brooklyn

Paper Source

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Crafting connoisseurs flock to this paper haven. Since the original Paper Source opened in Chicago in 1983, founder Sue Lindstrom has provided handcrafted decorative papers, tongue-in-cheek greeting cards, artful wrapping paper and charming stationery. The gargantuan space hosts demonstration tables, where you can watch and participate in crafting workshops ($25–$40) such as bookbinding, card-making and rubber-stamping. Or save your bucks, and stop by for free in-store demos like holiday gift-wrapping tutorials; then take a peek at the inspiration boards to get ideas for your own crafting endeavors. But with more than 40 colors of card stock and envelopes, 500 greeting cards, countless rolls of ribbon in a rainbow of colors, and imported papers from Japan, India, Nepal, Thailand and Italy, the creativity should come easily. There are also ample gifts, including paper monkey puppet kits ($16), owl place-card kits ($14) and 2011 Wall Art monthly calendars ($28).

  1. 102 Smith St, between Atlantic Ave and Pacific St
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Papel

  • Price band: 2/4

Skip the Evite and go old-school by picking up invitations at this stationary store, started by Cali transplant Raegan Hirvela. Its walls showcase paintings from local artists, and the ceiling is adorned with paper airplanes. Wrap a present with Seltzer Recycled’s funky skull-and-crossbones gift paper ($3 per sheet) or Art with Heart’s robot-patterned paper ($8); then personalize it by filling out one of Snow & Graham’s assorted watercolor alphabet note cards ($12 for a box of five cards with envelopes). Or just skip the stress of gift giving altogether, and buy yourself a silk-screen-covered journal to pour your heart out ($12).

  1. 225 Court St, between Baltic and Warren Sts
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Dekalb Market

  • Price band: 1/4

Calling all foodies and fashionistas: Grab your wallet and skedaddle over to this much-anticipated marketplace, which is a triumvirate of food, retail and eco-minded sustainability projects. The bazaar’s 22 vendors are showcasing their goods in brightly painted, repurposed shipping containers that serve as retail outlets and restaurants. Support local businesses and art foundations, like the Pratt Design Incubator, which is shilling Holstee recycled wallets ($25) and Alder printed silk scarves ($144). Chomp on Mazie’s Bites crispy fried-fish tacos (two for $10) or Cuzin’s Duzin three-piece mini doughnut samplers ($1), then slip into Honeysuckle and Hearts vintage gems, including a 1970s lace maxidress ($98) and a pink long-sleeved romper ($45). Try on a few pairs of YakBlak’s restored vintage eyeglasses ($120–$200) before you prowl through Daga Antiques for handmade silver-and-stone necklaces ($20–$250) and Pauline Trigère heirloom gold-link belts ($400). Dekalb Market’s extensive one-acre property is also home to Dekalb Farm, and while the locally grown fruits and veggies from the Brooklyn Grange and Newton Farm Cooperative are sadly not for sale, you can learn how to cultivate your own produce at 3rd Ward’s free monthly workshop on urban agriculture.

  1. 138 Willoughby St, at Flatbush Ave Ext, 11201
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Shen Beauty

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Former stylist Jessica Richards and beauty journalist Jules Stringer opened this Cobble Hill jewel—a candy-hued, old-world-style apothecary with modern touches. The space carries an assortment of all-natural and organic products, as well as a handful of high-end products for which Shen has exclusive U.S. distribution (one being top aesthetician Amanda Lacey’s cleansing pomade, $89). There are local treasures, too, including Amanda Walker vegan essential-oil blends ($65) and a line of sulfate-free body washes ($18), lotions ($18) and soaps ($8) in aromas like almond-bergamot and tangerine-spearmint from Brooklyn’s own the Bubble Roome. Cosmetics connoisseurs and dabblers alike can try Becca sheer moisturizing tints ($42) that instantly wake up winter-weary skin, Lipstick Queen lipsticks and glosses ($16–$24) and Piggy Paint nontoxic peel-off nail colors ($9). Or just make your next bubble bath more festive with Feeling Smitten organic, edible-looking cupcake bath bombs ($5–$12).

  1. 315 Court St, between DeGraw and Sackett Sts
More info

Brownstone Treasures

  • Price band: 2/4

Dumpster diving will certainly lead to no-charge furnishings, but you’ll have to take your chances with bedbugs and bodily fluids. For one-of-a-kind furniture that don’t require rummaging through the trash, head to this vintage housewares depot. Owner J.P. Ferraioli handpicks every piece, and stocks every era, from mid-century to Danish modern and Art Deco. Currently up for grabs is a retro ’60s laminate desk ($125), an Art Deco wardrobe from the ’30s ($350) and a Victorian marble-and-wood dresser ($375).

  1. 220 Court St, between Baltic and Warren Sts
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Classic Impressions

  • Price band: 1/4

In business for more than 20 years, this small Brooklyn staple—with outposts in Staten Island and Bay Ridge—finds ways to keep its product fresh and unique. It stocks an eclectic array of everything and anything: decorative vases, picture frames, stylish paper goods, lotions, candles and a small selection of jewelry. Pick up martini glasses ($8), Thymes lotions ($21) and Dolce Vita teas by Tea Forte ($12).

  1. 296 Court St, between DeGraw and Douglass Sts
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Pas-Par-Tou

  • Price band: 2/4

Mother-daughter team Paulina and Gosia Rojek debut a sister store to Shelterego, their gift shop on Shelter Island. Just like the original, this space maintains a nautical theme: One wall is covered with a recycled sail, and the small home goods ($12–$250), linens ($12–$450) and giftable knickknacks ($7–$180) all have a decidedly beachy vibe. Top picks include Roost etched-glass champagne flutes (six for $70), Texlen linen aprons ($30) and house-line cotton-thread bracelets adorned with freshwater pearls ($35). As a nod to their heritage, a small selection of jewelry ($160–$532) is also available from Polish designers such as Marcin Gronkowski and Jacek Byczewski. Look for Marcin Zaremski’s silver bracelets, including gold-plated cuffs ($389–$532) and brushed-silver buckled styles ($372–$452).

  1. 206 Court St, between Warren and Wyckoff Sts
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Charlie-n-Diamond

  • Price band: 2/4

Brooklyn moms Elizabeth Lind and Anna Man started making jewelry together as a creative outlet—and an excuse to hang out while their kids played with one another. Last year Lind, a former pastry sous chef, and Man, a salon owner and hairstylist, joined forces to open this women’s and children’s boutique in Cobble Hill. Now that they’ve outgrown their Atlantic Avenue spot, Charlie-n-Diamond is moving one block east to a new subterranean location in the basement of Man’s Boy Luv Girl Salon. Venture down a flight of stairs to glimpse giftworthy items made by talented friends and local designers, including Ryann eco-friendly African mud-cloth clutches ($48), I Love Fink upcycled tees ($75–$140) screenprinted with geometric shapes and splatters, Babylady Inc. children’s Africana pants ($75) and Lind and Man’s own vintage-brooch pendant necklaces ($28).

  1. 147 Atlantic Ave, between Clinton and Henry Sts
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Dekalb Market

Find indie food vendors, an educational farm and an Internet radio station at this outdoor-market-slash-sustainable-art-installation adjacent to the Fulton Street Mall. More than 20 merchants—including Sour Puss Pickles, Maharlika (Filipino food) and Robicelli's—operate out of repurposed shipping containers on the one-acre lot. Farmers from the Brooklyn Grange and the Newton Farm Cooperative, along with other community outfits, tend an eight-plot garden, which also serves as a classroom for urban farming and cooking demos.

  1. 138 Willoughby St, at Flatbush Ave Ext
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Néda

  • Price band: 2/4

A treasure trove of local designers, this women’s boutique displays the finest from the pack. With clothing ranging from casual basics to fancy frocks, there's something for every occasion. But even the casual pieces are luxurious, as no polyblend material is permitted in the store's inventory. Designer offerings include Bellissima, Coco Plumb, Jan Palmer, Zitara and Laurent Olivier.

  1. 302 Court St, at Degraw St
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