Shop Small in Philly for the Holidays

By Birch M. RSS Tue, December 12, 2023

The holidays are a great time to support local businesses! No matter who you're shopping for this holiday season, Philly's commercial corridors are the perfect place to check off your list.

What is a commercial corridor?

Whether you live in South Philly or the Far Northeast, you are most likely near at least one commercial corridor. Commercial corridors are blocks, usually on main streets, with many storefronts and businesses. These corridors are often associated with a Community Development Corporation (CDC) or a Business Improvement District (BID). CDCs, BIDs, and other place-based nonprofits support businesses and communities by fostering economic and civil development within an area. 

Read on to learn about some of Philadelphia’s amazing commercial corridors and small businesses. Unfortunately, we can't highlight all commercial corridors and small businesses in Philly. However, you can check out this interactive map to learn about all the corridors, especially the ones not mentioned below!


East Passyunk Avenue Business Improvement District

Nice Things Handmade | 1731 East Passyunk Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19148

Nice Things Handmade is a little shop filled with handmade goodies from near and far, including jewelry, prints, and housewares.


South Fellini | 1507 E Passyunk Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19147

This Philly-themed store remixes the city’s iconography into fun parodies and colorful mash-ups printed onto shirts, hats, and more. 


A Novel Idea | 1726 E Passyunk Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19148

This independent bookstore also hosts classes, tarot readings, author events, and book clubs. They will even order titles for you if they don’t carry them in-store!


Occasionette | 1825 E Passyunk Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19148

This independently owned gift shop carries goods from a variety of vendors. Occasionette has other locations, including one in Chestnut Hill and its flagship in Collingswood, New Jersey.


Fishtown District

Proper Goods | 2032 Frankford Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19125

Proper Goods is a plant, home, and gift shop stocking handmade goods, jewelry, crystals, and cards, in addition to houseplants and their accessories.


Minnow Lane | 2029 Frankford Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19125

This is a boutique children’s store with ethically sourced, sustainable, and non-toxic developmental toys, clothing, and nurturing products for young kids and their families.


Philadelphia Percussion and Drum | 443 E Girard Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19125

This is a music shop specializing in percussive instruments such as drum kits, hand drums, tambourines, and accessories.


Martian Toys’ Mothership Gallery | 314 E Girard Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19125

This is a store/gallery specializing in unique and collectible toys. Check out their subscription service!


University City District

Baltimore Pet Shoppe | 4532 Baltimore Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19143

Baltimore Pet Shoppe is a one-stop shop for all of your pet’s needs. They also partner with several animal shelters and always have cats available for adoption on site.


Bindlestiff Books | 4530 Baltimore Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19143

Bindlestiff is an independently owned bookstore with a curated selection of fiction, nonfiction, children’s and YA titles.


Common Beat Music | 4916 Baltimore Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19143

Common Beat is a music store carrying records, musical supplies, used equipment, and instrument repair. 


Third Wheel Cheese Company | 705 S 50th St, Philadelphia, PA 19143

This cheese shop specializes in farmstead and artisan cheeses from the Northeast region.


Fairmount Community Development Corporation

Fairmount Bicycles | 2015 Fairmount Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19130

Fairmount Bicycles is a queer-owned bike shop selling new and used bicycles, biking gear, and bike rentals. Check out the associated Philly Bike Tour Company for a guided bike tour through the city!


Cultivaire Plant Store | 915 N 28th St, Philadelphia, PA 19130

Cultivaire is a retail plant shop for experienced plant lovers and beginners alike, also selling locally made art. Check out their plant installation services as well!


Ali’s Wagon | 2017 Fairmount Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19130

Ali's Wagon is a woman-owned boutique carrying housewares, candles, jewelry, clothing, toys, books, and more.


Kith + Kin | 3060 W Jefferson St, Philadelphia, PA 19121

This play space is intended to support early childhood development and parenthood through child-led play, educational classes, and support groups. Check out their memberships and play packages!


Germantown United Community Development Corporation

Bargain Thrift Store | 5261 Germantown Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19144

This thrift store has a large selection of clothes, home goods, knick-knacks, books, and vintage items.


Uncle Bobbie’s Coffee and Books | 5445 Germantown Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19144

Uncle Bobbie's is a coffee shop/bookstore created to provide underserved communities with access to books and a safe, community space. 


The Weave Bar | 5603 Germantown Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19144

The Weave Bar is an express-service hair salon specializing in hair extension (weave) services. Check out their West Philly location, too!


Old City District

Artist and Craftsman Supply | 307 Market Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19106, US

This is an employee-owned shop carrying supplies for fine arts, crafting, hobbies, and more. Check out their Chestnut Hill location, too!


Omoi Zakka Shop | 41 S 3rd St, Philadelphia, PA 19106

This is a quirky, Japanese-influenced life goods and stationery shop. 


Art Star | 111 S Independence Mall E (The Bourse), Philadelphia, PA 19106

This is a marketplace for handcrafted goods including wall art, jewelry, holiday ornaments, greeting cards, and more.


A Four Foot Prune | 142 N 2nd St, Philadelphia, PA 19106

This is a vintage and antique shop with reasonably priced, unique home goods, knick-knacks, and apparel. Check out their Instagram page to shop online!

Happy holidays from the Free Library's Business Resource and Innovation Center!

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