Are you done with your holiday shopping yet?

Is your email inbox full of marketing emails from national retailers? It’s hard to resist because we’re all busy…it’s so much easier to just buy your present from a big box store or national retailer when they’re offering BIG discounts and even free shipping/guaranteed shipping before Christmas.

We hope you consider SHIFTING some of your spending this holiday season to a local business because…

shop local this holiday season


Wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving

thanksgiving 2014Growing up, thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday.  I think it’s because my birthday usually lands on Thanksgiving weekend.  Nothing beats good food (including birthday cake) and time with my family.

We usually spend Thanksgiving with my uncles, aunties and cousins.  I come from a big family – my dad has 9 brothers and sisters so you can imagine how many cousins I have – and scheduling time to meet up with everyone is pretty difficult.  Thanksgiving was the only holiday that we could count on where usually, everyone can make it.

Has anyone else noticed how corporate America squirmed its way into this holiday? Many retail chains are open during Thanksgiving now and I feel sad for retail workers who HAVE to work this holiday season.  As consumers, are we really that hungry for sales?  Do we really need one more day to shop?  Our society has moved away from thanksgiving being a national holiday to be spent with friends and family into the biggest shopping weekend. What do you think about this? Will you be shopping on Thanksgiving?

Whatever you do, we hope that you and your loved ones have a wonderful thanksgiving.  We really are thankful for your support of Shift Local and we hope that if you do shop this weekend, you make your way to local and independent shops.

Love Mari

PIC Oakland Prize: The $250+ Rare Bird Gift Basket

Overview with This Is OaklandUnlike last year’s Ideal Date Night, we were more selective with seeking prize donations for PIC Oakland. The theme for our prize giveaways during the PIC Oakland Reception at the Gondola Servizio & Lake Chalet Docks are prizes from Oakland Grown members who are featured in This Is Oakland.

The Rare Bird fits this theme and founder Erica Skone-Rees was super excited to put together an amazing gift basket that includes:

  • Woven basket
  • Woven zipper pouch
  • Breathless coasters
  • By Nieves bath salts
  • Upcycled Book journal
  • Cardboard Safari Moose Trophey
  • Prospector & Co products
  • Gift Certificate for one art class (expires 12/2014)
  • Rare Bird gift certificate for $50!

Vintage PoseKnowing that Rare Bird is an Oakland Grown member, we can be sure that they are doing their part to keep our local economy strong and that they do their best to be a sustainable independent, locally-owned business. Furthermore, Erica and Rare Bird has spearheaded community activities such as creating the Piedmont Avenue Art Walk that is held every third Thursdays from 6:00 – 9:00pm. Erica’s vision brought about a shift on the Avenue and many other merchants followed by opening their doors late every month. 

Q & A WITH Rare Bird

Answers provided by Erica Skone-Rees

What does local mean to you?

To me Local means neighbors, faces, pets, businesses, plants & trees that make up the community I love, support & appreciate 

Why did you choose Oakland to be the home of Rare Bird?

Oakland is Rare Bird’s home because this city is a perfect blend of rich culture, creative energy & forward thinkers

What does Rare Bird contribute to Oakland?

Rare Bird provides a mix of new, vintage, & hand crafted jewelry, art, home decor, clothing & accessories. We are especially proud to feature two local artists every month during Third Thursdays Piedmont Avenue Art Stroll and provide a market place for over 50 local artists & designers work year round. 

Visit Rare Bird’s website:

Follow Rare Bird on Twitter: @TheRareBirdCA

Follow Rare Bird on Instagram: @therarebirdoakland

Like Rare Bird’s Facebook:

RSVP to the This Is Oakland Book Signing & PIC Oakland Reception

Rare Bird Prize

PIC Oakland Prize: Crown Nine Cerco Necklace By Kate Ellen Metals

Last year I wrote an article titled Open Minds and Forward Thinking: Women Impact in the World of Business to thank the women entrepreneurs – all Oakland Grown members – who responded so quickly to my request for donations to run the Bay Area’s Ideal Date Night Contest. So it didn’t surprise me at all that Kate Ellen, founder of Crown Nine (also an Oakland Grown member) responded so quickly to my request for prize donations for PIC Oakland 2014.

She offered her beautiful Cerco Necklace to be given away as a prize during the PIC Oakland Reception on September 4, 2014 at the Gondola Servizio & Lake Chalet docks in Oakland from 5:30 – 8pm.

I asked Kate to share what local means to her:

Local means being engaged.  It means knowing and caring about the complexity and vitality of our neighborhoods and people.  It means choosing to do small and big things that help keep prosperity in our town.  

Visit Crown Nine’s website:

Follow Crown Nine on Twitter: @Crown9Oakland

Follow Kate Ellen Metals on Instagram: @KateEllenMetals

Like Crown Nine’s Facebook:


Crown Nine Cerco Necklace

Brought to you by Marc