As the number of shopping days for the holiday season wind down, I headed to Irving Street and 9th Avenue to pick up some gifts. For me, there are 2 gift stores that are always required stops: Tutti Frutti on 718 Irving Street (near 8th Avenue) and Great Gifts on 1377 9th Avenue (near Judah Street).
Tutti Frutti is a fun, fun store. I always come here for office Secret Santa/gift exchange or White Elephant parties. Whenever Lisa visits, she has to come to Tutti Frutti and always ends up buying out half the store. Items include mini Etch-A-Sketches, Mr. T talking keychains, PEZ dispensers, Wonder Woman and Gumby lunch boxes, and Wallace & Gromit calendars. I rarely see anyone leave the store without a smile on their face.
The other store, Great Gifts, is a wonderful place to buy small personal items such as magnets, jewelry boxes, candles, and small cosmetic bags. They also sell puzzles, kites, toys, extremely cool shower curtains, bath items and household gadgets.
While both places are small and often get cramped with only a few people in the store, most items in the store are no more than $20. For me, it's a very inexpensive way to buy chic/retro/cool gifts from shopkeepers who obviously love being in the neighborhood.
Unless there's a last minute emergency, I'm pretty much wrapped up shopping for the year.