Austin is the ideal creative haven for artists, adventurers, musician lovers and foodies of all kinds. It’s also a boutique shopper’s dream come true, with eclectic shops of all kinds lining Austin’s bustling streets. From art posters and personalized coasters to picture books and artisanal bobbles, there is a plethora of uniquely Austin finds around the city that make the perfect gift for any occasion. So whether you’re a local looking for something special to give to an out of town friend or you’re just shopping for a one-of-a-kind gift for yourself, here are some perfectly weird gift shops in Austin where you can find exactly what you didn’t know you were looking for!
Tesoro’s Trading Co
One of the city’s longstanding landmarks and boutiques, Tesoros carries a worldly array of gifts and baubles for people who love unique gifts. Locals recognize Tesoro’s by the larger than life “Virgin de Guadalupe” stenciled on the side of the building by Austin’s own street artist Federico Archuleta. Here you can find a staggering collection of fair-trade, handmade items including figurines, beads, jewelry and small talismans. Buy a pair of Peruvian earrings to go with your Guatemalan beaded bangles. Or pick from a wide array of small statues, figurines, sculptures and paintings from talented artists and artisans all around the globe. Looking for handcut paper ornaments from Peru? They got em. Or how about Lucha Libre decorations. There’s plenty! Jewelry, purses, day of the dead pillows, decorative housewares, handcarved gourds, Mexican pottery, glass evil eye talismans from Turkey…the list of eccentrities goes on and on. But no matter what you pick from Tesoro’s you can be sure that it’s truly authentic and one of a kind.
Wild About Music
Since Austin is the uncontested live music capital of the world, it’s only fitting that they have a gift shop dedicated to celebrating the city’s iconic music scene. And Wild About Music is just that! Not only do they boast a giant collection of musical instruments, but Wild About Music also has plenty of art, gifts, jewelry, band memorabilia and unique Austin mementos that are perfect for the musician in all of us. Whether you’re a country music fan, a jazz and blues collector or a classic rocker, you can find a plethora of clever gifts in each genre. Peruse the racks for legendary band tees of KISS, Hendrix and Marley, or check out Wild About Music’s exclusive selection of ornaments, posters and decorations that are all about Austin and its world-renowned rockin’ history.
Located in the uber trendy SoCo district, Prima Dora is a kooky retailer that offers a variety of Austin-themed gifts and clothing. If you’re looking for something charming and cute to get for a friend, or even if you’re just shopping for yourself, there’s something fun for everyone. Keep rings off your coffee table with handmade coasters of Austin’s beloved street art, or slice and dice your veggies on a glass cutting board with the “I Love You So Much” sign on it. They’ve got tie dye Austin coffee mugs, koozies, magnets, clothing and jewelry galore! Prima Dora also has a funky selection of coffee table books, food books and biographies all about Austin. For a great gag gift, pick up an irreverent Willie Nelson or The Dude altar candle. Or give the gift of personal pampering with a homemade “Scent of Kalm” body soap. Whether you’re Austin shopping for Mom, dad, siblings, friends or yourself, you’ll find exactly what you’re looking for at Prima Dora.
Austin Gift Company
Founded in the turn of the century as a one stop shop for Austinites, movie makers and tourists, the Austin Gift Company is a super eclectic shopping outlet packed with knick knacks, trinkets and curios of all sorts. Tucked away in a strip mall in south Austin, this long-standing souvenir shop houses over 150 talented local vendors, each with a little something different to bring to the booth. For years, artisans, artists and craftsman have been going to Austin Gift Co to sell their wares. At this eclectic emporium, their motto is “If you don’t need it, we probably have it”. But despite its name, Austin Gift Company has way more than just Austin stuff. From college football accessories and “Keep Austin Weird” tees to handmade jewelry, soaps and stained glass, The Austin Gift Company is all about Texas!
Lucky Lizard Curios and Gifts
Opened in 2005 as a small gift shop off 6th street, Lucky Lizard has become home to one of Austin’s largest collection of “Keep Austin Weird” accessories. This bizarre shop of curios has everything from fancy flasks and plush bats to Willie Nelson T’s and Big Foot Car Fresheners. And in the true Austin spirit, there’s also a sizable selection of just-for-fun gag gifts like Big Foot Research Kits and Hypno Glasses! Many of the items offered at the gift shop are handmade locally by creative artists who love Austin as much as we do. But what makes Lucky Lizard truly unique is the unbelievably odd Museum of the Weird set up in the back of the store. This world-famous museum draws thousands of visitors from all over to see the weirder side of Austin. Even if you didn’t get the chance to visit the museum, you can grab a cool poster that commemorates this grossly unconventional occasion. Get your fill of “Austin Weird” then take some home to your friends and family!
Parts and Labour
Located right off popular South Congress, Parts and Labour is a longtime eclectic gift shop that offers a wide range of gifts and accessories for women, men and even babies! This charming artisanal shop is stocked with Texas-themed jewelry, clothing, purses, pins, posters and more! All the poster prints available at Parts and Labour are printed in local Austin shops by Austin natives, so every item you buy is pure Texas through and through. Get a few Texas patterned makeup bags for your girlfriends. Or get a pack of Austin street art stickers and a personalized postcards to really make an impression. They’ve even got a few accessories to add a little Austin to your home like “Avocado” tea towels and Austin Christmas ornaments. No matter what you decide on at Parts and Labour you can be sure that it was made with love by Texas hands!
Set in north Austin off bustling Burnet road, Atown is a stylish boutique filled with men’s and women’s clothing, jewelry, organic beauty products, decor and random finds of all kinds. This swanky assorted gift shop has something super cool and unique for just about every occasion: spell books and tinctures, Star Trek memorabilia, frida kahlo candles, dog clothes, funny desk plaques, “Sean Connery portrait throw pillows, Black Hatchet beard oil, “Broke-ass Musicians” bar soap, dinosaur-shaped succulents and sugar skull stuff out the wazoo. Atown proudly carries gifts and designs from over 100 local artists in the form of posters, paintings, sculptures and rarities of all sorts. You can also find tons of Austin swag in the form of “Queso” and “Taco” baseball caps, home decor, T-shirts, posters, coasters, koozies, coffee mugs and more. Even if you’re not shopping for anyone or anything in particular, the fashionably weird Atown is definitely worth a visit when you want to get a real taste of Austin life.
Art for the People
Nestled in a historic house off South First, Art for the People is a gallery, studio and market dedicated to supporting and showcasing local artists and artisans. Visitors and locals are warmly welcomed by the colorfully painted picket fence and bell-shaped door that beckons you inside where you can find a hidden trove of Austin treasures. The art gallery is comprised of various paintings on display from local artists that are constantly rotating to include the hottest talent in Austin’s art scene. But if you’re want something for yourself to take home or gift to someone special, check out Art for the People’s amazing artisan’s market. This little local shop has jewelry, posters, original artwork, prints by local street artists like Mike “Truth” Johnson and Lucas Aoki, Austin accessories, soaps, ceramics, cards, fashions and books. Everything at Art for the People comes straight from an artist or artisan from Austin, since this passionate place is all about “going local”. So don’t miss the chance to own – or gift – something awesome and original from an authentically Austin art gallery.