Local businesses sell gifts made in America, Texas

Shops at The Pearl feature area artisans' work

Author: Marilyn Moritz, Reporter, mmoritz@ksat.com
Published On: Dec 06 2012 05:30:34 PM CST   Updated On: Dec 06 2012 05:48:26 PM CST
SAN ANTONIO -

Guayaberas to jewelry, locally made products are out there for the shopping this holiday season.  

And a growing sentiment to shop American is something small businesses and artisans are glad to see.

"That's really an awesome trend that's growing more and more," said Beth Bowers of Leighelena, a small jewelry and gifts store at The Pearl. "People are really wanting to keep things in the United States, which we love."

At her store, it's easy to spot the "Made in USA" label on merchandise like earrings and metal artwork and other unique gifts. The signature jewelry line is hand-crafted by a small business  in Austin.

"Everything is made in Texas," Bowers said of the jewelry line made of exotic skins and glass enamel.

The small business is booming along with shopper awareness about buying local.

The small business next door is tailor-made for shopping local. Dos Carolinas sells custom-made guayaberas for the entire family, which owner Caroline Mathews said shoppers seemed surprised to find.

"Then they are very surprised we make it in San Antonio, because everybody expects it to be imported."

Her decades-old business has been bursting at the seams. Last year, she had 15 employees sewing shirts at a small South side factory. Now, she has 20 employee and a new retail storefront at The Pearl.

A small, temporary  pop-up store at The Pearl was buzzing with craftspeople, businesswomen peddling their wares, including leather and pearl jewelry made in Seguin to home decor items made in San Antonio and photographic art made in Dallas.

"They love that it's local and something that reminds them of home," said  photographer Jackie Chaiken.

The pop-up event runs Thursday through Saturday  at 303 Pearl Pkwy. Suite 109.