Make It Up State publishes first annual small business gift guide

Business development and marketing organization Make It Up State released, Our Favorite Local Things, a curated guide of over 50 gifts that are produced locally and can be purchased online in preparation for Cyber Monday, a popular commercial holiday to promote shopping online. While big box stores and larger corporate brands have been promoting this day for years, it’s not as widely thought about as an event for small businesses like Small Business Saturday is.

“Our goal is to keep the love for small business rolling through this week and the giving season,” said Erin Pihlaja, founder, Make It Up State. “We will cap this week during Troy’s Victorian Stroll weekend with a market at the Capital Region’s original maker space, The Tech Valley Center of Gravity. We are offering two great ways to shop small for the season—in person or online.”

The guide was released via email newsletter and is separated by categories such as jewelry, clothing, home goods, and more. “I know a lot of makers and small businesses, and I was surprised by how many goods are made right here in upstate New York,” said Pihlaja. “We had to cap the list at 50, but we easily could have gone on.”

Make It Up State put out a call for recommendations on their Facebook and Instagram pages, and Pihlaja added that people should continue to tag the pages or use the hashtag #makeitupstate to alert organizers to local brands and products.

“We plan on producing this again, and hope that it really catches on,” Pihlaja said. “Small businesses can always use the extra boost, and who doesn’t want shopping to be convenient?”

Our Favorite Local Things provides website links to each business’ relevant product pages to help customers easily score gifts while shopping small. Many of the shops are also offering special Cyber Monday promotions such as discounts or free shipping.

Online shopping with Make It Up State: Our Favorite Local Things can be found here.

In-person local shopping: Make It Up State Holidaze Marketplace will be held during the Troy Victorian Stroll weekend on Saturday 12/4 from 10 am – 2 pm and Sunday 12/5 from noon-5pm at The Tech Valley Center of Gravity at 30 3rd Street, Troy NY 12180. Over 40 local vendors, free gift wrapping to benefit the YWCA of the Greater Capital Region, free holiday portraits from Make It Up State, STEAM Activities from the Tech Valley Center of Gravity, and more. More info on the event can be found here. Masks are required indoors.

About Make It Up State: Make It Up State is dedicated to supporting small businesses, promoting economic development, and reviving and preserving the arts, crafts and makers movements through educational opportunities and events. When you support Make It Up State’s initiatives you are also helping to support our mission.

mak·ing | \ ˈmā-kiŋ 1: The act or process of forming, causing, doing, or coming into being 2: A process or means of advancement or success

For us, making means many things. Food, music, fine art, jewelry, clothing or whatever you are inspired to make, we live to celebrate creativity. The Make It Up State team is comprised of professionals with years of experience in event planning and execution, marketing and communications, public/media relations, and operational excellence.

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