Keeping it Local: Charleston's Best Destinations Paired with Locally-Made Gifts

A winter sunset over the Lowcountry
A winter sunset over the Lowcountry Calvin Webster
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Charleston is blessed with an abundance of outdoor destinations. Those destinations inspire locally made goods that reflect Charleston’s heritage and landscape, made by folks that love our outdoor resources. And, in many cases, these products are created to help residents and visitors to the Holy City enjoy the outdoors even more. Keeping it local makes for an enviable dynamic. 

This city champions local vendors, and provides a welcoming environment to sell their goods. Shopping locally is driven by pride for the local economy (and also because it's just plain easier to go down the street to Queen Street Grocery than it is to cross the river over to Wally-World). Sure, there are boutique shops where prices run a little steep for fashion and home goods, but for the most part, local businesses provide value and quality. Shopping locally has led to an intimate community here in Charleston, which in turn leads to more connections, better shopping experiences, and good friends. 

To drive the point home, here's  are some local goods and vendors paired with a few of RootsRated’s favorite destinations. You may want to keep these ideas in mind, the holidays are just around the corner...hint, hint.

Lowcountry Local First supports local Charleston businesses
Lowcountry Local First supports local Charleston businesses Jamee Haley

Williams Knife Co. / Cat Island

Williams Knife Co. makes a fine oyster knife. Go pick one up, head out around Cat Island in your Jon boat to grab a bushel of oysters, and shuck those bad boys to a half shell with your brand new knife. Williams Knife Co. is a huge contributor to Charleston’s local economy, and one of the first businesses to launch Charleston into the shopping locally scene. Show them some respect, and have an oyster roast.

Free Fly Apparel / Surfing Folly Beach

Free Fly is a Charleston business that started, from the ground up, by producing the most comfortable UV protective bamboo shirts on the scene. Not to mention this company has played an integral part in marketing Charleston’s inshore fishing industry, which in turn has produced business for lowcountry fishing guides. Free Fly Apparel is primarily built for fishing, but these shirts feel like you’re wearing nothing while paddling. When you're ready to hit the surf at Folly Beach, Free Fly shirts also guard against board rash on your stomach, and are great alternatives to sunscreen, which most people do not realize has a devastating effect on our oceans.

Holy City Brewing / Fishing Morris Island

Logan Waddell

Disclaimer: Consumption of alcohol on Folly Beach is super illegal. What we’re saying is...pick up a growler of beer from Holy City Brewing, gift it, drink it, do with it what you will—then go fishing out on the Morris Island Lighthouse Trail. Will that Growler of Beer accidentally fall inconspicuously into your fishing wagon, then the contents of which into your mouth while you’re fishing on East Folly’s desolate beaches under a fiery red Lowcountry sunset? We have no idea, that’s a hypothetical situation that may or may not be possible. We will never know. The message to take away from this is that Holy City Brewing is an integral part of Charleston’s community, and that you should support them this holiday season. Also, fishing is on Folly is really fun.

The Daily / Pitt Street Bridge

The Daily is a breakfast and lunch joint/purveyor of local goods located on King Street. Our advice to you is to pick someone special in your life, build a picnic basket from all of the local goodies and prepared foods (prepared using local produce), and drive out to the Pitt Street Bridge. Treat your person to an outside Christmas lunch feast, overlooking the Charleston Harbor

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