I try to stop in at Downtown Raleigh's Stitch, the retail storefront of local designer Holly Aiken and her iconic handbags, a few times a year to see what's new (and always take a peek when I get an email newsletter from the designer in my inbox). I rarely go a holiday season without picking up at least one gift from Holly and her gang, so it's first on my holiday gift list.
According to the bio on the store's website, "though her line has evolved over the years, Holly has remained true to her original vision, which is to provide uncomplicated bags using distinctive, indestructible materials. Influenced by colors found in dime store isles and vintage racing jackets, Holly's bags are primarily made from vinyl and bold black webbing trim, accented by stripes or crisp geometric shapes. Her color palette is slightly retro and always just right."
Every product that carries the Holly Aiken name is made right here in Raleigh - including handbags, totes, messenger bags, digital cases, diaper bags and other snazzy accessories. Prices range from $19 for the Runway Wrist Cuff to $186.00 for the AIRSHIP (Star) - Diaper Messenger Bag.
If you're looking for a quintessential "Raleigh" gift, nothing says "local" quite like a Holly Aiken bag.
Stitch is open Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. and Saturday from 1 p.m. until 6 p.m. at 20 E. Hargett St. (The store also participates in Downtown Raleigh's monthly First Friday festivities with extended hours of 11 a.m. until 10 p.m.) If you're pressed for time, you can shop online - even at 3 in the morning - at HollyAiken.com.