Nantucket, recently referred to as “Billionaire’s isle” by the Boston Post, is a paradise destination for the rich and the famous and a shopping haven for them.
But apart from the top-of-the-line boutiques of leading designers which you can see there, the island is also home to some charming local galleries and shops. You can buy locally crafted items and art to take home as a sweet memory from your vacation there.
You don’t have to own a million-dollar estate on the island to enjoy a perfect vacation in Nantucket.
The best way to get the authentic feeling of the Nantucket lifestyle and vibe is to book a suitable rental residence for your stay. There are many homeowners who offer their houses for short-term rentals. Such rental residences are available in all 15 different neighborhoods of the island. This means that you can choose the best one for your preferences and budget.
Once you are there, you will be able to explore the stunning beaches, and untouched nature, along with the perfectly preserved historic lighthouses, cobblestone streets, buildings, and cottages.
It is very likely that you will want to buy some keepsakes to bring back home to remind you of this magical place. Some of the most popular locally crafted items you can buy from Nantucket include the weaved lightship baskets, the delicate fabrics and linens, the nautical-themed wood carvings, and other things, handcrafted jewelry, and the famous Nantucket Reds pants.
If you are planning a trip to the New England island, and want to buy the most representative and best local items to bring back as gifts or as memories or home décor items, then you should visit some of these top shopping places there.
Murray’s Toggery Shop
The famous Nantucket Reds, featured in The Official Preppy Handbook, are pants made of red cotton canvas. They can only be found and bought at Murray’s Toggery Shop on Main Street in Nantucket.
Interestingly, despite their name, these pants, shorts, hats, and other apparel items quickly and easily fade into their famous dusty rose or salmon pink-like color. According to the owners, this is reminiscent of the sails of the boats in Brittany.
They replace the traditional khaki or chinos shorts on the island and in the New England area nearby. Some consider them a symbol of the northeastern preppy culture and style.
Ever since they were first introduced by Murray’s Toggery Shop owner in the 1960s, they have become a highly recognizable brand. But since they have been trademarked, you can only buy a pair in this particular store in Downtown Nantucket.
The store used to be owned by the founder of Macy’s Department Store. Today is still being run by members of the Murray family, who you will get to meet if you decide to shop there.
Nantucket Looms is a top-rated attraction in Nantucket. It is the place to go if you want to buy the best traditional hand-woven carpets, blankets, and other items.
It was established back in 1968 and is still the home and workspace for the leading local weavers and artisans, who use the second floor above the store as an actual workshop.
The weavers still use the traditional Macomber type loom to make their unique hand-woven goods.
They use the most luxurious and best materials for their work. Some of them include Scottish cashmere, merino wool, Japanese silk, mohair, and others.
It comes as no surprise that this store has had some famous customers, including Jackie O., Princess Kelly, Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Hilary Clinton, and Bill Gates, to mention a few.
If you want to add one of these gorgeous handcrafted items to your home décor or give it away as a precious gift, then you should definitely visit the Nantucket Looms store on 51 Main Street.
Nantucket Pearl Company
The Nantucket Pearl Company was established and is run by Pam Freitas. She is dedicated to making and selling unique American-made jewelry with high-quality pearls and other precious stones and materials at affordable prices.
At this store at Straight Wharf, you can choose from a range of beautiful handcrafted jewelry pieces. It is handmade with hand-picked pearls, crystals, stones, glass, and other materials by the author.
She was largely inspired by Chinese culture, and this can be seen in her handcrafted pieces of jewelry which all carry her signature small red bead.
You can purchase beautiful bracelets, earrings, necklaces, and other pieces to wear or give away as presents to loved ones. Best of all, the owner has kept her promise to keep the prices affordable for all.
Nantucket Carving & Folk Gallery
Some of Nantucket’s most iconic and charming things are the carved natural weathered wood signs with names and other carvings. They can be seen hanging on most houses and buildings on the island.
Buying one of these hand-carved signs will allow you to add some of that character to your own home, office, or other space.
You can visit the Paul Mccarthy Woodcarving Gallery if you want to purchase one or more of these nautical-themed wood signs. There you can buy various carvings and decorations typical for Nantucket too.
It is located on 167 Orange Street and houses the gallery of the ready works as well as the workshop of the owner and carver Paul McCarthy and his talented partner Jean Petty.
You can find various unique handmade items. They include signs, whale and shorebird figures, and paintings by the local artisans and artists who own the shop.
These items and artworks are an excellent way to bring a piece of Nantucket back home with you when you leave the idyllic island.
Flowers on Chestnut
Blooming hydrangeas, roses, and other flowers are everywhere in Nantucket. You will see them in the overflowing gardens and hanging baskets on the streets, the window boxes, and bouquets in the homes and public spaces.
You can buy a unique flower arrangement to decorate your rental home there. You can also send flowers to someone special. And even take some plants home with you when you leave from the leading florists on the island, Flowers on Chestnut.
The florist is on Chestnut Street in Downtown Nantucket.
It is the perfect place to go if you are planning a wedding, anniversary, or another special event on the island. The shop also has tabletop accessories, gift baskets, and other items you can order, add to a wedding registry, or send or buy.