There is something undeniably charming about perusing exquisitely curated boutiques in our region in the lead up to Christmas.

Escaping the throng of shopping centres and avoiding city traffic, it is a chance to immerse yourself in some retail therapy with truly unique gifts you’d be hard pressed to find anywhere else. Supporting small business and the passionate people who run them is also reason enough to pull you away from the effulgent lights and out into the sunshine and splendour of Central Victoria.


Finely sourced and stocked with quality brands from around the world, Buster McGee is the foremost menswear store in Daylesford. With the largest range of iconic Amsterdam label, Scotch & Soda, there is a multitude of dashing and dapper apparel to choose from, including beautiful linen shirts for the warmer months. Stocking cult trucker caps from Goorin Bros. whose popular collections feature animals with tongue-in-cheek descriptions, you can also choose from grooming products including Milkman’s Boozy Body Wash range that feature cocktail inspired scents, Parle Moi de Parfum fragrances, and locally hand-poured Buster McGee candles. Plus, the comfiest boxer trunks from Stonemen whose prints are veritably frameable.


The Farmer’s Wife boasts two beautiful boutiques, in both Daylesford and Creswick, recognisable by their hanging wisteria and stunning shop front windows. Each store features specially procured pieces, so you could spend your day shopping between the two for a fully-fledged fashion fix. As the only Australian stockists of snazzy glitter-heeled sneakers from French label, Bons Baisers de Paname, they also stock Zjoosh vegan handbags with iconic interchangeable straps, jewellery from Melbourne brand Liberté, gorgeous cotton and linen dresses with colourful prints from the likes of Lola Australia and Once Was, as well as chic homewares and popular Bopo Women all-natural body oils.


David Bromley is synonymous with Daylesford as the popular and highly collectible artist established his renowned flagship studio in the town. In terms of unique gifts, a piece from Bromley&Co is an exceptional choice. Featuring bold and beautiful cast bronze sculptures, ceramic vases and hand-painted plates adorned with skulls, butterflies or nudes, these pieces make for wall-worthy decor. Choose your medium, with offerings of outstanding artworks printed on paper, silk screen or original canvas, as well as sublime linen and velvet throws and pillows, ensuring every facet of your abode can house a Bromley statement piece.


Being a gin lover isn’t just a pastime, it’s a passion. So, when you discover a truly home-grown, delicious tasting, award-winning one conserved in magnificently designed bottles in the Macedon Ranges, then you’ve hit the gin gift jackpot. Distilled on Jack’s Springs Farm in Newham, Big Tree Distillery produces a range of farm-crafted small batch gins with locally grown or foraged botanicals. Combined with fresh rain water collected from the distillery roof funnelled into a magnificent copper still, the gin produced here is a unique reflection of the natural wonders of our region. The gin bottle artwork is beautifully created by local artist, Sarah Gabriel, with limited editions of each piece in the series.


Woodend General is a considered and conscious store that joyfully combines everything from gardening tools to baby attire. With a sensational selection of kidswear that includes labels such as Halcyon Nights and Goldie & Ace, their curated collection of delightful toys are sourced from ethically made and handcrafted labels like Olliella and Nana Hutchy. A veritable gifting oasis, Woodend General also boasts cushions, throws and robes in bright hues from Bonnie & Neil, Society of Wanderers and Sage & Clare. An exciting new brand is Ben David by Kas whose amazing coloured glass and earthy ceramics collection is the perfect homewares gift. Elegantly designed and lovingly handmade jewellery rounds out the incredible offering, where you’ll also receive beautiful complimentary gift wrapping.

Hero Image Woodend General, photo by Sarah Pannell

About the author

Lara Antonelli-Leorke
Lara Antonelli-Leorke
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Lara’s writing career has traversed the worlds of fashion, music, film and travel for more than two decades. An accomplished editor, journalist and copywriter, Lara has gifted her global followers a front row seat to star-studded red carpets, fashion week runways, iconic concerts and wanderlust-worthy travel destinations. Born in Melbourne, she considered herself a city girl at heart, until she was wooed by the dappled light and leafy outlook of her beloved Woodend. When not being a boss lady for her marketing business, Rising Creative, or writing for her website, Pen To Paper Media, you’ll find Lara indulging in farmers’ markets, treasure hunting in vintage shops, enjoying the region’s wineries or discovering local adventures with her husband and two boys.