This Williamsburg-based Independent Retail App Will Help You Nail All Your Local Holiday Shopping

Meet your new holiday shopping assistant, Shophood.
Meet your new holiday shopping assistant, Shophood.

Hi, Brooklyn, you have so much holiday shopping to do! Why haven’t you started? I know. I haven’t either. Here’s the issue: I kinda hate the idea of doing it online, because that does not feel very festive. (Well, neither does shopping outside in this sixty degree weather, but this is a new world we live in. Adjustments.) On the other hand, traipsing from local shop to local shop—which, yes, can include fantastic perks like holiday lights and spiked hot chocolate—does not guarantee success. Your search will likely be undirected and, even if it’s not, there’s no guarantee you will find the object you desire.

Guess what? Starting today, there is an app for that! Shophood is the work of two e-commerce vets and Brooklyn residents, Aaron Podolny and Lukas Thoms, who have brought together all of your favorite local stores, and their merchandise, onto one easily searchable phone screen. As you search by product, all the most promising gift candidates will surface; if you need a little more direction, Podolny and Thoms have put together general gift guides at different price points. You will be told at what local stores you may find the best items, and if they are in stock. Then you can make a beeline for that local store, soak up some warm but real holiday air, and purchase the winning gift. Easy!

Soon, says Podolny (a Yale graduate who worked at an economic consulting firm before moving to e-commerce), Shophood will expand to Greenpoint, south Brooklyn, and eventually Manhattan. For the time being, he and Thoms (previously’s top Global Buyer), debut the app with 42 independent Williamsburg shops, including In God We Trust, Brooklyn Tailors, Awoke Vintage, Bedford Cheese Shop, BAGGU, Catbird, Robert James, Depanneur, and on and on (thirty-four more times).

So, people, support local commerce while holiday shopping this weekend. Get thee to Shophood, then put on some clothes, and get festive in public, at all your favorite stores.


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