By Avery Stone
May 15, 2017

In addition to its many natural gifts (like 35 miles of beautiful coastline), Virginia Beach is home to artisans who make one-of-a-kind products—from coffee to bespoke furniture to handmade soaps—perfect for visitors to bring home. Here, six of the city’s best.

Furniture: Benevolent Design Co.

Searching for a statement piece to spruce up your digs? The team at Benevolent Designs Co., crafts furniture and home goods—including barstools, tables, and benches, plus smaller items like cutting boards and magnetic succulent pots—out of entirely reclaimed materials. (To source these materials, the team at Benevolent travels across the mid-Atlantic states to hand-select pieces that have been deemed useless or forgotten, like wood from the side of an abandoned house.) To test out some of Benevolent’s pieces in the wild, head to the restaurant Esoteric (also located in the ViBe District), which features the company’s tables and chairs.


Soap: Tasha’s Handmade Soaps

The primary ingredient in the bars from Tasha’s Handmade Soaps is goat-milk, which is sourced from a herd of Nubian dairy goats on the 30-acre Hearthside Farm (located in the city’s Pungo farming community). All-natural mineral oils and honey from local farm-raised honey bees are also used.


Artwork: The Tar Roof

Located in a 160-year-old farmhouse in Pungo, The Tar Roof doubles as a gallery showcasing local art and handmade goods—like photography, paintings, woodworking, and jewelry—and an event space available to book for private parties. Visitors can also take part in on-site events like The Mug Club, a one-hour workshop taught by a local ceramic artist.


Heirlooms: First Landing Woodworks

Helmed by woodworker Philip Goold and photographer-slash-graphic designer Adam Roth, First Landing Woodworks is the best place to find heirloom-quality hand-made goods. Their offerings—including bottle openers, oyster-shucking knives, and furniture—utilize their signature black walnut (hand selected from a family-run sawmill in Pennsylvania) and American-made 304 stainless steel.


Crafts and Treats: The Creative Wedge

Everything sold at artisan market The Creative Wedge is made in America—and the majority is made locally. Carrying a range of crafts (like handmade jewelry, stationary, and soaps) as well as culinary offerings (like farmstead cheese, charcuterie, local honey, jams, and Virginia wine and beer), this spot is a one-stop-shop for any visitor searching for a unique souvenir to take home.

Bags: North End Bag Co.

At North End Bag Co., you’ll find handmade canvas and leather totes, duffels, and other goods (like aprons) that are equal parts durable and exquisite. In their workshop in The Alley, the North End team sketches their products and sews them with vintage sewing machines. Trust us—each is a work of art in its own right.