I went on a mission to find made-in-Mountain-View gift items, or at least items that say “Mountain View” on them. Stop #1 on my adventure: everything in the entire Art Pop store on Castro is made in Mountain View. It’s true, every single item.
Some of the items I found at other stores are what I would call “localish” (that’s probably not a real word, I know) and I’m including some of those here too.
Therapy has fun tote bags, coffee mugs, and plenty of unique items that are made in California. That’s where the coffee mug is that says “bitch, I’m from Mountain View.” They’re incredibly helpful if you ask them to show you their locally made gifts. I love the silly socks and one sock company is in Santa Cruz. The “seal of approval” is ridiculously awesome.
Therapy has Timbuk2 bags that are made in San Francisco. I’ve purchased them in the past and they last forever!
Ava’s Downtown Market has locally made chocolate bars that they can’t keep in stock. It’s that good.
West Valley Music has music written by Mountain View composers.
Global Beads has made-in-Mountain-View jewelry items, lots of pearl necklaces.
Boutique 4 has dresses by a designer who is from Santa Clara.
I asked someone at Books Inc to show me what they have by local authors and, as you can see by the photo, they have plenty, but they aren’t all in one spot in the store so ask for help. Their staff is wonderful.
I asked about Jose Antonio Vargas’ latest book “Dear America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen” and they’re sold out. Jose is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, Emmy-nominated filmmaker, and a leading voice for the human rights of immigrants. And we’re proud to say he’s from Mountain View. I’m sure Books Inc will get more copies of it or will order one for you.
NASA Ames Research Center has a gift shop that is open to the public. It’s really much more than a gift shop, and they have fun (and funny) t-shirts and Nasa branded gift items.
The Computer History Museum also has a gift shop. Yes, you can go to the gift shop without having to purchase a ticket to see the museum. I’m going there next week to meet the buyer of all the geekery goodness for the gift shop. I can’t wait!
And there’s also the Google Merchandise Store. At one point, it was a secret, but the cat’s outta of the bag. Often there are tour buses out front and I’m always fascinated to look at the tourists and try to figure out where they came from. Every corner of the world is represented in this one little spot in our community. I bring all of my visitors here.