DUTCHESS COUNTY, N.Y. -- Mother's Day will be here before you know it and with it, that age-old question: What's the best thing to buy?
Here, a few local "beyond the mall" solutions from area mom and pop stores.
Go Handmade . Support a local artist and find a one of a kind item in the process at the Dutchess Handmade Pop-Up Shop. Among the products you'll find: greeting cards, ceramics, glass, decorative items, woodcraft, artworks and jewelry. The shop is open now through Thursday, May 12. Shop Mom: Arts Mid-Hudson Gallery, 696 Dutchess Turnpike, Poughkeepsie, (845) 454-3222, www.artsmidhudson.org/ .
Darryl's Boutique, Rhinebeck: Fashionistas will love pretty much anything and everything at Darryl's where the emphasis is on clothes and accessories that are unique, wearable, versatile – and always affordably priced. Shop Mom: 18A East Market St., (845) 876-8800, www.darrylsny.com/ .
Elizabeth Boutique, Poughkeepsie: Handbags in vegan and leather are among the items Beth Madsen, the owner of Elizabeth Boutique, anticipates selling well for Mother's Day. She's also wild about her other inventory: Madison Everyday Clutches ( genuine Italian leather with tassel), Regina Wallets (perfect for adding a gift card inside), Saatchi stone studs or tear drops, and scarves. Shop Mom: 3 5 Collegeview Ave., (845) 471-9632, www.elizabethboutique.com/ .
Echo Boutique, Beacon: There's a new spring line of sandals, purses, wallets dresses, and shoes at Echo, known for catering on one side to women and on the other to children. Shop Mom: 470 Main, (845) 440-0047, www.echobeacon.com/ .
Haldora, Rhinebeck: Rhinebeck resident Haldora Bjornsson is a master of creating outfits using mostly natural fabrics. Since she produces her own collections, all garments are limited, often with many one of a kind or three of a kind, ensuring a stylish gift Mom will cherish. Shop Mom: 28 E Market St., (845) 876-6250, www.haldora.com/ .
Lauren & Riley, Beacon: There are tons of scarves here as well as perfumes and creams, all of which make ideal Mother's Day gifts. The shop -- named after the owner's two daughters -- also has a nice collection of cards. Shop Mom: 462 Main St., (845) 831-3862, www.laurenandriley.com/.
Main Street Boutique Fishkill, Fishkill: Along with clothes in sizes small through 3X -- many with a vintage flair -- you'll find jewelry, handbags, scarves and accessories. Those looking for a mother/daughter gift might like the silver heart necklace with a large heart for mom; a smaller heart for the child. There are also "Mom" bracelets available. Shop Mom : 1119 Main St., (845) 765-2530, www.boutiquefishkill.com/ .
Sierra Lily, Poughkeepsie: Jenny Tell grew up in the business, learning from her mom, Janice Bocchino. Now the one making decisions, she prides herself on featuring items women want. Hot sellers this time of year: Alex & Ani gift sets, Vera Bradley items and Pandora jewelry. The store offers more than 35 brands that are made in the U.S. -- another reason to celebrate. Shop Mom: 1955 South Rd., (845) 297-1684, www.sierralily.com/ .
Bella Lucia Salon, Poughkeepsie: Treat Mom to a blow-out or a new hairstyle. The salon also offers makeup applications, lessons and temporary lash extensions. Shop Mom: 11 Liberty St., (845) 452-5824, www.bellalucisalon.com/ .
Utensil Kitchenware, Beacon: Is Mom a cook? If so, she'll love the array of items at this cozy shop where Lodge Cast Iron items are always big sellers. Also fun: The Carry on Cocktail Kits, a great way to get a Mother's Day party started. Shop Mom: 480 Main St., (845) 202-7181.
Give the gift of cake: Just over the border in Ulster, Marion Peters of Dolci Bella Fine Foods, Inc. makes moist, tasty cake balls in more than 50 varieties, including the oh-so-popular red velvet. Other top sellers: Lemoncello, cannoli and banana peanut butter. There are even booze balls! Shop Mom: 800-553-3802 or www.dolcibella.com/ .