With Thanksgiving in the rear-view mirror, it’s time to get going on those Christmas lists.  KOLR 10 will be spotlighting area artisans and small businesses leading up to the holiday.  One genre that can sometimes leave you scratching your head when it comes to ideas on what to get them for Christmas- men.  Anvil Leather and JB Gourmet Spice Blends have great options for the men (and women too) in your life.

If it weren’t for a little prodding from coworkers, JB Gourmet Spice Blends might not be a thing. 

“During Law Enforcement Week once a year I was doing a cooking for coworkers barbecue,” explains Joshua,   “They really liked the flavor of the ribs and the pulled pork and the chicken.  They said ‘whatever that is on the meet, you need to market it and sell it.”

Four years ago, Joshua decided his coworkers might be onto something and he started developing the first spice blend of his company called Red Dirt Road.  Now, JB Gourmet Spice Blends boasts seven different blends.  He has expanded to 40 stores across Missouri and Kansas. 

Joshua says he never expected it to grow so quickly,  “I never expected for it take off like it does.  But, the feedback we get from the people that use it and the people we don’t know it’s very heartwarming and let’s us know we are doing something right.” 

In Springfield alone, JB Spices is in 14 stores.  You can find a full list of where to buy on their website (www.jbspiceblends.com).  You also can purchase and ship all of their blends directly from their website. 

Nestled on the west side of Park Central Square in Springfield is Anvil Customs.  It is a local shop, but according to owner Ryan Wasson, it tends to have more of an international following if you go off the places they have shipped to, “Probably every country minus the ones that don’t have access to the internet.”

Wasson started Anvil during 2004 in the midst of the Biker show craze.  It was through error of building his own motorcycle that his custom leather seats got a lot of attention.

“I was unemployed so it was kind of a light bulb moment, if you will,”  explains Wasson.

He knew he could make a profit off of his leather work.  Now, he makes handmade wallets, belts and chains, changing with the demands of the customers.  Anvil’s customer base is growing more and more local with each passing year. 

“If you look local you can find what you’re looking for.  Someone out there is working hard in their business to supply you with what you need.”

Ryan Wasson

Anvil’s website is the one stop you can see and purchase all of his handmade work. 

Both J.B. Spice Gourmet Spice Blends and Anvil Customs are running Black Friday deals in order to kick off the holiday shopping season.