Favorite souvenir or purchase in Italy?

Sep 3rd, 2003, 03:42 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 501
We purchased some hand painted pottery from a workshop right off the main square in Siena in 1999. Beautiful work and done at the site. We watched the artist working on some pieces. My wife had the vase on the table this week with flowers in it and it looked great with a Tuscan scene and colors.

Try to find something unique that is made by the artist versus the mass produced shop stuff. Hard to do sometimes, but worth it.

Clothing items are not good souvenirs as they wear out and go out of style. Just buy this stuff to use and not to keep for years.

We also have some pieces of Murano glass that we enjoy and a unique wood piece purchased at Max's in Venice. This is a neat shop to visit if you get to Venice. Just depart Harry's Bar, turn right and walk up that sidewalk. You will soon see Max's.

Limoncello? Good stuff.
Bob1 is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2003, 07:45 PM
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My favorite souvenirs so far have been:
1.Hand made paper and pens encased in this paper from Florence and Orvieto.
2.Murano glass
3.The murano circular mosaic medallions that resemble stained glass windows...I have countless necklaces in various sizes and even a key ring!
4.Assorted dried pasta herbs from a stall in the Campo di Fiori in Rome
5.Pieces of marble from the quarries of Carrara
6.Purses and wallets from Furla in Rome
Next trip I'm hoping to bring home capers from Lipari and maybe some truffle oil!
lisabelina is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2003, 08:25 PM
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I love that story. What wonderful parents! Happy birthday to your baby!

My favorite souvenir: a hand-painted water color over an artist's photograph of a Venetian canal. Not expensive, but so beautiful, and fun to frame and hang upon our return.

The one that got away: a beautiful lavendar leather blazer in Florence. Thought I'd go back and get it the next day, but the shop was closed! (Tues, I think) And I had to leave early the following day.
Dreamer2 is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2003, 08:35 PM
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Hi Lizzie518,
At what shop did you purchase your Capri bell? Also did you stay overnight in Capri and if so where?
mimipam is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2003, 09:01 PM
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Among other goodies, I always bring home dried porcini mushrooms. They're almost weightless, keep forever, and serve as tasty reminders of our trips when used in countless recipes.
Betsy is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2003, 09:18 PM
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1) Gift to little nieces: Pinocchio marionettes.
2) Gifts to me: Bells to add to my collection; one Murano, some metal, some ceramic. Small boxes to add to my collection; mosaic tops, ceramic, wooden, some antique and some new.
3) Gifts to husband: Cycling jerseys.
4) Gifts to friends: Set of coasters made from olive wood.
Jean is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2003, 10:45 PM
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Have been to Italy several times and have brought home many things including a complete set of ceremic dishes (actually mailed home), leather jackets, etc. But--,my most favorite item-in fact, I have more than one--are the olive wood cutting boards found in many Tuscan villages. I use them daily and each time it takes me back to where I would rather be--anyplace in Italy. In preparation for going, you may enjoy my website which gives recommedations and lots of photos of various places in Italy. Just go to to www.janeandken.com and navigate to Travel Reports and find both Italy 2001 and Italy 2003. I hope you enjoy the pages.
janelp is offline  
Sep 4th, 2003, 12:29 AM
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My wedding ring~Castellina in Chianti

Balsamic Vinegar(the stuff of which dreams are made)~ Castellina

An Etro fragrance I can't get in the US~Montepulciano
PamSF is offline  
Sep 4th, 2003, 04:48 AM
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mimipam: We stayed in Capri two nights, and I highly recommend it. We stayed at the Palace Hotel in Anacapri, which is also a lovely spa. If you do a search on Yahoo for that hotel it shows some lovely pictures.....and they are accurate. It's the kind of place you dream about. Gorgeous flowers in the lobby, marble everywhere, lush fluffy bathrobes to wear to the pool, awesome restaurant, top notch service, and good location (walking distance to great shopping and to the lift that goes to the top of Anacapri). The moment we checked in they automatically upgraded us to a junior suite with our own private pool. Talk about spoiled. It was wonderful.

I believe I also bought my Capri bell at the hotel.....they have several stores right inside.
Lizzie518 is offline  
Sep 4th, 2003, 05:51 AM
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I usually don't purchase anything in Italy other than perishables such as wine and chocolates or a pottery piece that is not too big. A week or so after I return home, I buy a coffeetable book and a leather purse (furla, nannini, or other) from a wonderful department store we have in Montreal that sells those things.....
I would hate to buy an expensive handbag and crush it in my luggage. I find the designer items to not be cheaper in florence than here, once I do the converting from euro.....
mitchdesj is offline  
Sep 4th, 2003, 07:12 AM
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I have gotten so many ideas from your above posts for tasteful souveniers all of your ideas for tasteful souveniers. How am I going to bring all of this home? What are the prices like compared to US?
tiffpolm is offline  
Sep 4th, 2003, 07:38 AM
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Jewelry is really no bargain....(at least in the jewelry stores in Capri), but if you're looking for something small and memorable it's fine. I was also able to find a replica piece in Amalfi (read gold plated bracelet with manmade stones) that was reasonable and looks authentic. Others may offer better advice on the prices of jewelry in Florence....

Another souvenir that we adore and can be reasonable is the local art. We bought a great oil print of Positano (in Positano) that is currently hanging in my kitchen. We also bought two charcoal prints in Capri that are hanging in my bedroom. (Whenever I wake up I can look at La Faraglioni and feel like I'm back in Italy.) Both purchases were reasonable and easy to pack.
Lizzie518 is offline  
Sep 4th, 2003, 10:30 AM
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A green leather bookcover from a shop in Venice.

I've always regretted not buying a particular glass Harlequin on my first trip to Venice years ago. I thought at the time it was too fragile for travel. Well, on return trips through the years I've looked for something similar, but never found anything like it. Moral of the story ... don't pass it up if you REALLY love it!
eliztrav is offline  
Sep 4th, 2003, 05:05 PM
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I love cheap souvenirs. On our recent trip I bought a calendar in Florence and a tote bag in Venice from sidewalk vendors for about 5 Euros each. I'm sure neither was made in Italy, and they're both cheaply made, but I love them both and they were so light and easy to bring home. The tote bag is striped like the gondoliers' shirts and embroidered with "Venezia" in gold. A great beach bag.
Linda0515 is offline  
Sep 4th, 2003, 05:14 PM
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Very interesting and different acrylic necklace and bracelet at Angela Caputi, in Florence. Cross Ponte Vecchio to the "other side", turn right onto Borgo Jacopo; her place is a couple blocks down on the right side of the street. On the way you will pass Osteria Cinghale Bianco (on left), a great little restaurant, delicious food, oozing with charm!
grandmere is offline  
Sep 4th, 2003, 06:29 PM
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I always bring or mail home a beautiful coffee table book.
WanderingTexan is offline  
Sep 5th, 2003, 03:25 PM
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Have always found these items as great gifts or souvenirs:

Murano Glass
Leather Handbags/Purses (made in Italy)
Inlaid wood works from the Sorento Area
such as jewelry boxes, etc.
lfdang is offline  
Sep 5th, 2003, 04:21 PM
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Cesendello lamps and silk scarves from Venetia Studium in Venice. Que belle cose hanno qua!
LunaBella is offline  
Oct 13th, 2003, 08:19 AM
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Topping! I would love to see more responses to this fabulous thread.

(who's trying to get more souvenir ideas for my upcoming trip to Rome!)
Renee is offline  
Oct 13th, 2003, 08:26 AM
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First time I went to Italy, I bought 5 pairs of gloves in Rome. Meant to give several as gifts, however only was able to part with 1 pair and kept the rest for myself.

Next trip it was a leather jacket from Florence; and on subsequent visits I've bought purses. And I don't buy the "name" brands (Prada, Guicci, etc); rather I seek out good quality locally made Italian works.
Tess_Durberville is offline  

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