Venice Shopping

It’s no secret that Venice offers some excellent shopping opportunities, but the best of them are often not the most conspicuous. Look beyond the ubiquitous street vendors and the hundreds of virtually indistinguishable purse, glass, and lace shops that line the calli, and you’ll discover a bounty of unique and delightful treasures—some might be kitschy, but much will show off the high level

of craftsmanship for which Venice has long been known.

Alluring shops abound. You'll find countless vendors of trademark Venetian wares such as Murano glass and Burano lace; the authenticity of some goods can be suspect, but they're often pleasing to the eye regardless of their heritage. For more sophisticated tastes (and deeper pockets), there are jewelers, antiques dealers, and high-fashion boutiques on a par with those in Italy's larger cities but often maintaining a uniquely Venetian flair. Don’t ignore the contemporary, either: Venice's artisan heritage lives on in the hand and eye of the today’s designers—no matter where they hail from.

While the labyrinthine city center can seem filled with imposing high-fashion emporiums and fancy glass shops, individual craftspeople often working off the main thoroughfares produce much of what is worth taking home from Venice. In their workshops artful stationery is printed with antique plates; individual pairs of shoes are adroitly constructed; jewelry is handcrafted; fine fabrics are skillfully woven; bronze is poured to make gondola décor, and iron is worked into fanali lanterns; paper is glued, pressed, and shaped into masks; and oars and forcola oarlocks are hewn and sculpted in the workshops of remér wood craftsmen.

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Venice Shopping

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Ca' Macana

  • Specialty Stores

A large showroom offering lots of gilded creations, both traditional and new, is a must-see. Ask about mask-making workshops. ...

Cornici Trevisanello

  • Crafts

Byzantine and rich Renaissance handcrafted frames are made of gold-leafed wood and inset with antique glass beads, mosaic tesserae, and...

Cose Antiche di Luca Sumiti

  • Crafts

Luca Sumiti carries on the work of his father, Maurizio; traditional wrought-iron chandeliers and lamps come unadorned, gilded, or tastefully...

Fabriano Boutique

  • Books/Stationery

The name has been synonymous with high-quality paper since 1264 and is esteemed by publishers, writers, and artists. The boutique offers...

Gilberto Penzo

  • Crafts

The gondola and lagoon boat expert in Venice creates scale models and real gondola forcole in his laboratorio (workshop) nearby.

Jonathan Ceolin

  • Crafts

Carrying on the traditions of his adpated city, this craftsman makes traditional wrought-iron chandeliers, wall lamps, and Venetian lanterns...

La Bottega dei Mascareri

  • Crafts

Despite the great popularity of the Venetian Carnival, mask-making is sadly a dying art in the city. The large majority of masks for...

Le Forcole di Saverio Pastor

  • Crafts

The sculpted walnut-wood oarlocks (forcole) used exclusively by Venetian rowers may be utilitarian, but they are beautiful, custom-made...

Paolo Brandolisio

  • Crafts

Paolo Brandolisio's workshop is a lofty tribute to his craft; this is where Brandolisio apprendiced with his famous mentor, Giuseppe...

Valese Fonditore

  • Crafts

This studio has been casting brass, bronze, copper, and pewter into artistic handles, menorahs, Carnevale masks, and real gondola decorations...


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