Local handicrafts and artisanal items to pick up on your trip
Since the 14th century, the village of Gzhel—31 miles (50 kilometers) southeast of Moscow—has been known for its pottery. These days, the distinctive blue-and-white floral pattern can be found on dishes, tea sets, vodka decanters, caviar servers, and countless other kitsch. www.gzheli.net
The quintessential Russian souvenir is the nesting doll, hand-painted in traditional styles or—now—featuring your favorite sports team, rock band, or movie characters.
Hand-painted lacquer boxes—usually black with a colorfully detailed scene—often depict Russian fairy tales and folk heroes. These artistic pieces are sometimes called Palekh boxes, named for the small town between Moscow and Nizhny Novgorod where this craft originated.
Vologda’s durable fabric is produced from flax, which is indigenous to northern Russia. Beautiful handmade tablecloths, blankets, and clothing are very reasonably priced at Vologda Linen in Gostiny Dvor, Ulitsa Ilynka 4. Tel. 7 495 232 9463.
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