Here are some pictures of the really great stuff I got on my trip to Canada.....all the stuff I couldn't think of when Occifer Otto was grilling me about my purchases. It's just as well, he would have made me make an itemized declaration just in case I went over the limit. I've spared you a photo of the maple leaf shaped maple syrup bottle and the red double decker bus pencil sharper w/ the "Canada" stickers on it.
As much as I do enjoy kitschy souvenirs, when I travel and buy spendy things, I try to make a point of purchasing stuff made by local artists.
I got this gorgeous Chinese checkers game in Port Angeles the morning I left. I found one really cool store that was open super early (probably for ferry travelers!) so I went in to browse around. There was no price tag that I could see and you know what they say, if you can't see the price tag, you probably can't afford it. Being a marble addict, I had to inquire. The salesclerk looked and said, "$66.00". I said, "Sold." There was no way I was sailing away from Port Angeles without this. So she wrapped it up real good and I carted it around in my trunk till I got home. I wish you could see how gorgeous and colourful the marbles are. I found an incredible deal on these antique marbles at Willow Antiques in Chemainus. The larger set are antique German marbles and the entire bag was $20.00. Considering I've spent upwards of $50 on ONE antique marble, I thought this was a steal. The pee wee marbles were only $5 for the entire bag.Collecting antique beaded purses is another of my many passions, and again, this one was a steal at $83, also purchased in Chemainus. It's not a large purse, probably about 5" in diameter, maybe less, but the beadwork is exquisite. The key to good beaded purses is the size of the beads. The smaller the bead, the more intricate and expensive the purse. That's why this one was such a great deal. The most I've ever spent on an antique purse is $350, but the purse has to "speak to me." I won't buy just any antique, beaded purse. It needs to be unique and I have to feel that I absolutely MUST own it before I'll put out the money. One of these days I'll blog pictures of my purse collection. Many are too old and fragile for me to display anymore, and those are kept in an acid-free photo box wrapped in acid-free paper.These are some gorgeous art cards I picked up at my fave souvenir shop, Nootka Traders. Last time I was in Victoria I saw them and I didn't get them and I've been obsessing over it for the past 2 years.So I made sure I got them this time. I think if you click on the picture, it'll get bigger; they really are lovely cards. Not sure where I'm going to put them as our walls are chock full of stuff, but I'll find a place. The bottom card, of Parliament, is the one that's haunted me since my last trip in 2005. I have always bought a t-shirt whenever I've traveled places; this has been one of my "things" since I was a kid. I pretty much have always turned my head at the "Made in China" tag and bought it anyway. Imagine my surprise when I passed this shirt with a tag that said, "Made in Canada". I found this shirt at Nootka Traders and it's the only place in Victoria that sells it, that I could find anyway, and I hit ALL the souvenir shops. The art is by a First Nations artist who lives in Vancouver. I thought it was especially cool since I love the moon and my last name is Wolf, and I love wolves..... Oh and the pink thing is the sparkly bracelet I bought at Butchart Gardens. If you click on this picture, you can see all the dog hair covering my shirt. lolI collect these beaded cards and can only find them at one of my all-time fave stores on the planet, Instinct Art & Gift. They always come with a large and small card and are done by a Vancouver Island First Nations woman, with acrylic paints and hanging beads. This is the 3rd set I've purchased. By the way, only in the USA do we say "Native Americans" or "American Indians". In Canada, they are called "First Nations".Bought these at Instinct Art & Gift as well. Both are handmade in Nepal. Can you tell I'm a sucker for beads and glass?This is the painting I got from the artists along the promenade of Inner Harbour. As mentioned in my earlier blog post, they work with spray paints, as seen in this photo in the corner, under the 2 umbrellas, with the crowd standing in front of them. Can you believe they do this with spray paints???? I had a hard time seeing them making the pictures b/c the crowd is always so thick, and being short, I can't see over anyone's heads! They had a lot of really cool, ethereal, magical, celestial paintings, and I was torn between this one and one that depicted the planets, including my fave, Saturn. However, my fave colour is this deep cobalt blue, and I wanted to commemorate my seeing orcas in the wild for the first time, so I got this one and I'm glad I did.