More artisans

On Salizada San Lio, Castello, number 5468, a new shop has opened! It is the tiny offspring of the main shop, Il Gufo Artgiano, on the Ruga degli Spezieri, 299, in San Polo.

I was attracted to it by the sight and smell of cow hides hanging at the door way, then when I looked in the door, by the delight of many colourful pieces of leather work.

Everything is hand-made, and in this shop you can find handbags, coin purses, credit card holders, belts, bracelets, bookmarks …

They are fighting the tsunami of shops with cheap ‘leather’ imports that are springing up all around the city (and not only in Venice).

The designer, on the right, and the artisan, on the left

The designer, on the right, and the artisan, on the left

P1060400

My little purchase. I’ll use it with pride and good memories

Lonely Planet review for Il Gufo Artigiano

Hot copper and extremely careful handling is the secret to the embossed  leather designs gracing journals, handbags and wallets in this artisan’s  atelier. Ancient ironwork patterns in Venetian windows and balconies inspire the  swirling designs, with vibrantly coloured leather adding an unexpected modern  twist: orange satchels, saffron-yellow photo albums and verdant day  planners.

Read more: http://www.lonelyplanet.com/italy/venice/shopping/crafts/il-gufo-artigiano#ixzz2PZwKQG00

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30 Comments

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30 responses to “More artisans

  1. A friend has suggested that she is giving me money as a combo retirement/birthday/Christmas present so I’ll have it for Venice.
    I think it will be well invested in one of those bags!

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  2. Pam D

    Visited il Gufo Artigiano twice in march this year purchased a red bag with St Marks lion came back a day later to buy 2 coin trays & purse all with st Marks Lion what I liked was the fact the service and the quality of the leather I was surprised a new shop has opened in castello when we returned home we wished we had bought more items we were given a card with webbsite but not able to connect I have written to the san polo shop but have not heard any thing would love to buy another purse

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    • I hope you do hear from them! The shop in Castello had just recently opened when I posted this. They have truly beautiful leather goods.

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      • Pam D

        Haven’t heard back from ilgufo artigiano Caroline was good of you to send new email contact for them they must be busy coming into summer just have to until next visit to venezia glad you managed to get your lion bag for your birthday went out with mine today still smells of strong leather &we left Venezia in March that’s the quality of the bags

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  3. Hi, Caroline. The shop in Castello is new, the one in San Polo has been going for a while, I think.

    What a nice day, again! Do we dare hope ….

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  4. Caroline

    My eye was caught the other day by one of those bags embossed with the Lion of St Mark, but I hadn’t realised it was a new shop! Must go in. I’ve also had my eye on those shoes for a while… 🙂

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    • Pam D

      If you pop in to ilgufo artigiano in castello any chance you could find out the price of the coin trays with st marks lion & an online address

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      • I don’t know if Caroline will see this message, Pam.

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      • Caroline

        Pam, I did go in a few weeks ago & am planning to go back, as soon as I get the time, to get a bag for my birthday (last week!) – so will try to remember & let you know here.

        Yvonne, sorry I’ve not been responding to anything, work is still tough but I am fitting in the odd bit of lurking here! Will write soon. Cx

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      • Thank you, Caroline. I wish you could win a lottery so you could just enjoy Venice and not have to work so hard!

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        • Caroline

          That’s very sweet of you! Still, only a week to go so one last push. It’s been tougher commuting the last week due to the sudden arrival of real heat & the ‘afa’ – actual temperatures up to 31C, perceived temperatures up to 35C due to the humidity. From still occasionally wearing a coat at night & putting the heating on in the morning, to Too Hot, in 2 weeks – I went through 3 tops yesterday! Now having a ridiculously early lunch ahead of changing again & getting the 12 o’clock boat.

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      • Caroline

        Pam, we’ve finally made it back to the shop (and I’ve got my birthday present of a beautiful red & black lion bag!). The coin trays are E25 for the smaller square ones or E35 for the larger square or oblong ones. The woman said the website isn’t working (for what reason, we didn’t catch) & so the associated email address isn’t either, but gave us a card with a new handwritten email address of raffaella.murra@libero.it. And the phone number of the S. Polo shop (the only one on the card) is +39.041.523.4030.

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    • You’ll never catch me in Venice during your summer, not even to enjoy your company up on the altana, Caroline. Take care.

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  5. He is Y, you will charm him for certain!

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  6. MaryK

    Those bags look lovely!
    I to can highly recommend il Grifone. My keys are currently sitting in one of his lovely leather ‘trays’ and Jon’s pants are being held up by one of his belts……..!!

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  7. I will need to check out these places when I’m there in December!

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  8. Lovely Yvonne and what a nice thing you have done for them with your blog post. I shall certainly pay them a visit on my next trip.

    There is a wonderful leather shop I frequent, Il Grifone, on Fondamenta Gaffaro, not far from the Tolentini church. The signore is so kind and I love how he gets up from his sewing machine, wearing his heavy leather apron. He makes everything himself and his prices are reasonable. I bought a red handbag and the next year, I added an eyeglass case, change purse and he threw in a business card holder, all in the same red. He also gave me a sconto! Mark swears by his belts.

    It really is important to support these artisans who enrich our lives, isn’t it?

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    • Hi, SusieQ! Now you’ve given me another place to go and visit, and maybe I’ll find something else I NEED to buy!

      I went to say hello to Giovanni (the fellow in San Polo who does the terracotta, ceramics, etc.,) and he said he had some people come in who had found out about him from the blog, so that was nice news.

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  9. Their stuff looks lovely. I’d be buying a purse.

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    • Everything is of such good quaity, Darlene. A couple of doors down from this tiny outlet is the shop of a woman who makes shoes, either bespoke, or from her stock. You’d love them. I’d better get some photos, eh? Oh, I’ve got some camels to send to you … not the animals, just photos.

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  10. Your remarks have been an eye opener to me, Joanne. I had no idea of how far and wide this penetration is.

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  11. JoanneH

    Sadly China is everywhere even in villages in Africa they are making the traditional craft items cheaper than the people can make them, the chinese had huge warehouses in the major cities jammed with craft stuff they resold to the people who in may areas have all but stopped making things, but as we all know the quality is next to nothing. Shops like this need to get eveyones support as they are the true artistans of their crafts. Spoken as a merchant been there done that!

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  12. Go to one of the shops for sure, Linda. Their designs and workmanship are excellent. And, I love the colours!

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  13. Lovely…love the embossed lion on the large orange bag!

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