I am an academic and writer living in Melbourne. I love to travel and I also love writing about all the things Melbourne, regional Victoria and other parts of Australia have to offer.
Published December 9th 2019
You Will Find It Here
You can't miss it!
You will know you have arrived by the bright orange Vespa parked outside Clementine's, a little treasure trove of locally made Aussie gifts in Degraves Lane, Melbourne CBD. You will also realise that once you step into this lovely space that you could actually do all your Christmas shopping here. There is something for everyone, the baby, the foodie, the person hardest to buy for, the fashion-conscious, the homebody, everyone really. And the best thing about all the lovely and often unique gifts are the stories and the connections with the makers, growers and artisans that you will forge through hearing and knowing their stories and visions.
Here are some ideas for your one-stop Christmas shopping but you really need to see it for yourself and allow time to browse and talk to Melanie, the owner, who will tell you lots of interesting bits and pieces about the products and their creators.
For that person for whom it is difficult to buy presents, and let's face we all know one, there is The Melbourne Map, with all its buildings researched, photographed and drawn with painstaking detail. This map took over 4 years and 8000 hours to draw, illustrate and produce. If you live in the CBD and its near neighbouring suburbs, you can even find your house on the map. The choice will be between the black and white and the coloured map, each has its own characteristics and appeal. To understand more closely the work and expertise that goes into making these maps, check out the team of artists involved in making these maps.
The cute little colourful koalas would make a perfect gift for a new baby here or overseas, especially currently when koalas have been very much in the news due to the bushfires. These are soft and cuddly and perfect to snuggle with. There are other Australian-themed gifts for babies and toddlers too, and again make perfect gifts to send overseas.
For the foodie in your life or as a small gift for a host of a Christmas party, there is a wide choice of olives, olive products and other little delicacies from Mt. Zero Olives. Or if your preference is for something sweet, why not some chocolates with Aussie bush food flavours, little delicate meringues and many other biscuits and delicious sweet things.
Melbourne City Rooftop Honey is honey from beehives perched on tops of buildings in Melbourne's CBD, as well as further afield in the suburbs. Each jar of honey has a distinctive flavour but every jar is not only good for you but also for the environment. The project was started in 2010 and it is aim is to be part of a global effort to help save the honey bee from the various threats of disease and human habitation..
Beautiful ceramics by Ballarat artist Ruby Pilven will delight all those that would love something to brighten up a dull spot in the house, or just for the sheer pleasure of owning, touching and looking at these colourful pieces.
Even though Clementine's is a small shop you could spend an hour or more in the shop, looking at all the products to choose from - jewellery, scarves, tea towels, herbs and condiments and so many more. Making a decision about what to buy is even harder!
And because it's Christmas, why not buy some of the lovely Christmas decorations and cards displayed, the majority with an Australian theme, others with a story of their own. A story about how two young girls started making their own decorations and are now selling these to shops such as Clementine's that focuses on supporting local Victorian artists and producers. And really all the products in the shop have their own story to tell, they are not just gifts, they are a connection to the people who made them.