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Forget socks & soap, get unique handmade Xmas gifts instead
There's absolutely no excuse for buying same-old Christmas gifts like socks and soap this year - unless of course, they're hand-crafted, luxury, designer, unique socks and soap, that you won't be able to find at your local department store. Get creative this Christmas with Melbourne's plethora of festive markets and specialty pop-up shops where you'll be able to find a gift for even the most hard-to-buy-for person on your Christmas list.
Multicultural Christmas Markets
There's a definite multicultural flavour running though the Christmas markets that will be popping up for limited runs throughout the Christmas period. Three of the best are:
This is the first event on our multicultural Christmas Markets calendar, coming to Fitzroy on Friday 22nd November. The Weihnachtsmarkt (sounds authentic, doesn't it?) will be full of handmade craft articles with a focus on decorations, which seems fitting since Germany is recognised as the home of the decorated Christmas tree. You'll also find homewares, fashion and accessories, and German festive food. Why not try some eggnog?
If you miss the German Market go French instead. You will not just discover unique gifts with a French twist at this free two day event, you can spend the weekend in France - well, almost. The tenth annual French Xmas Market & Open Day is organised and presented by Alliance Française de Melbourne (AFM), which is an Australian organisation dedicated to the promotion of French language and culture.
If German or French aren't your style then why not try Swedish? This popular event is a showcase of Scandinavian arts, crafts and design in the beautiful surrounds of the Swedish Church in Toorak. For two days you'll have access to a wide range of imported textiles, handicrafts and glassware, as well as Scandinavian food and traditional Scandinavian entertainment. You can even win a trip to Scandinavia. Admission is free but donations are welcome.
Image from event website.
Details When: Saturday 7th December from 10am to 5pm and Sunday 8th December from 11.30am to 4pm. Where: Swedish Church, 21 St Georges Road, Toorak. More information: Visit the Facebook page here.
Christmas Pop-up Shops
These specialty seasonal pop-up shops have an artisan design focus and a Christmas theme. They are a celebration of talented local designers and artisans so unique, local handmade wares will be the order of the day.
This one is a collaboration between Made 'n Thornbury Craft Market and Thornbury Womens Neighbourhood House. Some of the wares on sale will include jewellery from Kate Campbell Designs, wheat bags and scatter cushions from My Friend M'lee, kids clothes from Gus and Kitty, and beautiful accessories from Nellie Purses and Bags.
Image from event Facebook page.
Details When: From Tuesday 19th November to Sunday 1st December. Open 1am to 6pm daily. Where: 825 High Street, Thornbury More Information: Visit the Facebook page here.
As part of the Colour Box Studio Summer Program more than twenty local Melbourne artists and designers will be displaying their handcrafted goods at this Footscray pop-up. In addition to the shop, the full program also includes workshops and panel discussions.
Participating artists include One Sunday Morning (clocks/wall hangings/homewares from reclaimed materials), Paradise Structures (jewellery/clothes), and Urbanearthwear (ethically produced underwear).