Finding Artisan Craftwork in Spain

Finding Artisan Craftwork in Spain. 

Strolling through the streets of Spain you cannot help but admire the rich history that beckons you back to days gone by.  A stunning contrast of old world architecture and modern day comforts co-existing in beautiful harmony.

The same is true for the shopping experience in Spain.  Well known for its modern shopping malls and luxury boutiques, Spain is also home to many Artisans who continue the handmade crafts that have been passed down generation to generation.  No trip to Spain would be complete without taking time to admire, and purchase, some of the beautiful handicrafts of Spain.

Below is a list of several of the handcrafted items you should look for on your next trip to Spain:

Ceramics & Pottery:

Galicia uses its rich clay to create Sargadelos, edgy pottery that mixes history with modern influences.


Miravet Village is located in the south of Barcelona and is famous for its pots, bowls and jugs. There are seven pottery workshops here where can purchase handmade items.


Seville has many mosaics and hand painted tiles with an abundance of workshops located in historic Triana.


Manises, a town in Valencia, has continued to produce exceptional painted tiles and patterned plates since the fourteenth century. There is even a museum in the area dedicated to this handicraft.

Fans:
The colorful and intricate designs of the Spanish fan (abanicos) has made it one of the most well know Spanish crafts.  Madrid is home to many shops that still create these fans by hand.

Guitars:

Granada is the main source of guitar production in Spain.  Handmade guitars are well known for their high quality artisan-ship and as musical accompaniments to the Spanish Flamenco.

 

Hand Made Lace:

Spain offers some of the finest handmade lace you can find.  It is here that you will find a style of handmade lace called Tenerife.  Named for the area in which it was first created, this delicate craft has been handed down mother to daughter and generation-to-generation.

Jewelry:

Damascene is the Morrish art of inlaying silver or gold threads into steel creating a decorative pattern. In Toledo you can watch artisans create fine jewelry made using this traditional process.

Salamanca is the home of the charro button and other filigrana charra crafts, which are fashioned from pieces of silver and used to decorate traditional costumes.

Leather:

Cordoba is where you will find cordobanes and guadamecies, luxury molded and colored leather that is handmade in the few remaining family owned workshops.

 

Once peasant footwear, Espadrilles from Mallorca are recognized worldwide for their excellent quality and craftsmanship.

 

 

Bellows are used for stoking fires and, along with wineskins and other leather goods, remains one of the most popular craft items in Basque Country.

Wooden Clogs:

Cantabria is where you will find albarcas, handmade wooden clogs, and considered the ideal shoe for the humid climate in northern Spain.

Take your purchase back to the US VAT free!

U.S. citizens flying home from Spain may be entitled to a Value Added Tax (VAT) Refund.  To claim this refund:  (1) Look for shops that display a “Tax Free” sign (2) let the shop keeper know you would like a “Tax Free” invoice (3) Claim your refund at the Customs office before you check your bags.

Purchase rules and conditions will apply and more information can be found using the links below:

http://www.aena.es/en/barcelona-airport/vat-refund.html

http://www.aena.es/en/madrid-barajas-airport/vat-refund.html

 

More information about the regions and handicrafts of Spain can be found by visiting the Tourism Office of Spain at http://www.spain.info/en/

 

*All photos courtesy of the Tourist Office of Spain

Beth

Beth Becker has more than 15 years’ experience in the travel/hospitality and meetings industry.  She is an experienced project manager and has been a key player in high visibility, enterprise-wide training, meetings and events for numerous Fortune 500 Clients.  Beth is active in the Meeting community, nominated for MPI Meeting Planner of the year in 2009 and currently serving as a moderator for MeCo and a Global Correspondent and Talent Bench member for i-Meet, the online business community for people who plan meetings and events.  In addition, Beth works full time as the Global Meeting Services Manager for MicroTek a leader in Managed Training Solutions.  You can connect with Beth via Linkedin.

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