Shop Local This Holiday Season!
Wondering where to find unique gifts by local artists this holiday season? Thinking, is there a souvenir shop near me? Well, the answer may be right around the corner! Neighbourhoods like Kensington Market, The Junction, Bloordale, Riverside and The Distillery District all play host to many local makers and creatives working from home studios, collaborative arts spaces, retail stores or in local galleries.
We’ve listed a few Toronto-based spaces for you to visit this season where you’ll find the best in Toronto shopping for handmade local goods!
Artists and Makers with Studios
Toronto Artist and Arts Market vendor Natalie Draz tells a beautiful story of the city’s unique neighborhoods through her colourful pop-up works. These handmade creations make great Toronto souvenirs and keepsakes that capture the liveliness of TO’s busy streets and landmarks. They’re a perfect gift for any city explorer! In addition to Arts Market, you can also find Natalie’s work at Proof Studio Gallery located in the Distillery District. And while you’re there, the nearby Toronto Christmas Market makes a nice stop for seasonal festivities as well.
You’ve probably seen Gotamago‘s gorgeous and whimsical watercolour products in local boutiques and shops all over town (including our Riverside location). With artist, Lichia at the helm the Gotamago team have a storefront and studio space in the Danforth and Woodbine area; we recommend popping in for a browse where a friendly team (including a lovely shop doggo!) will welcome you to the space. Visit Gotamago.com for more information on their classes and events.
Unique Markets and Gift Shops in Toronto
Hundreds of practicing artists showcase their creations at one of many respected holiday markets over the winter: some mainstays being the aforementioned Distillery Christmas Market, and the Nathan Phillips Fair in the Square and Evergreen Brickworks’ Sunday Artisan Market. These are all long-standing events that house a massive array of handmade goods from Canada-based artisans. They’re all selective in their vendor vetting, and so you’ll find a diverse mix of quality products!
If you’re looking for something more niche, some gift shops in the city revolve around a specific process of art making.
For example: Kid Icarus in Kensington Market is a print-centric gift shop that focuses on local printmakers and illustrators, as well as printmaking services and classes.
The Craft Ontario Shop as part of a not-for-profit, membership-based organization that helps support local designers and makers through their membership opportunities, alongside having a retail showroom with featured artisans.