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Venice Gifts and Souvenirs
Carnival masks and glow-in-the-dark gondolas may be hard to resist, but don't ignore practical purchases--especially if you're on a budget.

Fines for Fakes
"Let the buyer beware" has a new meaning in Italy, where purchasing a Prada knockoff or a pirated CD could cost you an extra 3,333 to 10,000 euros.

Illegal Street Vendors
Phony designer handbags are the main stock in trade for the vu compra (immigrant Senegalese peddlers who sell from blankets in the street).

Carnival Masks

Carnival Masks
Whether you're headed for Carnevale or enjoying it vicariously at home, you can learn about Venetian Carnival masks--and even order them online.

Maschere experts Federica and Giancarlo are passionate about the craft of handpainted masks--both the kind you wear and the type you hang on a wall. (From our Venice Travel Blog.)

Embroidery and Needlework

"The most romantic shop in Venice" is the kind of place where you'd expect to find Martha Stewart shopping for bargains in dresses, embroidered nightgowns, children's clothing, bags, and accessories. (From our Venice Travel Blog.)

Food and Wine

I Tre Mercanti
This may be the best Italian wine and food shop in Venice. If you're buying wine in bulk, ask about VAT-free shipping with customs duty prepaid.

Venice Supermarkets
In recent years, supermercati have spread throughout the city. Here are several brands to look for, with tips on how to shop.

Glass and beads

Murano, the Glass Island
In 1296, the glassblowers of Venice moved to an island called Murano. Seven hundred years later, their descendants are still turning sand into gold. (Plan your trip to Murano with this 11-page Murano Travel Guide.)

Artisan Muriel Balensi makes glass beads or perle the old-fashioned way: With canes of Murano glass, a gas burner, and hand tools.

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