Thursday, November 12, 2015

These city souvenirs are the perfect way to
mark a trip.
Shanghai sits at the juxtaposition of traditional and
modern China, a meeting point of historical curiosities and innovative
design.
These five presents range from traditional trinkets and time-honored
brands, to contemporary takes on longstanding customs—and they make the
perfect gift if you're wondering what to buy in Shanghai.
Pinyin Press Wearables Inspired by everyday Shanghai-scenes, Pinyin (the
Romanized writing system for Mandarin) Press produces a collection of items
with iconic, hand-drawn illustrations, graphics, and prints.
From crockery
bedecked in boazi (steamed buns) to t-shirts with the famous lucky cat emblem,
this company bridges the gap between traditional Chinese motifs and
contemporary life in the city.
This year, they teamed up with Wobabybasics to
create children's apparel adorned with a festive noodle bowl pattern (noodles
are commonly eaten to celebrate birthdays or to signify longevity).
Made from
organic cotton, they're available in a bright palette of colors, in sizes from
newborn to eight years old.
Find the full Pinyin Press collection at Madame
Mao's Dowry Cob Originals This cheeky casualwear design company
playfully fuses Eastern and Western concepts to create comfortable t-shirts
and sweaters, as well as accessories.
The bold, and at times brazen, designs
include mischievous wordplay using English catchphrases and Chinese
characters.
Favorites are "Don't give a 事"(shì –meaning nonsensical
attitude), "You're too mafan" (troublesome), and "Frankie says 放松" (most
people can probably guess that one...).
A playful introduction to Mandarin,
these designs will be sure to get people talking.
You can browse the COB
ORIGINALS collection at their studio (Room 202, Building 3, 764 Changle Road,
near Fumin Road), but we advise calling ahead Piling Palang This company
combines traditional Chinese ceramic, cloisonné, lacquer and paper artwork
with a vivid color scheme and contemporary influences from around the
world.
Each piece is created by skilled craftsmen, following ancient design
techniques, yet would not look out of place in a modern home anywhere.
The
cloisonné vase was inspired by a Chinese lantern and is made with intricately
cut metal and enamel, before being fired in a kiln.
Piling Palang products can
be picked up at one of the brand's stores in Shanghai.
White Rabbit Candies This Shanghai "time-honored brand," meaning it has a
history of at least 50 years, and supposedly possesses strong Chinese
characteristics and distinct regional features.
It has a special place in the
hearts of many of the city's adult residents, being the confectioner of choice
for most Chinese youngsters growing up in previous decades.
The creamy, milky
candies are easy to pack, and White Rabbit candies can be picked up in most
convenience stores around the city.
Emperor Fan This moon-shaped fan was originally used by nobles, though
ultimately came to be known as the reunion fan, and was exchanged between
friends and family members over time.
The fans at Zen Lifestore come from
neighboring Suzhou, and are made using silk and bamboo, with each creation
having a unique double-sided, hand-embroidered design.
The perfect gift for
sinophiles, you can choose from a selection of emperor fan designs at Zen
Lifestore.
Nyima Pratten lives in Shanghai and covers the city for Travel +
Leisure.
Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.
Five gifts from Shanghai that make the perfect present.

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