The Azores most famous handicraft is Scrimshaw and Peter Sport Cafe in Horta on Faial contains one of the best collections in the world. The museum entrance is in the back of the restaurant.

Peter Sport Café in Horta

Peter Sport Café in Horta

Next to the café there is a gift shop where the merchandise ranges from kitsch to expensive Scrimshaw pocket knives.

In the quayside cabins (in front of Peter Sport Café) I found a gift shop selling patchwork bags, wall hangings, t-shirts, pot holders, etc., but nothing that would be unique to the Azores.

These were the only two gift shops I saw in Horta indicating the souvenir industry on the Azores is still underdeveloped!

The best souvenir shop we found in the country side near Capelo (western coastline). There we found a market with some handcrafted merchandise contributed by the locals. It was run like a village co-op which we had already seen in villages on Crete and in the Provence. In these kind of markets one can find some unusual or very traditional handmade gifts such as this one:

Hand-crocheted toilet paper hat

... a hand-crocheted toilet paper hat!

I could not believe my eyes when I saw local artisans still crocheted these toilet paper hats! I bought one right away and knew I would have to give this lovely present to my brother, who would surely remember the days of swaying dog heads (in German: Wackeldackel) and toilet paper hats decorating the car’s rear view area. I believe the Wackeldackel fashion started in the mid- or late sixties whereas the fashionable portable decorative toilet paper roll found its way into the German heart and car by the early seventies. This present was a true find on the Azores!!! It is hard to imagine they are still being made.

Back in the sixties, all we had was an out house on the farm, and only the printed newspaper was available to us. When I was a child, this little thing in other people’s cars looked like pure luxury and smelled of French sophistication… I think it was meant as a symbol for showing off in-door plumbing at home.

And yes, my brother got a big kick out of his present.

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