Sunday, November 4, 2007

Isadong, Isadong.. my how you have changed...

Isadong is an 'arty' area of Seoul. It's near one of the ancient palaces and various cultural sites. When I first went there in the early 1990's...(this is my third time to live in Korea) it was a quiet shopping experience, walking around-getting diverted from the main street to shopping among the side streets, stopping at various shops full of hand-crafted items, looking over the wares outside the shops and by the street vendors. When you got tired- you could find a tranquil out of the way 'tea house' to sit and have a restful drink and you'd emerge renewed.

Well, when I went on Saturday only the 2nd or 3rd time in the past two years.. I was amazed at the changes. My first clue was the 'tourist buses' zooming down the 'what I had always assumed' were CLOSED TO TRAFFIC shopping street. The weather was a sunny fall day, with a greater variety of colors on the leaves on the Isadong area ginkgo trees than the changes that are currently seen on the ginkgo trees in my neighborhood.
These are the trees at the entrance to the Isadong shopping area.

Across the street from the subway stop and also the entrance to Isadong.

You'll find lots of art galleries, traditional Korean celedon, hand crafted ceramics, handmade papers, traditional masks, and a variety of other handcrafted items.
Hand carved wooden scoops. Humm, maybe I should have bought one for my sugar container?

Some jewelry being sold outside along the street.

Several shops sell the big calligraphy brushes. I love the way that they look, but they are very expensive.

Maybe you need a brass Buddha statue?

Or a wooden hand-carved cup? I'd use it as a pencil cup- but, I'm sure it has a real purpose that I'm unaware of.. ????

Or maybe.. you need a soft pencil case with a traditional knotted tassel? I use them to store my double pointed knitting needles and other various small knitting
notions. Actually, I've used them for many things throughout the years.

I enjoyed my day walking around with my friend- going here and there... even though it was full of tourists and you had to constantly watch out for vehicles and buses zooming down the main shopping street.

Don't forget to visit my blog tomorrow and you'll get to see photos of what I purchased.


Marykz said...

I love seeing these interesting pictures of the markets.

iwouldratherbeknitting said...

Thanks for responding- it's a lot of fun to shop in the markets- you never know what you'll find!