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Among the numerous shops in Beijing featuring Tibetan handicrafts, Heavenly Eyes is one of the best. It is easily accessible, located just a few steps south of the Lama Temple on Yong He Gong Street.

Inside, I found 3 rooms which house every type of Tibetan handicraft imaginable. Once I entered, I felt like being in Tibet. The oval black and white stones in the inner room quickly caught my eyes. As I examined them, the owner came and told me that these stones are called Tianzhu stones. They are used to make bracelets and necklaces.

He went on to tell me about the stories behind them. There are lots of legends about this magic and rare stone. One is that it was used by other celestial bodies as a communication to the people on the earth. Another believed that it was endowed by a Goddess to ward off diseases and spirits. All Tibetans believe that Tianzhu stone can bring people luck and happiness.

Also available in the shop are Thangkas, colorful handicrafts, and Tibetan style fashion accessories.

The owner is a friendly Tibetan, who has learned to speak some English during his 7 years at the shop.

So be sure to follow the Chinese tradition, and haggle with him!

What I appreciate:
Real Tibetan things represent its history and culture

What customers appreciate:
Lots of choose from, reasonable prices


The craft of clay sculpturing has a recorded history of more than 3,000 years in China, and still popular today. For clay figures with a Beijing touch, you can visit XiaoZhang Clay Sculpture on WangFuJing Street, named after the shop owner. The owner himself makes all the figurines, with designs such as old Beijingers, animals, local gate towers, and courtyards, reflecting the cultural characteristics of traditional Beijing.

The owner told me that his goat sculpture (RMB 128)is his favorite work. The goat is painted with peony flowers, and has a pair of oversize golden horns. The animal represents kindness, peace, and harmony in Chinese minds. The design was even featured on Chinese stamps for the year of the Goat in 2003! Definitely a marvelous piece of work.

Prices for the handmade sculptures range from RMB 5 to RMB 800. The demand is high, so you may need to pre-order certain figures.

What I appreciate

Various clay sculptures from great craftsmanship

What customers appreciate

Various clay sculptures from great craftsmanship


The merchandise offered at Minority Story all came from the traditional craftsmanship of minority ethnic groups in China. Located in the Qianmachang Hutong of Xicheng District, the shop covers only about 30 square meters and looks more like a Beijinger's home. With the lovely cushions on sofas, exquisite bowls on the dinner table, gorgeous tapestries hanging on the wall, you can see exactly how the merchandise would look in your own house.

The shop owner is an expert on minor nationalities' handicrafts, with over 10 years of experience. She pointed out to me one of her best works on display, a Thousand-Hand Guan-Yin embroidered tapestry made from the finest Hasake wool. Priced at RMB 2888, this embroidery is the most expensive item in the shop.

The prices range from RMB 12 for a pottery bowl up to RMB 2888 for the tapestry. The shop owner cannot speak English, so you'd need an interpreter if you want to know the stories behind the merchandise.

What I appreciate

Various folk crafts

What customers appreciate

Great gift items, great designs


Those of us who keep journals or diaries can be pretty picky when it comes to picking out the right notebook. And that is where Xingmu Handicrafts comes in. This shop offers over a hundred types of handmade notebooks, all made from craft paper with a single cotton thread binding the pages.

You can tell that the three shop founders are very passionate about Chinese paintings from the book covers. The pictures on the cover, all drawn by the shop owners themselves, look absolutely amazing with designs based on Chinese brush-painting and paper-cutting. The top selling notebook has a Beijing opera mask on the cover. Definitely a unique design that you can enjoy looking at every day.

The price for a common notebook is RMB 10, while even the most expensive notebook costs only RMB 30. The guys can speak a little English, and can certainly talk to you about their designs.

What I appreciate

Notebooks with various covers

What customers appreciate

Great looking covers

Beijing pictures, Mao Le Wu

Do you love cats? If you do, you¡¯ll find an interesting gift shop on the Gulou Dongdajie named Mao Le Wu (Cat Fun Room). The shop specializes in various cat-shaped handicrafts such as purses, saving boxes, and decorative trinkets.


Their products are divided into two categories: fabric cats and porcelain cats. Most cost less than RMB 20. With such cute designs and low price, these items make great presents for friends, especially kids.


Apart from cat-shaped articles, you can find gourd bottles with Beijing opera facial make-up on sale as well. According the shop owner, they are painted by an old folk artist, and customers can only buy this type of handicrafts at Cat¡¯s Fun Room.


What I appreciate

Small handicrafts about cat, gourds with facial make-up in Beijing opera, inexpensive prices.


What customers appreciate

Inexpensive gifts in the shape of cat.


At the Top Century Commodity Transaction Market, there is a small shop specializing in small handicrafts. It is named Taoyuan.


Most of the cute handicrafts there are homemade. On the walls, several hundreds of mini colorful pendants. A miniature image in ancient clothes only cost RMB 3. The price for a Beijing opera mask is RMB 15. A small woodcutting gourd costs RMB 10. Also on display:  red, beautiful Chinese knots in different sizes.


All these small, fine handicrafts are really fit for gifts or souvenirs.


What customers appreciate

Small and fine handicrafts, traditional Chinese works of art, exquisite workmanship, inexpensive prices.

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Beijing Shopping: The beautiful Tibetan handicrafts is going to surprise you.