Unique Disneyland Shopping
Time for Something Special
A rare trip to Disneyland is an occasion that calls for a special souvenir to honor a special vacation. Finding unique memorabilia can be tricky, particularly when the same merchandise keeps popping up in store after store throughout the theme park. Many of the mass market items stacked on store end caps in every land show little distinction from typical Disney-branded items that can be readily found in local stores all across America.
Once upon a time, there was a shop in Disneyland’s New Orleans Square that specialized in unique gifts and could be counted on for unusual and treasured finds. Unfortunately, the One of a Kind shop was closed years ago and was never replaced with a store of a similar caliber. In recent years, Disney has been making an effort to create more park-specific and even land-specific merchandise, and with some success, but there are better options available for truly unique Disneyland shopping.
Disney Shopping Treasures on Amazon
Limited Edition Artisan Watches can be purchased for $250. Although these cannot be personalized, they are highly desired pieces that often accrue value over time. Each sells for $250 and comes with a reproduction of the original artwork used to create the watch face.
For a unique gift at a fraction of the price, Disney enthusiasts may order personalized watches from Disney’s online store site. These are not available for purchase within the Disneyland Resort, and the range of customization is far more limited. While these timepieces don’t carry the cachet of a Fortuosity Shop Original Watch, they do provide a more affordable personalized option at $35 to $100 each, and can be a lovely commemoration of the time spent on a Disney vacation.
The Emporium is a large gift shop located on Main Street. Guests buzz about this store, snapping up mugs, pencils, shirts, key chains and antenna toppers as tokens from their trip. Were these guests to meander to the other side of the Emporium and through a hall, past an alcove selling children’s wares, they would end up in a much smaller shop offering far more interesting pieces. This is the Fortuosity Shop, the closest thing to a One of a Kind shop descendant to be found in the park.
In a previous incarnation, this was the site of New Century Timepieces, a shop dedicated to clocks and watches, featuring highly-prized, hand-drawn, personalized watches. Although the shop has altered its focus somewhat and sports a new name, unique watches are still available for the guest who values a treasured remembrance for a treasured vacation. Guests design an Original Watch from the Fortuosity Shop by first selecting a character and a background from the shop’s portfolio. Next, the desired personalization, such as a name, date or other detail, is added, and a skilled Disney watch artist combines the elements to create a finished piece. The completed artwork is then scaled down to the appropriate size to serve as a watch face, and the final face and bezel is assembled by hand. With a price tag of $500, an Original Watch is an exceptional keepsake to cherish for a lifetime, and comes complete with the original artwork used to make the piece.
Profiles in Paper
One of the most unique gifts in all of Disneyland just happens to also be one of the most inexpensive. Everyone has photographs of themselves, but comparatively few have their image captured in silhouette. No memento could be more personal than having your likeness portrayed in this art form hearkening back to the turn of the 20th century.
The ladies in the Silhouette Studio on Main Street provide this service quickly and beautifully. Using black paper and sharp scissors, artists skilled in the craft capture your profile in hand-cut paper with precision. The whole process takes only about a minute. Just watching them create these masterpieces with ease is a joy to experience.
At nine dollars per profile, it’s a true bargain. Guests receive two identical copies of each silhouette for that price. Perfectly sized oval frames are available for purchase in the studio. A double silhouette (two people in one image) can even include a favorite Disney character. You can bring home a full-sized, framed individual silhouette for under twenty dollars, or a miniature version for $15. That’s not much at all for a timeless image to recall a special day.
Your Home, Your Castle
Talk about a UNIQUE Disney purchase: How's this?!
The Disney Gallery, located on Main Street next to the Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln attraction, displays artwork created by Disney Imagineers depicting past and future concepts for Disney projects. Here, guests can purchase beautiful works of art to take home. Limited edition giclées and high quality prints are available, as well as other merchandise not generally found elsewhere in the Disneyland resort. Guests will find works by renowned artists such as Shag, Mark Seppala and Jeremy Fulton.
Animation cels, heirloom boxes and limited edition figurines can be found in the Disneyana store on Main Street, and more can be found in the Off The Page shop across the way inside Disney’s California Adventure. You may even bring home Sleeping Beauty Castle!
If a trip to Disneyland is a rare pleasure, don’t settle for a hum-drum souvenir. Select a remembrance as unique and special as your trip for a lifetime of fond recollections.
© M.S. Ross - All Rights Reserved
Your Turn: Treasured Souvenirs
What is the most unique or unusual item you've purchased at Disneyland? Was it something made especially for you, or a limited edition item, or a mass-produced item that was available only on a particular day in the park? Perhaps the item was selected in remembrance of a particularly special occasion. Share your memories of your own treasured Disney trinkets in the comments.
Join the Fun!
Cheshire Cat Disappears...and Tells Time!
FOLLOW -UP NOTE: Via BoingBoing, I have just discovered a wonderful concept design for a pocket watch designed by Cory Doctorow. Mix the grace of old-style timepieces with today's technology; throw in an homage to one of my favorite literary characters, the Cheshire Cat from Alice in Wonderland, and you get this awesome pocketwatch. See how the timepiece works in these animated gifs. Yes, I'd happily accept one, thank you. - M.S. Ross
More Disneyland Articles by Miss Mellie
- Retroland: Disneyland Through the Ages - Part 1
Each visit to Disneyland brings something new and different to experience. This means that, for better or worse, certain attractions come and go over the years. Here's a look at some Disneyland attractions of the past.
- Retroland: Disneyland Through the Ages Part 2: Frontierland
In this installment of Retroland, well saddle up for a look at the uniquely designed attractions that established Frontierlands Western identity: the Pack Mules, the Rainbow Caverns, the Rainbow Caverns Mine Train and Natures Wonderland.
- Disneyland's Hidden Gems
A look at some hidden treasures within Disneyland with some history behind these lesser-known features. A secret club, two private apartments and a special railroad parlor car are among the gems that visitors to the park never discover.
- Disneyland Tips for Families
A little advance planning and forethought can lay the foundation for a wonderful experience for all family members that will create cherished memories to last a lifetime.