What to buy:
If you are really fond of ceramics and are going to Capadocia in the same trip, check first the prices in Istanbul, compare them with those in Capadocia and then decide.
As most of the pieces are made there, prices use to be more convinient in Capadocia.
Anyway, you will probably have to return to Istanbul to take your plane back, so you will be able to buy tham at Istanbul at the very last moment. The Bazaars around Hagia Sophia are a good place to look for it.
I was recently in Istanbul, Turkey and on the first day happened upon a ceramic shoppe near my hotel. I have always appreciated ceramics and it was very easy to tell right away that this store had very fine quality ceramic pieces. I was very tempted to buy and did! The staff were extremely friendly and knowledgeable about their products [ceramics] and their history . All the ceramics are made for their store by the staff and many pieces are traditional but also it is evident that the staff are encouraged to create 'art', as one can find unusual ceramics not seen elsewhere in Turkey. There are three floors to the building and each floor gets better as you ascend the stairs.
You were never pushed to purchase an item and were free to browse as you wished. I visited many ceramic stores while I was in Turkey but always returned to this excellent store
for quality. They have tiles, dishes,bowls,teapots ,seasonal decorations, etc. and even a outdoor stove!
Their address is:Tugra Ceramic Handicraft Center,
Atmeydani Cad. No: 78,
Tel 516 43 43-44
Fax: 516 43 45
Well worth the visit. I will return on my next visit.
Tugra Ceramics claims to produce only ceramics of the highest quality and to make authentic relicas of tiles and other adornments from the major mosques and palaces in Turkey.
The owners include an American educated guy called Chris Kitrinos of Turkish/Greek parentage.
He's a real nice guy, very helpful and informative and NOT hard sell.
The quality of their goods is so impressive that you will probably buy anyway.
We have a passion for quality ceramics and porcelain and the shop has a huge range of ceramics from tiles, plates, dishes, figurines and vases of every shape and colour.
having spoken to and visited several other ceramics shops, i believe their story that their products come from their own caramics factories in the eastern half of Turkey where only the best quality clays are found. That their wares are authentic reproductions of tiles etc from Turkish palaces and mosques is difficult to authenticate, but who cares. They are strikingly beautiful and very reasonably priced at half what you might pay for a Royal Doulton.
What to buy: There are many ceramics shops in Istanbul but personally, i'm more comfortable with this one than any of the dozens of other shops that we visited.
What to pay: Well yes.
I guess you can pay as little as EU50 for a small plate or figurine and up to EU1,000 for a large bowl.
You can buy ceramic household items like bowls, vases, plates, pitchers, jugs, cups, mugs, coasters etc.
What to pay: Bargain a lot! We paid about 50 USD for a set of ceramic coasters that were medium sized and had a lot of work on it. There are plain versions too with just the design without the embossed effect which cost less.
İznik pottery, named after the town in western Anatolia where it was made, is a decorated ceramic that was produced from the last quarter of the 15th century until the end of the 17th century.
The town of Iznik was an established centre for the production of simple earthenware pottery with an underglaze decoration when in the last quarter of the 15th century, craftsmen in the town began to manufacture high quality pottery with a fritware body painted with cobalt blue under a colourless lead glaze. The meticulous designs combined traditional Ottoman arabesque patterns with Chinese elements. The change was almost certainly a result of the active intervention and patronage by the recently established Ottoman court in Istanbul who greatly valued Chinese blue-and-white porcelain.
Fritware is still produced at Kutahya, about 200 km south of Istanbul, principally for the tourist trade and in imitation of Iznik ware.
What to pay: Depends on the size and quality of the ceramic and the pottery.
What to buy: An assortment of plates & mugs which could fill up your kitchen in no time! I was crazy enough once to buy more than enough plates for a party & mugs that I wouldn't have to wash them for an entire month or even more! I know, it's madness... but I love the feel of those glass & porcelain in my hands & the colors, gosh... they sure brighten up my day!
You will find many levels of ceramic tiles in Istanbul, from machine-made to entirely handpainted. The tree of life in the photo that my husband purchased is an example of the latter..
You have little shops of all kinds of ceramisc ( cups,plates...) everywhere . They are very colorful and nice for souveners and gifts .
What to buy: Everywhere I go I try finding myself a perfect cup :)
What to buy: Ceramics is a good idea for souvenirs. There's a lot of variety and styles, and the colors are beautiful too.