Whilst some of us are just about recovering from Halloween parties and looking forward to a seasonal fireworks display at the end of the week, some retailers are streaking ahead to Christmas. As always Selfridges in London are leading the pack with their annual festive window displays, unveiled two weeks ago at their flagship store in London.
However, in the case of Selfridges annual offering, it might not be a case of ‘Christmas come early’ as the store tends to treat their visual displays as individual artistic creations, rather than traditional festive forays full of Christmas trees and tinsel. Also – unlike many of their competitors – none of the displays feature a single product from the store’s vast range, as a spokesman from Selfridges explained to the Daily Mail:
“We are lucky that way, most stores don’t have a space like this and we can’t think of a better way to use it. It becomes more of an art installation, which is far more attractive to customers.”
The theme for this year’s window display is the rather unfestive ‘signs of the zodiac’ – but Selfridges do have a motive behind this unusual idea, as their spokesperson explains:
“It’s…a modern Christmas, we wanted to create a global Christmas because we are a global store and for many people, Christmas doesn’t necessarily mean tradition.
“Customers do have a certain expectation when it comes to our windows but at the same time we want to make them unexpected and exciting.”
One British designer who is very excited to be involved in the project – creating two of the windows in the display – is rising fashion star, Lara Jensen – a designer and Milliner who has designed creations for the likes of Lady Gaga and Kylie Minogue.
Lara’s initial design – based on the theme of the zodiac sign Aries – impressed Selfridge’s window display team so much that they asked her to create an additional Aquarius-themed window as well – and Lara was thrilled:
“I was absolutely taken aback when they asked me,” she said.
“I have been very lucky to work with some amazing people in my career, but to work with such a renowned store is something else. I have always wanted to have some sort of association with Selfridges because it was the first big department store in England and has such a massive reputation. I wanted to use the opportunity to do something wonderful and beautiful.”
“There is quite a lot of pressure because, at the end of the day, there will be hundreds of thousands of people walking past it, I think it will take a few weeks of me seeing it not to have any niggles about it because I am always like that with my work, but I have been very lucky.”
You can check out Lara’s work in two of the Selfridges window displays from now, right through until the end of December. And although they aren’t specifically Christmas themed, we think that they still look very festive with lots of sparkle and colour. Of course this Christmas is going to be pretty space-themed anyway, with the release of the seventh Star Wars movie at the beginning of December – although Selfridges Creative director, Linda Hewson told the Mail that this was nothing more than a happy coincidence and not one of the driving factors behind their choice of theme.
So, if you’re heading to London for some Christmas shopping, take a look for yourself and let us know what you think of the designs…