The most magical Christmas window displays of 2017

It’s the time of the year again. There is the smell and sight of Christmas in the air, and the world’s most famous stores are indulging in their usual rivalry to create the most amazing and most magical window displays. From New York to London to Paris, an explosion of creativity is on display. And here is where the find this year’s most wonderful windows.

 

 

 

1. Saks Fifth Avenue, New York City, USA

For this Christmas, Saks Fifth Avenue goes back in time to a classic tale. Honouring the 80th anniversary of Walt Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the store’s 14 windows have been filled with animated scenes re-telling the classic animated movie. However, Saks’ high fashion credentials haven’t been abandoned either; some windows showcase fairy tale creations by designers like Alberta Ferretti, Naeem Khan, Monique Lhuillier and Marchesa. So relive the eternal tale in glorious detail by watching Snow White frolick with her adorable furry friends through the forest, while the seven dwarfs sing their catchy Hi-Ho song and the Evil Queen plots with her basket of apples.

Saks Fifth Avenue

2. Barneys, New York City, USA

Designed by the Haas twins Simon and Nikolai, Barneys’ 2017 Christmas display is decidedly non-traditional. Titled ‘Haas for the Holidays’, the windows depict a surrealistic journey from the creation of the earth through the present and into the future. Celebrating individuality, inclusiveness and love – with a touch of environmentalism – the windows are most importantly also fun to look at. Primordial starts with volcanoes and cellular lifeforms evolving in the soup of life, moving into Utopia – a grassland scene with Rainbow Baggins the zebra and his friend Rhino-na Wyder, all the way into Millenium that imagines a digital forest. Our favourite is the cute and futuristic Mushroom Singularity, an alien-like diorama of dreamlike mushrooms that includes an incredible visual pun – a shiny star with the phrase ‘Sun body loves you’!

Barneys

3. Harrods, London, UK

Unusually for Harrods, which typically features a long-list of luxury brands in its Christmas windows, this year’s festive displays are dedicated to one: Dolce & Gabbana. Signori Stefano Gabbana and Domenico Dolce spent some £7 million to take over all 23 windows of Harrods, filling it to the brim with their products. From T-shirts to key fobs and Smeg kitchen appliances to haute couture gowns, each window is accompanied by adorable puppets of Stefano and Domenico celebrating the holidays in their trademark way. Continuing the theme inside Harrods itself is a space designed as an Italian market to hawk Dolce & Gabbana products, which include a special capsule women’s and menswear collection and a fine-jewellery pop-up boutique.

Harrods

4. Fortnum & Mason, London, UK

The venerable London grocer’s Christmas windows always contain a touch of whimsy and this year is no exception. Titled ‘Together we are merrier’ – a sly dig at the ongoing Brexit negotiations, perhaps? – the windows see a menagerie of animals working together to transport goods from far and wide to create Fortnum & Mason’s famed Christmas hampers. Hand-painted and meticulously crafted, each window also represents a key moment from the holidays – from a joyful pink elephant popping a Champagne cork to a polar bear/penguin duo delivering Christmas cards to everyone gathering around the dinner table.

Fortnum & Mason

5. Galeries Lafayatte Haussmann, Paris, France

The centrepiece of Galeries Lafayette’s annual Christmas decorations every year is the massive tree that hangs from its cupola. This year the theme is funfair, and the tree is now a giant inflated croquembouche – a pile of macarons, candy, doughnuts, biscuits, chocolates and all manner of sweet treats. The theme continues into its windows along Boulevard Haussmann. Titled ‘Spectacular, Spectacular’, it follows a race between Pierre, the hero pigeon, and his sweetheart, Coco the gentle dove, as they fly through gloriously-detailed scenes of ferris wheels, circuses, roller coasters, hot air balloons, fairground claw machines and snow-dusted scenes of Paris.

Galeries Lafayette, Haussmann

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Published December 1, 2017
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