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The Festive Fashion Windows of Belfast


With fashion retail, comes visual merchandising. I could talk about visual merchandising all day long, from the perfectly posed mannequins to the eccentric theatrics creating a stage on the high street. Retailers are keen to grab our attention and communicate the brand image, throwing modern techniques such as digital screens and social media into the mix. Video fashion shows and hashtags are slowly creeping into our window shopping routine. But with all these advancements in fashion visual merchandising, the big question is did Belfast live up the mark this year? Yes, but with the contemporary displays came the old school glamour and downright quirky, bringing a little more depth and imagination to what could have been a host of simply festive windows.




Marks Spencer


A few days before Christmas Marks and Spencer had a combination of windows luring over the busy streets of panicked shoppers. One included glossy oversized bow wrapped gifts, another featured a screen playing a video of M&S's latest fashion while the most extravagant of all displayed three impeccably dressed mannequins with fully bloomed orange petal wigs. What I have always loved about the Marks & Spencer mannequins is there life-like poses, it looks like they are genuinely hanging out together in the window. This particular window was to advertise the pre-Christmas sale, it certainly got my attention with its playful colour palette and stylish simplicity.




River Island


River Island incorporated Christmas into their window this season but kept to the fashionable cool the brand represents. The slogan 'Style is Not Just for Christmas' was used with a party wear backdrop. The display was finished with a posh dog and cat decal sticker, giving the feel of a high-end street in London or some other prestigious city. The smart play on the phrase is one that stands out, and although I am obsessed with Christmas, it was refreshing to see a retailer have an alternative approach. It would, of course, be a sad scene if all retailers had a window that had so little festive presence.




New Look


New Look did festive but with a cool edgy vibe. The icy tones were brought to life with the sharp striking collective of snowflakes, glitter backdrop and blue linear lighting. The mannequins were dressed in trendy clothing with black and grey colours dominating the window, fitting in with the overall theme. The window was a head turner with all the bells and whistles. It shows the new range well while instilling that festive feeling. 




Ted Baker


Always outstanding in the areas of creativity, theatrics and creating a buzz, Ted Baker in Victoria Square have created an original and interactive window display this Christmas. The 'Abominable Snowman' is a seasonal marketing campaign, where you can go online, pick a song and take a selfie, with the end result being your face placed on the snowman's body while it sings a holiday song. This fun yet eccentric concept was highlighted in their window display using the link tedbaker.com/tedpresents to encourage passers-by to get involved. Not to mention, the snowman's tongue was moving, which added to the fun factor. Well done Ted, well done.


Local Boutique Alert!



I wanted to give a special mention to Peel Boutique situated on Bloomfield Avenue Belfast. They shared their stylish winter wonderland on social media where they impressively incorporated their fashionable high-end pieces with the Hollywood glamour festive setup.  The boutique commented:

"It was all done from scratch, with wrapped up boxes, all three floors are decorated." 

To see more follow them on Instagram @peelfashion.


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