I went to Asheville today to see what was “new” in my favorite vintage places, and also to check out the Christmas windows. It had never occurred to me that Asheville might have great holiday windows, but I saw in the newspaper that there had been a design contest on the theme “A Star is Born,” and I felt I owed it to myself to see them. I had no illusions that the Saks and Bergdorf’s and Macy’s windows were facing stiff competition, but for a small city like Asheville I thought the display was pretty impressive.
Over the past twenty years, the civic leaders in Asheville have worked hard to revitalize downtown. After most of the stores and restaurants abandoned the area and relocated at the mall, downtown Asheville was a rather scary place. Only a few stores were able to hold on. But they did, and slowly they were joined by other urban pioneers. Today downtown Asheville is a wonderful place to shop and eat. Best of all, almost all the businesses are locally owned.
But enough bragging on my little city. Here is a tour of some of my favorite windows.
This window was made entirely of layers of cut paper. It really was a showstopper. Note that there is no product to be found! This was one of the windows at
Sensibilities Day Spa.
This sock monkey carolers window was at the yarn shop, Purl’s Yarn Emporium.
Windows are really hard to photograph, so I’m sorry about the quality of this one at clothing store, Caravans.
I cannot resist polar bears.
This is one of the windows at Spiritex, which is a clothing store. All the clothing is made here in Western North Carolina.
This is one of four star windows at the Chevron Trading Post. These stars are made of paper and they are stunning.
This is the window at Mountain Lights, which is a seller of locally made candles and crafts.
Hip Replacements had a retro theme and won the Judges’ Favorite prize. They sell retro and vintage clothing.
I couldn’t help but notice that some of the most effective windows I saw today were the ones that featured only a few, or even one product. Some of the windows that I did not photograph looked like windows from the turn of the 20th century where shopkeepers piled the windows high with as much merchandise as possible. I think people are attracted to visual clutter (like the star windows) but the clutter has to make sense. Trying to show everything in the shop is just confusing.
So, what are the holiday windows like in your corner of the world?