… a word from Amanda

Welcome to this ‘festive feel’ instalment of Zips It Up. Yes, the most wonderful time of the year bearing down on us, with Christmas Day only 40 days away.

Christmas shopping should be fun. Think ‘Oxford Street’, bundled up in coats, hats and scarves, the smell of chestnuts in the air, with carol singers on the street corner. Year on year, retailers battle to out-do one another’s festive window displays in a bid to lure us (and our credit cards) through the door. 

Selfridges caused a big festive stir by being the first department store in the world to unveil their 2019 Christmas windows – a whole 69 days before the Dec 25th.

Selfridges stores across the UK now feature more than 85,000 baubles, 200 Christmas trees and 65,000 pieces of paper confetti, as part of its “Selfridges Rocks Christmas”. Each store window has borrowed an element of a well-known Christmas story or fairy tale, such as Rapunzel or Cinderella, meanwhile giving it a modern twist.

Across the other side of London, Harrods has unveiled its Yule 2019 incarnation. The iconic store, founded in 1849, has transformed itself into an emporium of magic under its theme for the year: ‘The Kingdom of Christmas.’ Christmas has been brought to life through a series of street-facing wintry scenes, with festive animals helping Harrods and their brands in delivering seasonal gifts to children of all ages.

Harvey Nichols’ display has drawn inspiration from all things Scandinavian. The much-anticipated window display across all Harvey Nichols stores in the UK and Ireland is a fusion of Scandi-architectural influence, featuring handcrafted cedar slat panels draped with festive garlands, framing the windows and glowing like the Nordic night sky.

Of course, call me old school, as this may all mean nothing to you if you sit at home and order your gifts on Amazon. But personally, I can’t wait to get out and witness all of the window displays.

In this week’s issue of Zips It Up we check out Xmas gift ideas for the whole family, take a look at the debut fashion collection from a certain British Wimbledon Champion, plus, if you hate Christmas and simply want to get away, we have discovered the most fashionable luggage to breeze through Terminal 5 with.