As I write this on Sunday night, it is actually more wintery in Austin, Texas than it is here in balmy (albeit rainy) Paris. However, Christmas is on here, despite the unseasonably warm weather. It’s much more low-key than at home, though. Fewer lights, fewer ads, and no horrible Christmas carols to torment me as I do my grocery shopping. The Christmas trees for sale on the streets are smaller and sitting in stands made of wooden logs, with no room for watering the tree. The fake trees are very stylized and are clearly not going for any semblance of “real”. Quite interesting.
Several weeks ago we strolled up Haussman to see the windows of two of Paris’ grand department stores, Printemps and Galeries Lafayette. It was just what I needed to nudge me a little closer to the holiday spirit.
The window themes were a bit unorthodox. Printemps was all about Chanel and Karl Lagerfeld- two names that don’t immediately evoke images of Yuletide cheer for me, but who am I to judge? Here is how Printemps describes their theme.
DREAMS OF ESCAPE
WITH THE MAISON CHANEL AND KARL LAGERFELD, PRINTEMPS INVITES YOU TO ENJOY CHRISTMAS ITS OWN VERSION OF CHRISTMAS: DREAMS OF ESCAPE.
WITH TRAVEL AS ITS WATCHWORD, CHRISTMAS EVOKES LEGENDARY CITIES – BYZANTIUM, MOSCOW, VENICE, PARIS AND MANY OTHERS…
A little strange and they could have used a copy editor, but the windows were magnificent.
Here is my favorite moving window. I apologize in advance for any extraneous heads or voices that may wander across the screen. Printemps did not grant me a private viewing of its windows. Also, it’s unfortunate that the music did not come through, because it added a lot to the window. The song was something about flying to LA.
While wealthy Parisians may dream of Byzantium and Shanghai when they think of Christmas, we at chez Mai are dreaming of Houston and Austin, neither of which made the windows this year.
No Santas? No trees? No piped-in carols? Nope. Nada. I have to say I didn’t really miss them. Did you?