A Peek at Pollock

In addition to being on the global snoop for what's new in seasonal decorations and retail, I have cooked and styled a couple of food shoots with uber-fab international photographer, Robyn Lea, whilst here in New York. Robyn recently photographed the home and studio of Jackson Pollock in East Hampton, Long Island.  Being a serious foodie, she was interested in more than just the art side to this editorial. The Foundation provided some favourite Pollock recipes which I whipped up and Rob worked her camera magic on this week, including making fresh bread from scratch - haven't done that in years - it turned out a treat!

VM Food New York

Happy Holidays

Bloomingdale's get's my vote for the happiest holiday campaign I have seen in my 'festive season world tour'. The outdoor and print media is immediately recognisable around New York. Being a fan of the illustrator, Jenny Bowers, naturally I had to collect all 6 fab carry bags.

Christmas VM New York

City of Light

Paris is the City of Light. The Place Vendome did not disappoint with a contemporary take on twigs & trees that sparkle this Christmas.

VM Paris

Bon Marche in Black & Gold

Le Bon Marche's Christmas theme celebrates the architecture of Paris with tres cute back lit minature buildings scattered throughout the store. The main void has a rather minimalist take on bells. Contemporary, simple and dramatic, I think you needed to be there to appreciate just how effective it was.

Le Bon Marche VM Paris

Lanvin’s got legs

Lanvin's Christmas windows are a little madcap this season with mannequin's arms and legs projecting from trees adorned with bags, shoes and trinkets along with traditional baubles.  Spotted on the Rue St Honore, Paris.

VM Fashion Paris

Liberty Takes Bronze

Shiny bronze cardboard cut into strips and stapled together ... simple but very effective VM when done on a grand scale. Liberty's Christmas is definitely a winner on the 'low production cost' podium in London's Olympic year.

Christmas VM Other London

Seasonally Social on Oxford Street

Turning on London's Christmas Lights makes international news. This year Robbie Williams did the honours (as our Kylie has done in the past). I don't recall seeing a sponsored campaign before, but this year its all about Marmite (you know, the black stuff like Vegemite that you put on your toast ... and as a general rule you either love it or hate it). Given it is dark by about 3.30pm in the afternoon, lights make sense in this part of the world. The timing sequence goes something like this ... reindeers headbutting then smashing a jar of Marmite gold, elves fighting over Marmite toast and fairies fluttering their wings to deliver hot toast (ha ha, it was minus 2 degrees when I snapped these pics!).

In a challenging retail climate, and with every budget under pressure, I am not surprised to see this event is now a high profile brand opportunity ... the interesting thing is that everybody can be involved in a very public way. You can get festive on Facebook or pop into the Marmite booth near Bond St tube to see your smiling dial shining down over Oxford Street (love it) or all manner of distasteful expressions (hate it). Personally I'm a Vegemite girl.

If the campaign doesn't impress you, then just take a look at the number of people out and about - it was shoulder to shoulder and survival of the fittest this weekend, which makes Christmas shopping in Australia seem very relaxed indeed.