Window Shopping

Fifth Avenue shoppers who stop to enjoy
Saks Fifth Avenue’s holiday windows this season will get the added bonus of
witnessing a state of the art, 3D light show, projected on the facade of the
building. The Snowflake
projection features snowflakes, ice skaters and a lovable
snow creature, The Yeti, who is also the central figure in the store’s animated
store windows.

Click on image for full size view

Each window depicts a scene from the
The Yeti Story, a
book written exclusively for Saks Fifth Avenue last year by Stephen Bucher.  It
follows the Yeti’s evolution from a snow maker in Siberia to a snowflake artist,
rumored to live on the roof of the Fifth Avenue store. “ We took some scenes
from the book and really brought them to life to give the Yeti his fifteen
minutes of fame, if you will,” said Harry Cunningham, Senior Vice President of
Store Planning and Visual Merchandising for Saks Fifth Avenue, “ so it’s a full
360 degree approach for us with the book, the plush, the windows and the video

Click on image for full size view
The process from concept to display
takes about a year, according to Cunningham, so while passersby are savoring
this year’s presentation, the planning for the 2014 production is already under
way. “We start by drawing the storyboards out, we build small models and then we
build the full size windows actually off site, completely break them down, move
them across town; it takes us about two weeks to put them back together in our
windows and you get to see what you see tonight,” said Cunningham at the window
unveiling last week.
In the four years that Mr. Cunningham
has been at Saks Fifth Avenue, he has seen the light show become increasingly
more elaborate.  “This is completely built on a computer, it is computer
animated and generated… there are tons of measurements that are taken from the
building to actually allow it to be completely mapped, so it’s video mapped and
that’s what gives us the opportunity to bring it to life.  When you see the
building actually moving it’s because we’ve literally measured every inch of the
façade of the building, put that into a computer and then computer animated all
the video that you see on the front. As technology advances we’re going to
continue to push ourselves forward and advance our windows and our projections
and everything that we’re doing.

There is also an interactive window in
the display, created in collaboration with MasterCard.   Guests can visit and create their own personal Yeti name and design their own
snowflake, which will be added to the digital display.  The mobile site features
artwork by designers Stefan Bucher and Marian Bantjes.

Saks Fifth Avenue, 611 Fifth Avenue,
New York City

Don’t Miss…

Bloomingdale’s Unwrapped

Take a global tour, celebrating holiday
shopping in China, France, Great Britain and New York City.  Each of the store’s
holiday windows unwraps a surprise gift.

Bloomingdale’s 59th Street
at Lexington Avenue, New York City

Henri Bendel’s Hirschfeld

Al Hirschfeld’s artistry is captured in
the main window of the Fifth Avenue flagship. A holiday party scene includes the
artist’s rendering of guests including Carol Channing, Whoopi Goldberg, Sarah
Jessica Parker and many more, including and the artist himself.

Henri Bendel, 712 Fifth Avenue, New
York City

Lord & Taylor’s Vintage Holiday

A vintage New York City holiday
experience is depicted in the holiday windows of the store’s 100-year-old Fifth
Avenue building. The windows include scenes of Lord & Taylor shoppers
enjoying holiday traditions of a bygone era in a “magically decorated” store.

Lord & Taylor, 424 Fifth Avenue,
New York City

Rhonda Erb

Rhonda Erb writes about fashion, travel and lifestyle from a New Yorker’s perspective in Better Bets. A self-confessed Instagram addict, her work has also appeared in such publications as Runway Magazine. Follow her at: Instagram: @betterbets Twitter: @betterbetsny tumblr:

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