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Thursday, December 15, 2011

Kirks Christmas Shop

I love Christmas, and boarded the big orange bus for a trip to Wellington today to see the Kirks Christmas Shop.  The weather was wet and drizzly but very warm, and the hills across the harbour were covered in mist.
DSCF8336 On the way to Wellington
Nobody does Christmas better than Kirks Christmas Shop, in my view anyway.  Kirkcaldies and Stains department store (affectionately known as Kirks) is a Wellington institution and has been around since the early days of settlement.  It was founded in 1863 by young Britons John Kircaldie and Robert Stains as a “men’s hosiers and linen drapers”.  The tradition of a Christmas Shop started in 1988.   As we have come to expect, the shop windows were beautifully decorated and groups of excited youngster watched all the moving displays in fascination.  Unfortunately, the reflections in the windows would not allow for good photos.

I climbed the curving staircase up to the 2nd floor and joined  the many Mums and their offspring to gaze in wonder at all the Christmas delights.  The staff were quite happy for me to take photos. 
DSCF8347 Views in the shop
There was a whole wall of little village houses with their windows all lit up and shining out across the supposed winter wonderland.  (We celebrate Christmas in Summer down here in New Zealand)  Each one could be purchased separately and you could chose from the Donut Shop, the Gingerbread Factory, Day Care, House of Chocolate, Fire Station, St Stevens Bell Chapel and many more.  They were all so perfect in their own way and a purchaser would be hard pressed to make a choice, I expect.
DSCF8348 So many little houses to chose from
DSCF8357Black and white tree
DSCF8355Lots of little cuties 
I was amused to see a whole range of special Christmas toys for those with pet dogs.  No doubt the dog would make short work of this Christmas chicken.
DSCF8358 Especially for the dogs
There was so much to take in that I had to walk around several times.  Displays were all themed and colour coordinated and the whole Christmas Shop was delightful.  Many of the automated toys were up and  running and the shop was filled with the sounds of happy songs and music.
DSCF8351 The Ferris Wheel was turning
DSCF8364A woodland scene
It certainly is a magical experience to wander through the Christmas Shop.  I read recently that Kirks are trying to modernise their image, so I do hope that the tradition of the Christmas Shop continues.

1 comment:

Frances Leate said...

Jenny it is lovely to see that some of the traditional style department stores still exist. These windows bring back wonderful memories of Christmases of my youth when we would visit the big department stores in Sydney - the displays were quite spectacular. Thank you for bringing these lovely memories to life.