By Irina Veremeeva
If you are pining for fluffy snow, cheerful frost and colourful city illuminations, you should head to a big department store, where the festive spirit is truly embraced. Catch the holiday atmosphere by choosing your fir tree, decorations and gifts in beautifully decorated surroundings.
Carnival costumes, souvenirs of 2011, fancy masks, candles and Christmas tree decorations are among the most popular sales at this time of year.
“Why is your Father Frost hanging from the ceiling?” asks an old man in the Central Department Store, pointing to a figure of Santa Klaus climbing a rope ladder with his sack of gifts. “He’s going into a chimney,” smiles the seller. Statuettes of cats and rabbits — talismans of 2011 — are also on sale, with rabbits bought more often, according to shop assistants. People are buying ‘rabbit’ costumes for children, although ‘squirrels’, ‘little foxes’ and ‘musketeers’ are also selling well. Classic snowflake embellished dresses remain every little girl’s favourite.
Shops, and shop assistants, have transformed, with two retailers in the Central Department Store dressing their staff in the sparkling white costumes of Snow Maidens and snowflakes for these few weeks of December. “We’re creating a festive mood while answering the usual questions from customers and giving advice. We also have small gifs for children,” they explain.
Various promotions and sales are scheduled, in addition to fashion shows, with many shops countrywide introducing pre New Year discounts.