December 6, 2015


Written by Richard Eberle, Production and Design Manager of Judith Von Hopf

During the holidays, there are many ways to get your window to stand out from the rest. This can be done in a simplistic way with key elements that tell a story, or this can be done with a beautifully detailed window that keeps your attention while you find all the unique pieces. Both are possible and can achieve the same amount of attention.

If your store has multiple windows to showcase, then you have the perfect opportunity to tell a story that seamlessly moves from one window to the next. Some locations don't have as much real estate so it may benefit them to try a more detailed approach. These retailers have one shot to grab a viewer's attention and captivate them with a gorgeous window display.

Tips for types of Windows

- Fewer Windows- no problem. Aim for a detailed approach that will hold a viewer’s interest. Get them to look around the window and find little hidden gems. Be clever, be unique, and make the viewers interact!

-Have a whole block? Tell a story by leading the viewer through a journey from one window to the next. Let the viewer enter one side of the street and leave the other side with a story to share with others. Aim for a story that the viewer can relate to, and make them smile for the holiday season.

*Remember, keep each window simple and sweet. You don't have to tell the story in one window; you have a whole block to share and engage them in the experience.

General tips

-Include eye-catching props that shine and catch the viewers as they walk by.

-Movement in windows have always been a game changer and seem to grab the most attention. It is an expensive option but will set you apart from most other windows. Motorized displays can take a viewer on a journey and fascinate them.

-Again story, story, stories! Who doesn't love a good story?!

-Interactive displays are fun but sometimes don't have the same effect in crowded streets. Not everyone can get the full experience with these types of displays, so they don't get the credit they deserve.

-Be sensitive to the holiday season and what is going on in the world. Coming up with a direction that every single person will find inoffensive is a very ambitious goal to set, but try your best and more viewers will respond positively. Alternatively, you can choose the road of not being sensitive and try to break the silence to stun people. That tactic will also get you publicity, but is not always recommended because there is a fine line between clever and offensive.

Windows displays at places like Saks and Macy's do this every year and are great examples of simplistic story tellers. Bergdorf Goodman pushes the envelope with the simplistic approach by always intriguing the viewers with their extravagant displays that aren't that simple, yet you get the story at a few glances.

Be unique, be original, and most importantly be true to your brand. When the season is over, leave the viewers excited to see what you have up your sleeve next year.


Richard is a Fashion Institute of Technology Alumni where he graduated Summa Cum Laude in Visual Presentation and Exhibit Design. Soon after graduation he found his way into the design and build community for retail environments. He has been working in Project Management as well as Production and Design Management positions for companies such as Judith Von Hopf, Inc and GUILD. Currently in the position of Production and Design Manager at Judith Von Hopf, Inc. For more information, visit

 This content is from Creative CNTRL's Twelve Days of Pop-Ups: An Insider's Guide to Popping-Up for the Holidays e-book. Every day from December 1st-12th, I will unlock a new chapter of this e-book, but you can download the full e-book here.