Dolce & Gabbana take over Harrods for Christmas

Italian fashion house Dolce & Gabbana has spent reportedly £7 million ($9,15 million) taking over all 23 shop windows at luxury department store Harrods ahead of Christmas. In addition to adorning the windows of the London landmark, designers Stefano Gabbana and Domenico Dolce have installed an themed Italian market selling branded paraphernalia, including sweatbands embroidered with “D&G loves London” (from £70), T-shirts (from £285) and key fobs (£335). The duo have also created a capsule range of women’s and menswear (price on application) and opened a fine-jewellery pop-up boutique.

The takeover launched on Thursday night with the lighting of a Dolce & Gabbana-branded tree and a fashion show starring young celebrities. It was staged in the store’s fabled food hall, for around 300 of the shop’s VIP clients and the press.Walking the runway in the store’s food hall for the evening show was a cast of rock star kids, young aristocrats and other ‘It’ millennials, including Amber Le Bon, Lady Tatiana Mountbatten, Lady Kitty and Lady Amelia Spencer, Lady Alice Manners, Rafferty Law, pop star Pixie Lott, Olivier Cheshire and diving champion Tom Daley. 100 of them had been pulled together at short notice for the show.

Harrods would not confirm how much Dolce & Gabbana paid for the privilege of occupying one of the world’s busiest retail spaces during the festive season. A source close to the brand suggested it has spent up to £7 million ($9,15 million) on the project. But with millions of people expected to walk past Harrods in the run-up to Christmas, and millions more connected to the brand’s activities via social media, Mr Gabbana insists the exposure is worth far more than the equivalent costs of taking out advertisements in glossy magazines.

“It’s London but it’s not just London,” said the Domenico Dolce. “It’s international exposure. It’s not just business, it’s explaining who we are. By coming and doing a show in the store, it’s a bit like the trunk show model of the 90s, but with digital assets and a real show. We show the clients our world.” “I couldn’t think of a better brand to partner with this Christmas at Harrods than Dolce & Gabbana,” said Helen David, chief merchant at Harrods. “A year in the making, this is a storewide takeover and will touch all areas and appeal to all of our customers — both children and adults — with a hefty dose of fun and Italian spirit.”