Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

It wouldn’t be Christmas without pink poodles in September

September 19, 2008

macys-008.jpgIt’s Christmas already at Macy’s and yes, indeed, the holiday is on sale.

More than a month ahead of Halloween, the U.S. department store chain has dragged out its colorful collection of ornaments, baubles and beads and discounted the price by 25 percent.

Trees at Macy’s Holiday Lane Christmas shop in downtown San Francisco are festooned with themed ornaments. Besides the requisite trees covered in gingerbread, Santas, and holly, Macy’s offered up a lavender tree, a pink tree, a Hawaii tree, a tree with pink flamingos, a San Francisco-themed tree, a Martha Stewart tree and, yes, a Sex in the City tree (complete with ornaments resembling pink martini glasses and pink Eiffel Towers — a nod to Carrie’s last-season stay in Paris.)

Retail watchers expect this holiday season to be downright dismal in the United States, and some have predicted that it may be one of the worst on record, given the housing downturn, rising food and fuel costs, a weakening job market, and the credit crunch — not to mention headlines from Wall Street this week. 

Macy’s did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment on whether Christmas was coming just a bit early this year — maybe to reap a few early sales before the next shoe drops in the economy?

With the exception of a handful of Italian, German and British tourists looking for souvenirs, Holiday Lane shoppers were few and far between one Friday afternoon.

“We’ve got to have a Christmas ornament from Macy’s,” said British tourist Debbie Simmonds, browsing with her daughter, tour guide in hand.

Still, she balked at the $40 price tag on an elaborate Asian fish ornament and instead settled on a small gold crustacean for $22, passing on the pink poodle ornaments.

Noted Simmonds: “Why would you want a pink poodle on your Christmas tree?”     
(Photo: Alexandria Sage)  

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