Pop Goes the Holiday Popup

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Nothing says timely promotion like a holiday pop-up. From NYC to Los Angeles – the retail scene is eager to cash in on selective partnerships, offline activation, and limited-edition wares.


Act One: Smart (Social) Commerce in London

E-tail giant eBay launched the Social Shopping pop-up shop in the Covent Garden neighborhood of London earlier this month. 

According to Retail Week, the company launched November 30th to capitalize on what was expected to be the busiest online shopping weekend. The short-lived event, which closed December 2nd, housed in-store screens that displayed top recommendations from Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and encouraged shoppers to download eBay's apps to browse and shop products in the pop-up store.

eBay Head of Buyer Experience Carrie Bienkowski said: “By pairing views of social communities with eBay’s own vast selection of top Christmas gifts and mobile expertise we hope to give shoppers lots of inspiration and put a little bit of fun into Christmas shopping. Mobile technology is a catalyst for retail growth and is changing the way we shop. Consumers now carry a global showroom in their pocket and are increasingly as inclined to seek recommendations online and shop mobile as visit the high street.”

Research from the company shows Augmented Reality and 3D technologies could boost the retail industry by nearly $4bn by 2014.


Act Two: A hotel hosts DailyCandy's brick-and-mortar 

The email newsletter turned lifestyle brand opened popup shops selling handpicked gifts by DailyCandy editors at The Standard hotels in New York, Miami and Los Angeles earlier this week.

“We know from our insights that when digital brands do an offline activation, it resonates with consumers” said Ashley Parrish, Editor-in-Chief of DailyCandy to WWD.

The assortment, which includes a Ryan McGinness To-Do Calendar and beach towels by Cecily Brown, will be offered in-store and online at through December 31st.

While a Maison Martin Margiela-Ligne 13 Claustrophobic notebook is certainly unique, we’re particularly intrigued at how the brand is banking on cross-pollination from locals and travelers in a hotel setting to push sales.


Act Three: A collective approach to the Darkest Days

30+ emerging designers, creatives, and artisans joined forces this past weekend for Brite Collective’s Blak Designmart Pop-up at Caffe Vita’s Bean Room in Seattle.

The event, which felt more like a old-school warehouse pop-up in 2006 than the manicured and excessively sponsored upmarket versions of today, mixed limited edition black-themed merchandise (representative of the cities darkest days) with freestanding branded stalls featuring products outside the motif. We love shopping local and appreciate the refreshing spin on the weeks leading up to the winter solstice.


Act Four: Socially-minded menswear in Williamsburg

Nomad Market, features classic men's clothing and accessories manufactured in collaboration with local craftspeople around the world on the second floor of Hickoree's Floor Two in Brooklyn. The latest in a series of socially-minded pop-ups from Apolis launched mid-November and will run through the end of December.

The traveling installation includes photo and video essays from the communities with which Apolis Global co-created to see how futures are impacted by each item. They brand calls the hand-on model “advocacy through industry.”

We love how brands are targeting customers and profits using philanthropic causes to better the retailing industry. Isn’t that what the spirit of Christmas is all about?