Thursday, 20 December 2012

Come January, quiet is the new way to shop

Shopping in the days before Christmas is, to put it mildly, quite the adventure for your nerves, ears and all around stress levels. Just as you're waiting for the holidays to finish so you can finally enjoy some quality retail therapy, January brings about sales season - a not-to-miss event for everyone. Which is why literally everyone hits stores again and, in the hustle and bustle, you may be left feeling drained of energy and in no mood to spend your hard-earned money. The solution to make shopping relaxing again? According to London's most popular department store Selfridges, it's a "No Noise"shopping area. 

Apparently inspired by an idea founder Harry Gordon Selfridge had back in 1909 (is nobody else wondering why it took 100+ years to implement it?!), the store's Ultralounge will feature, starting January, a silent shopping area. According to Selfridges creative director Alannah Weston, the room 'invites customers to find a moment of peace in a world where we are bombarded by a cacophony of information and stimulation', WWD reports. True that. Who could ever want to be stimulated on a shopping spree?

Shoppers here will be kindly asked to leave their mobile phones and shoes at the door (be sure to wear your best pair of socks if you're planning a visit) in order to be allowed access to this relaxing environment. Some of the perks inside? Meditation spaces (so thankful I won't be needing to carry my yoga mat with me anymore when I go shopping), headspace pods and a Quiet Shop, selling de-branded products to promote considered shopping (can anyone translate this into plain English for me? Please?), as well as an edit of pieces from spring ready-to-wear collections, including Zen-driven labels such as Acne, Jil Sander or Ann Demeulemeester (which are, apparently, too important to shed their labels).

The only thing I'm wondering? Will I still be able to chat with my friends as I shop or should I be frozen in a reverent vow of silence? I guess I'll be able to find out next month.

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