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Tradition, Modernity, Marionettes: Alber Elbaz’s Christmas Tree for Claridge’s

John Galliano is a tough act to follow, but Lanvin creative director Alber Elbaz has proven himself up to the task of creating a showstopper of a Christmas tree for Claridge’s. His secret weapons? The “infusion of tradition and modernity” that he has made a signature of the fashion house, along with madcap marionettes (dressed in Lanvin-designed Claridge’s uniforms, bien sûr). The colorful tree, which will remain on view through January 2 in the London hotel’s art deco lobby, is topped by a figure of Elbaz, his trademark floppy bow tie and glasses accessorized for the season with fairy wings and a wand. For those can’t make it across the pond, there’s this whimsical—and mildly creepy—short film to get you in the Christmas spirit. You’ll come away craving both goatskin ballerina flats and scones. Pass the Marco Polo jelly and Cornish clotted cream.

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