November 6, 2013

Oíche Shamhna - Halloween

So #Halloween is over for another year.

The excitement rolls on for some though.

Halloween is rooted in pagan celebration of Samhain marking the end of harvest, beginning of winter and it is a time when it is believed that spirits could cross over easily into our world so offerings are left for them and people disguise themselves from the spirits. It is a festival time of year.

For me, I'm still celebrating. The past couple of days saw a climactic finish to a little known event called the +Brooks Running Window Challenge.

Across Ireland & the UK, Brooks stockists are encouraged to dress their shop windows and submit them for judging and public voting. The theme is Halloween based, time of year and a loose connection to the Brooks running shoe the #Ghost is expected but not specified.

Time for some artistic flair!!

Not really expecting much out of it, being just a new store in Limerick and only a couple of years experience dressing windows I submitted our window for the LOLZ :)

I wanted atmosphere. I wanted grandeur. I wanted it to be tangible, pertinent. I wanted to make a connection with the spirit of Halloween!!

I also wanted to win :)

I didn't have much in the way of props. Some Brooks race tape from the Galway Aquathon in the summer, some boxes, a cleverly disguised ASICS pedestal (ssshhh!!!) some straw bedding from the local PetMania and pumpkins from a local farm. The cobwebs are real (I really need to clean up more) and the back drop & lights (cobwebs too) were picked up in clearance bins in Woodies.

The final window is plain enough:

But I was chasing details.

The harvest element is obvious

But I really like how the #GhostlyGhost turned out:

Submitting the photos to Brooks UK I wasn't expecting to see my pictures on the website as one of the final four! Cue some frantic sharing & promoting on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+ to name but a few Social Media sites.

Over the weekend we split away with a store that turned out to be in Lincolnshire, the Lincolnshire Runner and it really became a two shop race. All the entries were cleverly done but there was only going to be one winner.

We fell behind, jumped ahead, fell back, drew level, fell back and at 4pm I was a nervous wreck! You all saw the Twitter feed.

At 4:50pm I was frantic!! I literally spammed everybody I knew, every Facebook page I could access, every friend (I seem to have a few less today, wonder why? :) ) and at 5:00pm on the button voting shut down. I was afraid to refresh the screen and then the Tweets came flying in!!!!

WE WON!!! #AKLimerick are the winners!!

Right away the official word came through on Twitter:
All you fantastic #awesomeAKfans have made this shopkeeper very proud and thank you to each and everyone of you who shared, liked, voted, RT'd, favourited, +1'd all my posts over the last few days. Thanks to the guys in +Amphibian King Dublin for sharing on their page too.

I'm off to bask in the glory of "Best dressed window in Ireland & UK" before I get attacked by ninja onions :)

Thank you & #RunHappy, of course!

1 comment:

John Lynch. said...

Best window won on the day. Congrats Sean & team. Bring on 2014.