Rock Candy window

The Rose Street Project

It really is starting to look like Christmas in Edinburgh City Centre. With only a month to go until the big day, Edinburgh’s Christmas is in full swing and some of Rose Street’s independent shops have dressed themselves in beautiful festive art thanks to The Rose Street Project.

This collaborative project was co-ordinated by curator Karl Finn Graham and made possible through support from Essential Edinburgh and local arts charity Edinburgh Palette. Ten shops in total have taken part, making for a unique shopping experience / open air art exhibition – plus, it’s free to go and take a look!

I went on a wee wander down The Rose Street Project and taken a couple of snaps of the brilliant festive art that’s on display. Make sure you go and see it for yourself when you go for this year’s Christmas shopping!

Creative Cookware

89 Rose St

Creative Cookware window

The first window on The Rose Street Project trail was constructed by ceramic artist Rebecca Armstrong. Being in the window on of a cookware shop, it made sense that the theme of the window revolved around festive baking! The bright baubles are accompanied by terracotta “biscuit” stars and look great beside Creative Cookware’s fabulous cookery range.

Murdo McLean’s

118-120 Rose St

Murdo McLeans window

This Rose Street hairdressers has had a fab festive makeover by illustrator Anupa Gardener. Out of all the window installations in The Rose Street Project, this is probably one of the most obvious! It’s really hard to miss the bold bright colours of this design, and the overall effect is really cute and festive.


99 Rose St

Palenque window

The little cute Christmas trees adorning Palenque’s window were designed by their in-house team, showing truly what a creative bunch they are. The delicate decorations go with their beautiful jewellery perfectly, although I wouldn’t be surprised if customers try to snap up these festive trees as well!

Rogerson Footwear

126-128 Rose St

Rogerson Footwear window

Behind the cosy looking boots and footwear in Rogerson and Son’s you’ll spot this delightfully patterned screen print by textile artist Jyoti Sigouin. Entitled “Partridge in a Pear Tree”, this gold and black design fits really well into the shop’s aesthetic while giving it a prominent festive feel.

Verve Clothing

138 Rose St

Verve Clothing window

This simple but effective installation was created by Sheila Masson, who created these snowflakes (or stars?) out of old milk cartons. I loved the imaginative use of something that would usually be thrown away, and the way the shop’s light catches them to make a really beautiful wintery scene.

Rockcandy Gallery

111 Rose St

Rock Candy window

The delicate wares in this jewellery shop have been complimented perfectly by this beautiful piece of work by visual artist Fiona Hermse. Usually known for her larger works, these little clouds look absolutely adorable and are made festive by the addition of perfectly intricate origami snowflakes (which you can see in the picture at the top of this post).

Social Bite

131 Rose St

Social Bite window

Ethical sandwich shop Social Bite’s windows have been absolutely rammed with wonderfully Christmassy doodles by talented illustrator Louise Smurthwaite. Featuring lots of foodie treats like big fat turkeys, gingerbread men and Christmas puds, this really fun installation aims to make you feel very hungry so that you’ll pop in for a cheeky wee sarnie! It also reminds you that you can buy Christmas dinner for one of the city’s homeless here, which in my opinion is a pretty cracking gift to give.


182 Rose Street

Dance wear window

This installation by puppeteer Tania Czajka has the best title ever – “Cloudy with a chance of dance shoes”! Being a ballet supplies shop, this retailer seemed like the ideal fit for Tania. Go and see the full display for yourself, which includes fluffy clouds and sparkly reindeer!

Mailboxes Etc

196 Rose St

Mail Boxes Etc window

Printmaker Izzy Bocchetti has done a couple of really interesting pieces in the window of mailer and stationer Mail Boxes inc. In one window, there is a large poster that looks like a sheet of stamps that helpfully illustrates the last posting dates before Christmas. In the other window there is an advent calendar that has been designed so the staff will punch out a window every day to reveal a message in the run up to Christmas. I’ll definitely be popping back during December to see what is hiding behind those windows!


200 Rose St

Wolfits window

Sandwich shop Wolfits has a wonderful display created by illustrator Astrid Jaekel. There are three screens in total, each showing a different kind of Christmas craft. The artist took 45 hours cutting the intricate designs out with paper and scissors… but the end result is absolutely fantastic. And if you think the ‘Beachcomber’ work on the other side of the street looks familiar… you’d be right. It’s another brilliant example of Astrid’s work.

The Rose Street Project (website) can be found at… you guessed it, Rose Street. All the shops taken part can be found at the west end of the street, so head up Frederick Street from Princes Street and swing a left – you’ll see the first installation in the window of Creative Cookware. The installations will remain in the windows until the new year. 

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