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Selfridges unveils footwear strategy

Selfridges is poised to open what it claims is the world’s largest footwear department in its London flagship store on Oxford Street.

The space, measuring more than 35,000 sq ft, will house 4,000 pairs of shoes from 120 brands ranging from high street chains such as River Island and All Saints to designer exclusives from the likes of Marc by Marc Jacobs and Balenciaga.

Called Shoe Galleries, it will open fully in mid-September. The department store has created six specially designed salons and 10 bespoke boutiques for the area.

The boutiques include a recreation of Coco Chanel’s apartment, while a red carpet and trompe l’oeil chandelier and iron staircase will feature in the Christian Louboutin boutique.

Selfridges’ director of accessories, Sebastian Manes, said: “The Shoe Galleries will be a new and exciting way to experience shoe shopping within one huge space.

“The new department will fit perfectly into the essence of what Selfridges is - a place where everyone can find something extraordinary to buy, from the inexpensive to the luxurious.”

Meanwhile, Selfridges opened its Christmas store on Monday in London, earlier than ever before.

The retailer has chosen the theme ‘Play’ for the festive season, celebrating a return to fun and frivolity in a move away from the austere traditional Christmas themes seen at the height of the recession last year.

Top gifts available from the Christmas store include the world’s first official Lego jewellery from £50, an exclusive Anya Hindmarch pouch bag with a draughts set for £395 and a sequined pyjama set by British designer Ashish for £1,700.

According to figures from mystery shopping firm Retail Eyes, one in six shoppers out of a survey of 3,000 people has already started their Christmas shopping.

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