Thursday, June 13, 2013

"Honey, I Shrunk the Kids!" (Massive Mega-Matryoshkas at the Mall)


These have to be the coolest "mall decorations" that we have ever seen... Situated on the 6th floor at the Afimall Moscow City mall, they are INCREDIBLE. This wide open space beneath the skylights is lined on both sides by these massive mock-matryoshka dolls, each uniquely decorated in a traditional Russian style. 


Katya loves the blue and white one which illustrates the style of "Gzhel" porcelain from the small town which made it famous. I collect the beautiful little vases and they remind me of Delft from my family's roots in the Netherlands. 



The doll decorated in black, red and gold currants (and often strawberries) is typical of wooden spoons and boxes referred to as "Khokhloma."



The doll on the right shows a design often painted on wooden breadboards and bread boxes. 


These flowers are often found on ornately painted papier-mâché brooches and on iron platters.



A back-bend. Why not?


The more ornately painted scenes featuring figures from fairy tales are commonly found on "Palekh" lacquered papier-mâché brooches and boxes.


Just had to post this picture above right away on Instagram once we got there!


In the background you can make out a doll dedicated to the style of Russian carved birch boxes, one with paper quilling, another with intricate Russian lace.



A little plug for the mall, too—since it is surrounded by tall office buildings, it has many good restaurants and food court-type kiosks at competitive prices. The selection of shops is great—including Marks & Spencer, Zara, H&M, Gap, and Banana Republic—and the mall is almost empty on weekends and during main office-job hours. There's a neat musical fountain with a Pinkberry and Starbucks next to it, and the mall also boasts a movie theater with an IMAX hall and a bowling alley/entertainment complex for kids with a café. This year I needed to buy a dress for Graduation and I was dreading it—ready to have the search take up multiple days. In fact, I found a beautiful dress within half an hour upon arriving at the mall at a shop featuring the Russian designer Caterina Leman—and it fits great and is very comfortable. Yes, I could have found something for a lot less in the US or UK, but you adjust your expectations here and I was thrilled to have found something I like so quickly. 


3 comments:

Tina in CT said...

I thought the same thing you did about the blue and white one. And you know how I love Blue Delft.

Can you imagine what it was like to bring them into the mall? What is normally in that large open space?

How great that you are so close to that fantastic mall and that it's not busy on weekends. Good place to hang on a Saturday, have dinner and see a movie and just 5 minutes from the apt. Is it new since I was in Moscow?

sherry said...

Thanks for posting this! If they're still there, we'd love to go see them tomorrow.

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