Festive abstinence has suited me just fine till now.

Ever the Grinch, it seems.

Christmas spirit has never really found its way into my bloodstream. The most obvious contributor being that my family doesn’t celebrate Christmas, and so I have spent the past two decades smugly dodging December shopping crowds and carols in favour of the beach and trilogy movie marathons.

Or studying.

I was probably studying.

In any case, festive abstinence has suited me just fine till now. I don’t drink, I don’t care for ham, or turkey, or shrimp on the barbie, I don’t comprehend the meaning in the awkward exchange of gifts of obligation, void of any real sentimental significance, I don’t believe in Santa, or God for that matter, and though I do believe in family time, surely that can be enjoyed routinely on any other weekend of the year. Ever the Grinch, it seems.*

But, with the news that I fly out on Thursday for a spot of work in LA before spending the rest of the year in New York with Alex, I’m told that holiday cheer in Manhattan is as unavoidable as ugly sweaters and dancing shoes. Every person I’ve spoken to has gushed about the department stores’ visual merchandising, the pumpkin spice lattes, the abundance of chimes and tinsel, and small children attempting to ice-skate faster than their red noses are running.

For a Grinch, this is not ok. Some kind of emotional (correctional) conditioning beyond hairy coats (and workaholism) is surely required.

Louis Vuitton Christmas Margaret Zhang 3

Louis Vuitton Christmas Margaret Zhang 2A

  • Sounds absolutely amazing!


  • Briony Simpson

    Beautiful post Margaret. I sincerely hope you can provide some New York winter dressing inspiration. I’m headed there in Feb and am worried that due to freezing temps I’ll be stuck in thermals and puffy jackets. Please tell me there is a more elegant answer? x

    • Hey Briony! I’ve sworn by UNIQLO heat-tech thermals for years ( http://bit.ly/1vvwyxR ). Worn with some kind of wind-breaker (e.g. leather jacket), a good scarf and a massive man coat over the top of it all (a bit like this: http://bit.ly/1yZvPdb ), you’ll be right for sure.

      • Briony Simpson

        Great suggestions, thanks :)

  • I hope you will enjoy your time in NY and traveling during the festive period. The LV NY guide looks fabulous!


  • Jo

    NYC is a magical place to be at Christmas but do not go looking for other Grinches. I endured The Grinch Musical courtesy of my daughter…excruciating and to be avoided at at all costs!

  • Nicole Farrugia

    I’m from a pretty warm country and spending Christmas in NYC too..been freaking out about what to pack!!
    Great post ;)

  • I’m not all that big on Christmas either, tbh. However I love a good Christmas movie; Home Alone (1 & 2), The Grinch, Elf etc (not the cheese ball ones though)! Also I would love to spend “the Holidays” (Christmas and New Year) in NYC. Just to see how infectious it really is. Have a good one!! C x


  • Hilarious :D I get the studying part a lot!!! i love comercial and family time Christmas, i guess :)
    Love your blog.
    Beijinhos from Portugal

  • Great:)

    Shall We Sasa

  • mcboodles

    That was charming! Loved the red noses running line. Have fun on your fire escape, don’t forget ur mittens!

  • carissa
  • Juliet

    Would love to spend Christmas in New York, especially involving dumplings and fire escapes! Have fun Margaret and can’t wait to see your instagram pics

  • Always enjoy learning about other people’s cultures and traditions during this season! http://www.kandjdiaries.com

  • Helen Chik-Dohrmann

    What an incredibly post Margaret! These shots are amazing and it seems you really did get into the Christmas spirit for these photos. I think it’s always great to go along with the spirit and enjoy the ride, especially if you’re in NYC! Enjoy and hope to read more posts of your adventures there!

    Helen xx

  • Molly O’Brien

    Such a beautifully styled post Margaret! I’m leaving on Thursday to spend Christmas in New York also, I can’t wait! Although you’re probably a near-native New Yorker by now here are my best NYC winter tips: be sure to try the Jaques Torres Hot Chocolates in DUMBO, for market style shopping peruse the set-up shop locations by the local purveyors at Columbus Circle or Astoria’s Bohemian Hall, warm up with a bowl of ramen at Ippudo or Momofuku (why can’t Australia have ramen as good as this?) The Brooklyn Flea has an indoor winter market in w’burg too, and definitely watch the light show projected on to Macy’s on 5th Ave, it is the most mesmerising thing I’ve ever witnessed! The Mulled Wine at Bryant Park is incredible too. Have a fantastic trip, and if I bump in to you I’ll be sure to say hi :) x

  • I feel you with the Grinch thing actually, but slowly I’m starting to feel the Christmas spirit. SLOWLY. Haha. I hope you do too as well! Enjoy New York Margaret! :)


  • Hahaha, I am the opposite. Although far from the true believer, I absolutely love the commercial side of Christmas! All the glitter, tinsel and eggnog latte! (However, I draw the line at shops starting to sell Christmas ornaments in July. London is insane this way.) My house looks like Winter Wonderland from the first of December all the way until the end of January.

    I love your little editorial. Although normally I am against the whole LV pattern- this little red one stole my heart! xxx


  • Winnie Chen

Margaret Zhang 章凝 is an Australian-born-Chinese filmmaker, photographer, consultant and writer based between New York and Shanghai. Since establishing her website in 2009, Zhang has gone on to work with global brands including CHANEL, Swarovski, YEEZY, Bulgari, Gucci, MATCHES, Under Armour, and Louis Vuitton in a wide range of capacities both in front of and behind the camera, while completing her Bachelor of Commerce/Bachelor of Laws at The University of Sydney. Zhang’s directing, photography, and styling has been employed by the likes of VOGUE, L’Officiel, Harper’s BAZAAR, NOWNESS, and ELLE internationally. She has been listed in Forbes Asia’s 30Under30 and TimeOut’s 40Under40, and her work has been recognized as shaping the international fashion industry by the Business of Fashion BoF500 Index for four consecutive years. CNN has identified Zhang as a leading fashion photographer in Asia and ELLE named her the region’s most influential digital voice. She went on to be the first Asian face to cover ELLE Australia. In 2016, she co-founded BACKGROUND, a global consultancy for which she specialises in Western-to-Chinese and Chinese-to-Western cultural bridging for a range of luxury, lifestyle, and brand initiatives. In 2017, she exhibited a series of 39 unseen photographic works as a solo show in Sydney, and premiered her first short film – a 15-minute exploration of her visceral relationship with classical music on both performance and abstract planes – to critical acclaim. In 2018, co-curated the first annual FOREFRONT Summit focused on inter-industry problem-solving at all scales of business. From this king summit, Zhang developed FOREFRONT+ – a round table series of candid conversations covering subject matters of universal concern. In 2019, THE FACE Magazine engaged Zhang as Creative-Director-at-Large for Asia for its relaunch. Zhang is currently working on her first feature film.


For project enquiries Tess.Stillwell@img.com
General enquiries bookings@margaretzhang.com.au