Roksanda creates a perfectly pink Christmas tree for Amsterdam’s Pulitzer hotel

Fashion designer Roksanda Ilinčić unveils a tulle-covered pink Christmas tree, its bold design recalling the colours and textures of her collections

Roksanda pink Christmas tree
A close up of the Roksanda x Pulitzer tree, which was unveiled at the Amsterdam hotel the past weekend
(Image credit: Photography by Suat Aray)

Amsterdam’s Pulitzer hotel is one of the Dutch city’s most unique properties – straddling two canals and spanning the Prinsengracht and Keizersgracht canals, the hotel comprises 25 historic houses, each built between Amsterdam’s golden 17th and 18th centuries and with a unique history and original purpose (the room I stayed in was housed in a former canalside brewery on the Prinsengracht side). First founded by Peter Pulitzer – grandson of newspaper titan Joseph Pulitzer, creator of the famed publishing prize – who bought the then-dilapidated collection of houses in the 1970s, the space was redesigned in 2016 by Jacu Strauss, creative director of the Lore Group which now owns the hotel.

That design, which relies on liberated use of colour, as well as playful nods to the city’s history – the reception desk, for example, is entirely adorned with blue-and-white Delft tiles – largely centres around a courtyard from which one can view the amalgam of architectural styles that make up the Pulitzer. This past November weekend, that courtyard was transformed with a vast new centrepiece – a pink tulle-covered Christmas tree designed by Roksanda, the eponymous London-based brand of designer Roksanda Ilinčić, known for its sculptural, colour-soaked designs which often find inspiration from contemporary artists and creative movements.

Roksanda x Pulitzer Amsterdam Christmas tree

Roksanda Pulitzer Christmas Tree

Adorned with pink tulle, the tree stands 10m high

(Image credit: Photography by Suat Aray)

Standing 10m high, the unique pink Christmas tree heralds the arrival of the festive season – one for which Amsterdam is particularly known, the city transformed each December with glimmering Christmas lights and a slew of markets, ice rinks, and seasonal gatherings (officially beginning with Sinterklaas, where on the eve of 5 December, children leave boots at the fireplace to be filled with gifts). Pulitzer says that the Christmas tree offers ‘seasonal cheer and joy to our [two brands’] merging communities’, which span Amsterdam, London and Serbia (where Ilinčić is originally from), as well as the slew of other countries that make up the brands’ respective teams, friends, and collaborators.

‘It started really spontaneously,’ explains Ilinčić of how the project began. ‘They reached out to me, and knowing how special the Pulitzer is, its team’s attention to detail, and the way they celebrate so many different artists, that was the beginning of it all. It was built on a mutual respect for art and design.’

Roksanda Christmas tree

Roksanda Ilinčić stands by the tree, wearing her own design

(Image credit: Photography by Ashkan Mortezapour)

The textile-heavy design – the tree is entirely adorned with drapes of varying shades of pink tulle – reflects Ilinčić’s own collections, which alongside colour and print feature an array of richly crafted materials. Her S/S 2024 show (among our London Fashion Week S/S 2024 highlights), for example, contrasted fluid forms in textures of sand-washed silk satin, naia crepe, georgette and fil coupé with the brutalist architecture of London’s Barbican Centre. Here, the draped pieces of fabric, each painstakingly cut and crafted by the Roksanda team in London, draw inspiration from the Norwegian textile artist Hanne Friis. Friis, who makes use of materials like silk stockings, latex gloves, and discarded textiles, creates intricately ruched and woven textiles which she hopes evoke the ‘corporeal’ intricacies of the human body and the natural world.

‘For one of my previous collections, I used this very particular bright pink tulle,’ says Ilinčić of the tree’s distinct palette. ‘I wanted to incorporate my design language – like my signature colour-blocking – in a conceptual way, a way that isn’t usually seen on a Christmas tree.’ On her own tree at home – which she creates with her daughter – she enjoys experimenting with colour and form (one year, an artist friend created hand-blown glass adornments), though you will always find baubles that Ilinčić has collected throughout her life. ‘They always end up there because they have an emotional value.’

Roksanda Christmas tree

The tree in daylight, standing in the Pulitzer hotel’s courtyard

(Image credit: Photography by Suat Aray)

To mark the occasion, Ilinčić invited a number of people to a celebratory dinner, where guests – including the photographer Paul Kooiker, Wallpaper* editor-in-chief Sarah Douglas, founder of Young/The Agency Ashlee Janelle Danso, artist Lissa Brandon, and Dj Zoë Janice, among others – dined in one of the hotel’s historic chandelier-lit dining rooms. The evocative dishes, in part inspired by the colours and textures of Ilinčić’s work included scallop crudo (topped with a shimmer of gold leaf and caviar), burrata, beetroot and fig, sole with sweet and sour pumpkin and radish vinaigrette, and a perfectly pink macaron for dessert in flavours of hibiscus, rose and raspberry. Together, it was the perfect primer – and an artful inspiration point – for a month of celebratory dinners ahead.

‘Christmas is a time to connect people, whether you celebrate it or not,’ says Ilinčić of how to host such a gathering. ’It’s a time to celebrate all the good things about life. To me, the decoration of the table is as important as the tree – the flowers, the setting, it lifts the whole event to something magical. And then there’s the conversation, the food, that follows. And the clothes, of course!’

Roksanda Christmas Tree

Ilinčić’s festive table, where guests gathered after the tree lighting

(Image credit: Photography by Ashkan Mortezapour)
Fashion Features Editor

Jack Moss is the Fashion Features Editor at Wallpaper*, joining the team in 2022. Having previously been the digital features editor at AnOther and digital editor at 10 and 10 Men magazines, he has also contributed to titles including i-D, Dazed, 10 Magazine, Mr Porter’s The Journal and more, while also featuring in Dazed: 32 Years Confused: The Covers, published by Rizzoli. He is particularly interested in the moments when fashion intersects with other creative disciplines – notably art and design – as well as championing a new generation of international talent and reporting from international fashion weeks. Across his career, he has interviewed the fashion industry’s leading figures, including Rick Owens, Pieter Mulier, Jonathan Anderson, Grace Wales Bonner, Christian Lacroix, Kate Moss and Manolo Blahnik.