I was shopping the other day at the State Street Macy’s store (formerly Marshall Fields) and saw all the Martha Stewart products that they are carrying now. I wasn’t impressed with the quality of the materials and the designs were just ok, and not as fabulous as you would expect from Martha Stewart, but I found out something interesting while talking to one of the sales people. They said that Martha Stewart was commissioned to do the Marshall Field’s Christmas Tree in the Walnut Room this year. She mentioned it because the Christmas department of Macy’s was being unpacked right now and they expected it to be open to the public by September. Then in November they have an official Walnut Room Christmas tree lighting ceremony the week before Thanksgiving in November and Martha Stewart is supposed to be the guest of honor and light the tree. I think she must be doing ornaments and tree decorating designs for all the Macy’s stores, but it is nice that Martha will fly all the way out here for the ceremony at Macy’s. I wasn’t to keen on her housewares, kitchen utensils or bedding linnens this time, but I am hopeful that she will do some vintage beautiful designs for the enormous Walnut Room tree.
Marshall Field’s Walnut Room has been a tradition for many families for years. Macy’s was nice and left it pretty much the same when they bought the store and you can still see the giant tree in the middle of the room. The Walnut Room is a nice restaurant (with wood paneled walls of course) in the middle of the department store. It is on the 7th floor, on the opposite side of the food court. There you can take a break from your shopping trip and have an elegant lunch or dinner in their dining room. They have a lot of favorites there that have been on the menu for years. For the Holidays and Christmas they take the tables out of the center under the 3 story cathedral celing and assemble a giant 3 story tree. Then a special designer like (Martha Stewart in 2007) is asked to decorate it with custom designed ornaments specially for Marshall Fields and now Macy’s. You can buy the special ornaments too to take home for your tree. The last ones done for Marshall Fields in 2005 were from Swarofski and I bought one because it was the last year we would see the tree as Marshall Fields. Last year was the first year the Walnut Room was open with Macy’s ownership and we went and it was nice. Wedgewood china was the designer of the tree last year in 2006. The entire tree sparkled with twinkling lights and had light baby blue and white ornaments on all the branches. The dining experience at the Walnut Room hasn’t changed much, it was still good. I recommend the pot pie and the Pointsettia drink. (champaigne and cranberry juice) The service is good and the prices are reasonable considering this is downtown Chicago on State Street.