Christmas Creep Season Kicks Off Nationwide

Image courtesy of Jonathan

Every holiday has two seasons: its actual season, and its creep season. The latter is that time of year during which people complain that it’s too soon to be selling decorations, cards, costumes, or other items for that holiday. Even things that aren’t really holidays can creep up, like back-to-school season. Here are some Christmas Creep sightings from across the country, so you’ll know where to pick up an artificial evergreen in mid-September for future reference.

We haven’t heard any reports of bizarrely early Christmas displays at Kmart, perhaps because our readers are running low on Kmart stores to visit and find Santa Bear hordes. The chain did, however, continue its streak of early Christmas commercials encouraging shoppers to use layaway. You may see that on TV soon if you haven’t already.

There are three general exceptions to holiday creep: Hallmark, warehouse clubs, and craft stores.

Hallmark stores put out their ornaments in July for some reason that no one who isn’t a Hallmark ornament collector fully understands.

Warehouse clubs like BJ’s, Costco, and Sam’s Club have a lot of business customers, who buy their holiday decorations earlier than the rest of us. That’s why, for example, Jonathan spotted this artificial Christmas tree at a Sam’s store on Sept. 5th.

(Jonathan)

(Jonathan)

Finally, craft stores stock some items, like holiday-themed embroidery kits and blank ornaments, so creative types can stock up early and begin customizing them. Hobby Lobby, however, has taken this idea and run with it, and you can find Christmas decorations that are not for craft projects starting very early in the year.

Regular retailers have no excuse. Walmart starts putting out Christmas stuff as soon as there’s room on the shelf, and it confuses customers anew every year. A reader sent along this tweet:

ZChris, of course, is not alone in being baffled at holiday displays at Walmart.

Target, eager to stay competitive, has joined in.

If you see any truly scary examples of early holidaying when you’re out, snap a picture and send it along to us at tips@consumerist.com, or share it with us on Twitter or Facebook.