New Orleans is an artist town; one of what feels like a diminishing number of places in the country where one can actually make a living off of one’s art. Art markets are a big source of that income, and citywide closures and cancellations have made this a grim and uncertain time for our local artists. When things return to normal be sure to check them out at places like the Piety Market in Exile, the Market at Dat Dog, and the Palace Market on Frenchmen Street.
In the meantime, if online shopping is your quarantine solution, consider supporting some of these local makers virtually! There’s also an “Aid for Palace Market Artist Vendors” GoFundMe page if you’d prefer to help that way.
Cake Face Soaping
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Soaps and sanitizers are really having a moment right now, so why not stock up from a local vendor? Cake Face Soaping provides all natural, vegan, cruelty-free handmade soaps, skin care, and bath products. Find the full range of products at their website.
Household Goods/Green Products
Vintage Green Review
Sarah Andert runs this package-free, zero-waste booth at the Piety Market in Exile, which is where Vintage Green Review typically makes around 80% of its sales. She offers both handmade reusable household items such as cloth “UNpaper” towels and facial rounds, as well as vintage items like glassware and metal tins. She is now putting her efforts into her Etsy store, hoping for increased online sales in the absence of art markets.
Piru & Chreegu Shop
Geraldine Brezca (a.k.a. Piru) and Christian Schirach (a.k.a. Chreegu) are multi-talented makers who ordinarily sell their wares at markets and boutiques across New Orleans but now “need to find other ways to keep it going while staying safe.” You can pick up some of their signature Chirac’s spice blend or a variety of ceramic goods at their online shop.
NOLA Bon Vivant
Laura Scariano pops up as NOLA Bon Vivant at markets throughout New Orleans, and was even scheduled to appear at the Piccolo Spoleto market in Charleston later this Spring before quarantine measures were put into place. She’s been making functional wheel-thrown pottery and sculptures for over 20 years. She’s currently running a sale at her online shop, where you’ll find a wide variety of ceramic and screen-printed goods, including her famous “tata teacups.”
Pilar Z. McCracken
Pilar Z. McCracken is a local artist and printmaker who hand prints her New Orleans-inspired woodcuts and t-shirts. She usually runs a booth at the Palace Market; in the meantime check out her beautifully-curated Etsy!
Batture & Bloom
Batture & Bloom is a cap company inspired by and designed for New Orleans. The name refers to the Mississippi River Batture, which provides the tangible resilience New Orleans needs to survive the springtime’s swollen river. They are channeling that resilience as steady pop-ups such as the Market at Dat Dog close down for the foreseeable future. Check out their Crescent City-inspired collection at their online shop.
Wild Fox Medicine
Wild Fox Medicine is a small, women-run embroidery business. In addition to running a booth at the Palace Market on Frenchmen a few times a week, they sell patches at various local boutiques that have also closed due to COVID-19. As a result, they say sales have dropped to an all-time low. But they’re diligently working and prepared to take your online orders, so check out their shop!
Hand-Stitched Upcycled Goods
Stitch It To The Patriarchy
Nina Harris founded Stitch It To The Patriarchy on the idea that people can wear cool clothes that don’t kill the planet. She hand stitches powerful messages on colorful staples like sweatshirts and hats so as to engage political discourse, educate people, and provide an alternative to fast fashion. Check out her online shop, and note that she can also accommodate custom requests!
Fair Trade Clothing
Katie Schmidt designs the cute and comfy fair trade items for her Passion Lilie brand, but design is only a small piece of her business. Her mission is to empower artisans across the world by creating dignified employment opportunities; she creates her designs in partnership with block printers and weavers in India, and has been able to support 40 different artisans in the US and India with fair wages. Festival season is typically one of her busiest times, so she has been greatly affected by market closures. Shop new and old looks at her website in the meantime.
Costume Design/Fine Art
Emiliana Stein Art
Emiliana Stein gets the bulk of her income selling her whimsical costume creations and paintings at art markets, with costume commissions for local events as side income. With the recent cancellations she feels as though everything has come to “a screeching halt,” and she’s concerned for herself and her fellow artists. Still, she has faith her community will get through this by helping each other out as they always have. At her online shop find costume items, paintings, and photography.
Donna Guidry Designs
Donna Guidry has created custom jewelry for 25 years, drawing from her Louisiana upbringing and French roots for inspiration. Her jewelry is “feminine yet edgy, and always timeless.” Donna’s excited for her newest collection: leather ‘hipster’ bags that can be clipped onto belt loops or attached to a chain as a crossbody or shoulder bag. You can find the hipster bags and more at her online shop.
Jewelry From Recycled Cymbals
Collin and Roz Galyean are the husband-wife duo behind Secondline Jewels: a company that transforms old cymbals into unique jewelry. They even have a ‘Signature Line’ featuring jewelry made from doubloons cut from a collection of famous drummers’ donated cymbals (with 50% of proceeds going to the charity of the drummer’s choice). Find their full range of products on their website.
Alison Ford Metals
Alison and Cliff Pitre are another husband-wife duo who use traditional metalsmithing techniques such as soldering, forming, carving, stamping, and stone-setting to create their pieces. Alison designs each piece with natural and architectural inspiration from New Orleans in mind, and they make everything in their local studio. Check out their online shop to make purchases while the markets are closed.
Brandy Dufrene is a lifelong resident of South Louisiana who creates empowerment art to advocate for overlooked causes and people. Her goal is to highlight the resilience, strength, and beauty that we all share. She’s primarily an illustrator, often making her own natural dyes for pieces from wine, teas, and spices, but she also takes photos. Many of her creations are available for sale on her website.
Kajani Design Studio
Katherine Paredes makes earrings, necklaces, and New Orleans-themed paintings under her brand Kajani Design Studio. You can find examples of her jewelry on Instagram and paintings on Facebook, which serves as her primary online business hub (contact her via Messenger or at the phone number on the website for business inquiries).