Friday, May 27, 2016

Fair Trade clothing line Passion Lilie opens in Bywater

Posted By on Fri, May 27, 2016 at 1:54 PM

The new summer 2016 collection is for sale at Passion Lilie. - KATIE SCHMIDT
  • The new summer 2016 collection is for sale at Passion Lilie.
Passion Lilie (3207 Burgundy St., 504-408-1279), a Fair Trade, eco-friendly women's clothing and accessory line designed in New Orleans by owner Katie Schmidt, celebrated the grand opening of its Bywater storefront this month. It replaces Bon Castor, a gift shop which occupied the retail space from 2012 through spring 2016. 

Prior to opening the storefront, Schmidt sold her eco-friendly cotton garments at art markets, festivals and more than 50 stores throughout the U.S. "We had a small workshop in the back of a store but needed more room for design and inventory space," Schmidt says. "This opportunity came up in Bywater, and it was perfect."

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Sunday, May 1, 2016

Bookstores celebrate New Orleans Independent Bookstore Day May 7

Posted By on Sun, May 1, 2016 at 2:54 PM

  • Tracie Morris Schaefer

New Orleans takes a better-late-than-never approach to Independent Bookstore Day. While booksellers in other cities will fete themselves on Saturday, April 30, local stores dodge the dreaded Jazz Fest conflict by postponing their celebration until Saturday, May 7. If you feel like you can never have too many books, here's our roundup of literary-minded activities to take part in.

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Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Expanded Hong Kong Market offers bulk produce, liquor and more

Posted By on Wed, Mar 9, 2016 at 4:45 PM

Hong Kong Market offers an array of Vietnamese, Japanese and Chinese foods and more.
  • Hong Kong Market offers an array of Vietnamese, Japanese and Chinese foods and more.

Hong Kong Market (925 Behrman Road, Gretna, 504-394-7075) gained a reputation for its extensive selection of Asian foods, particularly Vietnamese items. It has expanded in size and offers a greater array of ethnic specialty items, bulk produce and wine and spirits.

“Our Hispanic section, the Indian food, Caribbean — everything’s grown,” says Sean Lyons, a San Francisco bail bondsman who moved to New Orleans last June to spearhead the renovation for his sister-in-law, Hong Kong Market owner, Jennifer Campbell. “We’re now a one-stop shop.”

The market added 11,000 square feet of display space, including a walk-in produce cooler. Alongside banh mi and other prepared foods, there are Taiwanese drinks, exotic fruit smoothies and more. It also has increased its “American” department.

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Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Maple Street Book Shop to stay open — at least for a while longer

Posted By on Wed, Dec 30, 2015 at 11:21 AM

Gladin Scott announced Maple Street Book Shop will remain open through spring.
  • Gladin Scott announced Maple Street Book Shop will remain open through spring.

Maple Street Book Shop
owner Gladin Scott had planned to hold a clearance sale after Christmas, but it's taken on a new purpose. In early October, Scott announced the bookshop would close at the end of the year. But that news spurred a wave of support that has enabled him to keep the store open.

"It started as a wake, but it turned into a celebration," Scott says.

Scott announced Sunday the store would remain open and held the sale as a thank you to customers. The store is using proceeds to buy new inventory, ordering new releases and scheduling events for coming months, he says.

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Thursday, October 1, 2015

Maple Street Book Shop to close at end of 2015

Posted By on Thu, Oct 1, 2015 at 1:56 PM

Gladin Scott is a longtime customer and owner of Maple Street Book Shop. - COURTESY MAPLE STREET BOOK SHOP
  • Gladin Scott is a longtime customer and owner of Maple Street Book Shop.

Maple Street Book Shop owner Gladin Scott announced the store will close at the end of 2015.

"With dwindling sales, it's tough to keep open a bookshop that isn't self-sustaining," he said.

Scott said changing technology contributed to the difficulties of keeping the shop open.

"I think technology has changed the way people read and buy books," he said.

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Wednesday, July 8, 2015

New Orleans: We're getting a Trader Joe's (well, Metairie is)

Posted By on Wed, Jul 8, 2015 at 4:33 PM


Much-loved grocery chain Trader Joe's will be opening its first New Orleans-area location next year, according to a report from WWL-TV:
The Los Angeles-based grocery store company announced it is opening a store at the corner of Veterans and N. Labarre in Metairie. The store will open in the second half of 2016.
The news still isn't on the company's web page where it lists upcoming openings. WWL-TV reported the store will not open until late 2016.

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Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Girl down: Big Freedia's memoir hits ... as does "Big Freedia in Your Pocket"

Posted By on Tue, Jul 7, 2015 at 3:58 PM


Popular New Orleans bounce artist Big Freedia’s memoir, Big Freedia: God Save the Queen Diva, officially goes on sale today. The Queen Diva's autobiography deals with her upbringing and the “relationship between her personal life and her career as an artist,” according to a summary on the Octavia Books website. Freedia will be appearing at Octavia Books (513 Octavia St.) on Fri., July 10 at 6 p.m., where she will be reading from the book and signing copies.

Also available for sale this week is a new product called “Big Freedia In Your Pocket,” a small plastic soundboard that, when pressed, emits some of Big Freedia’s catchphrases (a la "Cajun in Your Pocket" and "Mr. Okra in Your Pocket").

Among the familiar Freedia-isms are “You already know!” “Release your wiggle!” and “Big Freedia, Queen Diva, you besta believa!” The gadget is available on the Fleurty Girl website for $10. 

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Thursday, June 18, 2015

West Elm holds an Etsy pop-up shop Saturday, June 20

Posted By on Thu, Jun 18, 2015 at 4:21 PM

West Elm features goods crafted by more than 200 designers nationwide, including 11 locals.
  • West Elm features goods crafted by more than 200 designers nationwide, including 11 locals.

From 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, June 20, West Elm (2929 Magazine St., 888-922-4119) hosts a pop-up shop curated by Juley Le, founder of New Orleans lifestyle blog Upperlyne & Co and food editor at The Everygirl. Le rounded up eight of her favorite local Etsy sellers to promote at the event, which will feature food by District Donuts and music by DJ BabyGirl.

"We have artists and jewelry makers and someone who specializes in furniture," Le says. "Online shopping is great, but there is nothing like experiencing that product so you can make a good decision as to whether you want to invest in it."

Below, Le shares her thoughts on the pop-up shop and the makers who will sell their goods there. (All vendors are new to West Elm and Magazine Street.)

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Friday, April 10, 2015

A preview of Warby Parker Frame Studio

Posted By on Fri, Apr 10, 2015 at 4:59 PM

The high-ceilinged space features original floors, beams and brickwork. - MISSY WILKINSON
  • The high-ceilinged space features original floors, beams and brickwork.

Warby Parker
was launched in February 2010, when its four cofounders were still in business school. Featuring stylish in-house design, a charitable "buy a pair, give a pair" program, a $95 price tag for all glasses and a free home try-on system GQ dubbed "the Netflix of eyewear," the online business thrived. Though Warby Parker doesn't release sales information, the company has donated 1 million pairs of glasses, according to reporting by Wired — so it's safe to say they've sold that many, too.

Now the retailer is going brick and mortar. Its first storefront opened in New York City's Soho neighborhood in 2013, and its 12th location opens tomorrow in New Orleans at 3964 Magazine St.

"[The growth] happened organically," says Warby Parker communications manager Kaki Read."Our brand philosophy is that it has to be a blended experience — online and offline. When we launched, we experienced people wanting to try on and touch the product and experience the brand."

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Tuesday, March 24, 2015

CUE presents The Warehouse Sale Sunday, March 29

Posted By on Tue, Mar 24, 2015 at 10:40 AM

Shoppers peruse racks at last fall's Warehouse Sale. - PHOTO BY SOPO NOLA (WWW. SOPONOLA.COM)
  • Shoppers peruse racks at last fall's Warehouse Sale.

It's a trope of femininity: sample sales where women wrestle over discounted handbags and strip down to their Spanx in communal dressing rooms. On Sunday, March 29 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., this rite of fashionista passage takes over a banquet room at the Mellow Mushroom's Metairie location (3131 Veterans Memorial Blvd.).

"It's down, dirty and aggressive, but you will leave with the best deals from the most amazing boutiques in the city," says stylist Aimeé Gowland, who launched The Warehouse Sale in 2012 with partner Corrie Pellerin. "We like to call it controlled chaos. It's not a pretty thing."

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