The Best Local Gifts and Souvenir Shops in New Orleans
When I travel, I love to pick up t-shirts featuring inside jokes I might never truly understand. Some of my favorites?
“Drink Wisconsinbly” — Milwaukee
“Kentucky is sexy” (donning a naked Burt Reynolds (RIP) sprawled out across the state of Kentucky ) — Lexington
“Keep Minnesota passive aggressive. (Or Don’t. Whatever you think is best.)” — Minneapolis
I’m always a bit surprised at how hard it is to find great stuff like this in other cities (I’m looking at you, Chattanooga). Fortunately, New Orleans has no shortage of amazing stores featuring locally-approved apparel and souvenirs for natives and visitors alike.
Where to Buy Local Art & Souvenirs in NOLA
Whether you’re new to town, looking to spice up your wardrobe, kitchen, or children with some New Orleans charm, or just visiting for the weekend, NOLA has the best selection of locally made apparel, souvenirs, crafts, and presents I’ve ever seen.
Check out these must-see spots for New Orleans Souvenirs.
If you’re looking for a fun shirt to show off your New Orleans spirit, look no further than Dirty Coast. This cute brand, with multiple locations throughout the city, has a broad selection of apparel and souvenirs displaying inside jokes that it sometimes takes a true local to interpret.
Dirty Coast has a range of other goodies you can stuff in your carry on like New Orleans themed pins, socks, post cards, books, and free rotating stickers! At least half my wardrobe is from Dirty Coast, and my conscience is pretty clean about that.
Defend New Orleans
One of the edgier New Orleans brands, DNO is another great stop for local apparel and goods. Their iconic skull and fleur de lis is a staple in New Orleans fashion and culture. The name itself, which they claim has a flexible interpretation, can stand for anything from “Defend New Orleans, Dedicated to New Orleans, Demand New Outcomes, Dismantle Normalized Oppression. Discover New Objects. Down. Not. Out.” all of which resonate with the spirit of the New Orleans people.
Fleurty Girl (as the name implies) is a bit more lady-focussed, but lately they’ve been offering a wider selection of things for the fellas. They offer lots of fun, punny, and local humor apparel, as well as NOLA-themed home goods and baby gear. And with several locations throughout New Orleans and Metairie, it should be easy to find a location to suit your souvenir needs.
Dat Dog Art Market
This fun, little market is worth a stop if you’re looking for some local art to fill your walls. Stop by Dat Dog every Saturday and Sunday and nab a brat while you check out anything from handmade jewelry to New Orleans photography metal prints.
When I need to go gift shopping, Zéle is one of the favorite (and often my only) stops. I love that there’s something for everyone, at every price point, from a variety of artists. This huge space is the home of dozens of artists and is a great spot to grab some locally-made souvenirs.
Garden District Marketplace
Right across from Zéle, The Garden District Marketplace is a fun, new space with rotating artists. It’s worth a stop if you’re cruising Magazine, because you never know what you’re going to find. With everything from wooded pop-out New Orleans scenes to oriental rugs, and handmade leather goods, there’s a little bit of something for everyone.
The French Market
All-in-all this isn’t a place I’d recommend picking up souvenirs, but it is a worthy stop on your New Orleans trip. While there are dozens of vendors selling a variety of cheap souvenirs you can pack home for the masses, what’s really worth the stop is the boozy counters that line the aisle. Across the street you’ll also find little shops with paintings from local, eclectic artists.