KREWE X NEW ORLEANS
by Kate Hopkins & Sophia Musso
New Orleans–a historic city known for its southern culture and laid-back, yet vibrant atmosphere–is a place where any and all are free to be who they are. Because of its unique culture and easy-going attitude, New Orleans has plenty of creative freedom to go around. For locals–and even newcomers–New Orleans is the perfect place for people to express themselves and their roots through the arts.
With its historical architecture, Creole cuisine, various music and art festivals, and extravagant Mardi Gras seasons, the city has produced a culture like no other.
Because of its distinct culture, New Orleans has started to make a presence in the fashion world. While it isn’t recognized as one of the “Big Four'' fashion capitals of the world, the city has certainly taken big steps by putting their own special twist on fashion.
Krewe, a New Orleans based eyewear brand, has especially changed the game for New Orleans fashion the past several years. Because the city has so many unique characteristics, Krewe founder and New Orleans native Stirling Barrett wanted to introduce New Orleans to the fashion industry in a way that no one has before.
“When people imagine New Orleans, their vision of the city is grounded in the past. Nobody thinks of it as a modern, design-oriented place, and I thought I could change that by building a fashion brand,” Barrett says.
Historically, New Orleans has never had a fashion industry or market like cities such as New York, Paris, or Los Angeles. With Krewe, Barrett wanted to mirror brands in fashion-forward cities by incorporating the city’s spirit into his brand–a common tactic for thriving brands in the fashion industry–in hopes of having the same results.
The variety of designs, colors, and styles of Krewe eyewear encourage buyers to express themselves with a pair unique to their taste and preferences, but with a New Orleans touch. In particular, the designs are derived from the city’s architecture and care-free ambience.
“New Orleans has a very playful sensibility to it: People come here to let loose, or as we say, be themselves. We’re inspired by these surroundings to create colorful and unique designs,” says Barrett.
Over the past several years, Barrett has ignited a flame in the New Orleans fashion industry. In 2016, Krewe was considered for the Vogue Fashion Fund, one of the most honorable awards in the industry. His eyewear has also been spotted on Beyonce, Gigi Hadid, and Blake Lively, expanding Krewe’s market to celebrities.
People from everywhere have gotten their hands on a pair of Krewe sunglasses, adding a touch of southern charm and a glimpse of New Orleans culture to fashion all over the map.
As Barrett hoped, the eyewear rebrands New Orleans in the fashion industry to reflect the city’s special culture in a modern and fashion-forward way. Much like the city itself, there is something–or eyewear–for everyone.