The Irish Channel neighborhood has a rich history. A large portion of its boundaries were the City of Lafayette, before being annexed into New Orleans. Current day, it’s a very hip, walkable area where you’re going to know all your neighbors. There are plenty of brand new builds that has some old school residents who turn their noses up at it. But, trust, there are plenty of old homes left for you to admire.
Enough about the homes though, let’s take a look at some of the local businesses that grace the Irish Channel.
As I was walking in Urban Roots, you could smell the Christmas trees they have outside for purchase. It will definitely get you into the holiday spirit. When wandering through the plants, you will hear the fountains in the yard and the goats making noise. A bunny, sitting on the front counter, will greet you at the counter inside. Their Tchoupitoulas location has been open for 6 years now. The plants here are mostly locally grown in Louisiana, but some are from surrounding states like Mississippi & Tennessee. Besides plants & pots, they have seasonal decorations for sale too. I can also vouch for their succulent selection. If you’d like, you can just pop by to say hello to all the animals they have hanging out – goats, chickens, bunnies, fish, ducks, a cat, & Shelly the Tortoise!
Simon Sign Shop
The open shed, outdoor studio where the Simon Sign Shop is located is connected to his wife’s antique shop on Magazine. It felt so “Naturally N’awlins” because his signs & artwork are so common around the city. As I was browsing, Simon was walking around and casually said, “Don’t stand still too long or I’ll get you to buy something,” with a smile and a laugh. He got me. I bought multiple things. He opened up this shop right after Katrina. He said that most people don’t even know he’s there until they are driving down Jackson to head to Wal-mart. The outdoor area has different pieces of his hanging around, which are all for purchase. If you’re looking for something a little smaller, he’s got coffee mugs, magnets, & his book. He will even sign the book for you!
Originally on Oak Street, Lionheart Prints opened in June of 2016. They opened up shop in the Irish Channel in September. While I was walking around with Liz, the owner, she was radiating excitement about her business and gave me a little background about all the different collections they have. Her passion about it all made me delighted about all of the products. They have a small production area in the back since all of their cards are made in house. While not everything in the shop is local, it’s all small businesses trying to hustle. December 1st-12th, Lionheart will be hosting a different pop-up every day called “12 Days of Local.” Bonus while I was there- they were building a gingerbread house out of cardboard boxes and it was awesome!