Couture Costume – Out to Lunch – It’s New Orleans
Only in New Orleans – Mardi Gras and movie costumes meet haute couture, over lunch.
If you grow up here in New Orleans, you don’t realize till some point later in life that the rest of the country doesn’t live like you do.
Sure, other places have smooth streets, and you can make a left at the lights without having to go another half-block and make a U-turn, but they don’t have the music we do. They don’t have the food we do. And another thing most people in America don’t have, is a part of their closet or a big storage bin devoted to costumes.
Here, we all have a collection of costumes ready for anything from Mardi Gras to Halloween. Some of us also have a collection of wigs, and many of us have masks. And, since 2011 things have gotten even better for serious costumers. That’s when Wingate Jones opened his Southern Costume Company.
Wingate’s New Orleans Southern Costume Company provides costumes for movies and TV shows that are produced down here, including Academy Award winning 12 Years A Slave, True Detective, and many more.
Looking haute in the heat
Another thing that is different about life in New Orleans compared to other cities is that, outside of Mardi Gras, you don’t have any pressure to look sharply dressed. We are very tolerant of appearance here. You can go most places in a tank-top or T-shirt, shorts, and flip-flops. And people do. Which makes the fashion house Claudia Croazzo something of an anomaly.
Claudia Croazzo was a successful fashion house and label in the UK that relocated to New Orleans in 2018.The label has a home in a stylish storefront on Magazine Street and has very quickly established itself selling couture, made-to-order dresses, ready to wear fashion, and beachwear.
The founder and fashion designer at Claudia Croazzo is, not coincidentally, Claudia Croazzo.
Photos over lunch at Commander’s Palace – where costumes frequently meet haute couture and haute cuisine – by Jill Lafleur.