I have to admit that my life sometimes gets a little too hectic to begin to understand what's going on in the world beyond the streets of NOLA. So I said it, don't hate me for being honest! I'm also a bit guilty of not totally comprehending recent buzzwords like sustainable goods and fair trade. Isn't it just all about being good to the earth and going well beyond just your plain old recycling? Read on and see how I changed my tune.

iHeartnola is all about finding truly unique gems around town and I think Branch Out (2022 Magazine St. New Orleans, LA 70130 / 504.371.5913) is one of those. Started by two very talented trendspotting friends Thiri and Lauren, Branch Out specializes in vintage + sustainable goods and clothing. Here's their mantra :

"We work with companies that employ environmentally responsible practices, including: using sustainable materials, using energy efficient and low-impact production, investing in renewable energy and carbon offsets, maximizing recycling, and reducing waste. In addition, these companies, designers and artists engage in fair trade, support organic agriculture, sweat-shop free production, and various nonprofit groups."










So even though American Apparel paved the way for many, I think Branch Out has put a stake in the ground for being truly innovative in their offerings. Both sexes are represented, and the selection allows any well minded shopper to get outfitted from head to toe and feel good about it. From jeans and t's, to dresses and jewelry, Branch Out may be the only shop you stroll in and out of. Some of the items that really stood out for me was their selection of vintage shirts and the ultra soft t's that lined each side of the store. Lastly, one of the coolest things they do at Branch Out is they cut up old cereal boxes and use the pieces for their price tags. Brilliant!

Branch Out is one of the main reasons why I dig the 2000 block of Magazine St. It's surrounded by ultra cool shops, boutiques, restaurants, salons that reflect the laid back side of uptown.