Editor’s Blog: Style Hunting at New Orleans Jazz Fest

485475_10151465963419926_750353852_nCoachella it ain’t. There are no flower-crowned fashionistas in outfits selected weeks in advance; there are no celebrities posing for photographers with $700 handbags; and there are definitely no swag-filled gifting suites.

This is New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Fest—(swamp)land of zydeco, blues and jambalaya. If there’s a washboard in sight, it’s onstage being strummed at the Fais Do Do tent, not on someone’s abs. Jazz Festival 2013, Lil' Buck Sinegal's Blues Band

Here, it’s all about the music, music, music, not to mention crawfish bread and alligator pie. Prefer Prada? Well, don’t let the screen door hit you on the way out!

Elle magazine just did a feature on international festival style and omitted Jazz Fest completely. But having just returned from yet another boozy-bluesy N’Awlins weekend, I beg to differ. The style here is just a bit more…eclectic.

Claire and Ingrid

First things first: It can be hellishly hot and humid in New Orleans, so straw sunhats or decorated umbrellas are on everyone’s packing list. My friends Claire Varney (left) and Ingrid Wright get into the spirit.


In the city of no judgements, men have just as much fashion fun as the women jazzing up their accessories. Knowing how to twirl a lady around is key, too, as the music (literally) never stops here.

A Mardi Gras Indian parades during the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival in New Orleans

While colloquially called Jazz Fest, there’s really not that much jazz going on. It’s Jazz & Heritage Fest, so there’s a lot of celebration of cultures, from Creole to Native American. Huge colorful feather headdresses get everyone movin’ and groovin’.


Yours truly having a Bloody Mary at Luizza’s. If you’ve been to Fest, you’ve surely hit this famous dive coming or going, probably both. A shout out to my friends Stephan & Co jewelry and Laundry by Shelli Segal hats for the accessories (who said there was no fashion at Fest?).2013-04-27 17.37.51

Speaking of fashion, it seemed fitting that I found this elegantly hatted woman outside the Wine & Champagne stand. She definitely looked fine enough for a day at the races!


Despite the psychedelic coat, gloves, fringed umbrella, hat, sunglasses and bag, her smile still wins for best accessory.


The signature food at Fest and in the city overall cannot be stressed enough. From gumbo to po-boys to pulled pork with endless varieties of hot sauce, the food completely sets the tone for the weekend. But while I can’t get enough crawfish ettouffe or the Fest’s famous Crawfish Monica, the crawfish boil (shown above) is way too creepy crawly for me.


Last but not least, don’t forget to swing by the French Market for a real alligator head souvenir. Hope y’all enjoyed the photos. See you next year and “laissez les bon temps roulez!”





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Lauren Parker, Accessories Magazine

Lauren Parker, Editor-in-Chief, Accessories Magazine & accessoriesmagazine.com
As Editor-in-Chief of Accessories for the past 14 years, Lauren Parker has covered women's fashion accessories both from a retail business perspective and a fashion point of view. She frequently judges industry design competitions and loves seeing the next generation of designers come into their own. In previous full-time magazine jobs and freelance gigs, she’s written about practically every angle of fashion lifestyle living, including women's fashion accessories, fine jewelry, Caribbean travel, private jets, Hampton’s real estate, the New York art scene, the bridal industry, men’s lifestyle and being a mom. She loves meeting designers and seeing how their latest offerings capture the current zeitgeist and fit into the entire cultural and social picture.

  • Lookin’ good in that hat Lauren 🙂

  • Enjoying your playful approach to fashion at the Festival and feeling the energy and excitement of it. Think I’ll have to put this on my travel itinerary next year.

  • Love the energy of the place!
    I definitely need to be there next year.