What does it mean to “be a New Orleanian, wherever you are?”
“You’re a little bit louder than everybody else, you’re a better storyteller than everyone in the room, you probably can cook fairly well, Gregarious, ” says Blake Haney, creator of locally printed, locally designed T-shirt shop Dirty Coast Press.
Since 2005, Haney has been defining the New Orleanian one T-shirt at a time, playfully illustrating iconic theme and identities from around the area.
“You have to know a little about New Orleans or Louisiana, the music, culture the food, sayings to really get the shirt. It’s like we have a secret everyone else wants to know,” he says.
What’s not so secret is the cheeky tone. Puns always fully intended. But even if you are from New Orleans you may not understand the joke… or you may just think you do. Many of the T-shirt designs are neighborhood specific. “Calling out certain neighborhoods is trying to design something that speaks to that area” says Haney, who hopes to create a design for every neighborhood in the city.
“If we put a design out that’s a little too literal people will send us angry E-mails… we have one for the Lower Garden District in the works, one for Algiers Point, there’s an idea for Uptown.”
Dirty Coast Press T-shirts are not just for locals, they are for anyone who feels a connection to the city. Regardless of where you’re from or where you live, If you love New Orleans, there’s a shirt on their wall for you… to plot the coordinates of not only where you are, but who you are.
Currently, they have two locations Julia St. and Magazine St. you can also purchase the food themed Tees at local Rouses grocery stores. For more information, visit their website www.dirtycoast.com