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You better not pout. You best not cry.
But Santa is leaving the French Quarter.
After 44 years in the French Quarter, conveniently located on Decatur Street, Santa’s Quarters will see its last Christmas. A landmark for generations of tourists and locals, the ornaments from Santa’s Quarters will be passed down like a Yuletide legacy in families from all over. It’s crazy to even think about it now, but a store solely dedicated to Christmas made it for so long and became “a thing” with shoppers year-round. Perhaps it was a Christmas miracle all along.
Now, with an undetermined closure date, Santa’s Quarters will open and operate until all the inventory is gone. This is your last chance to get the most unique New Orleans Christmas ornaments and all things Cajun Santa.
Yet as one Christmas shopping door closes, another one (or four) opens. Of course, New Orleans is a great place for unique gifts any season, but there’s quite a few places that one can shop for nearly any and everyone on your Naughty and Nice lists. So, we have compiled a list of the best local places for uniquely NOLA gifts.
Lionheart Prints, 3312 Magazine Street
With every gift, a unique card should come just like an appetizer before your entrée. One-of-a-kind awaits on Magazine Street. Lionheart Prints is a place where vintage meets new. A place where hand-drawn designs, cards, and envelopes meet the letterpress print studio for one-of-a-kind gifts and cards for the hopelessly optimistic. This shop targets an audience seeking a Cajun and NOLA-style play on words, from Christmas cards that say “heaux heaux heaux” to their take on a popular catch phrase, “Yeah, you write” for those in need of stationery and the like. Here’s a place that will often remind you not to be a Grinch and shop local.
Home Malone NOLA, 629 N. Carrollton Ave & 4610 Magazine Street
Two locations mean that you could get a lot of your Christmas shopping done on Magazine Street, which is a great part of the city to shop for those who wish to venture outside The French Quarter. Home Malone NOLA: it’s crafty, it’s clever, and it’s the little store that could. New Orleans-themed Christmas ornaments and door hangers are just the tip of the “nice-berg” when it comes to gifts for loved ones. This is a great place for locals and tourists alike, and it’s okay if you don’t understand what “makin’ groceries” means; they’ll NOLA explain it to you. Here is a place that either says “I’ve been to NOLA”, “I’m from NOLA” or “I’m moving to NOLA and never looking back!” Just about any New Orleans knick-knack that one cannot find on Amazon can be found here at Home Malone NOLA.
Vice & Graft, 927 Royal Street
Meanwhile, back in the over 303-year-old French Quarter, a new shop selling something old explodes onto the scene. Vice & Graft boasts selected vintage apparel for those timeless looks in the world of antique fashions. Like classic cars, refurbished leather jackets from another time need only for you to test drive them and make yourself look cooler than winter this year.
This is the ultimate vintage clothing store in New Orleans, perfect for anyone that rocks or needs to rock a new style from old threads.
Dirty Coast, 5631 Magazine/ 1320 Magazine/ 713 Royal Street
The store that encourages you to be a New Orleanian wherever you are has three locations, which means that a Dirty Coast is near you just about wherever you are in New Orleans. Wearing shirts from Dirty Coast is like signaling a secret handshake to locals. Known for their t-shirts and hoodies, Dirty Coast also sells ornaments for your tree, but not Christmas ornaments. They sell “almost Mardi Gras” ornaments. This is a shop with a great sense of humor and pride in Louisiana and New Orleans. They style in anything from hats and beanies with iconic images of the St. Louis Cathedral to the nostalgic K&B stores logo. There’s a subculture of people who travel here every year, and every year they bring back a tree ornament. If you or someone you know fits this description, then for only $10, Dirty Coast can hook you up for a classic wood ornament that screams New Orleans or just screams at you.