Eyewear label Krewe is hitting the road, but its vehicle is far from typical. A tiny house is toting the brand’s latest collection of frames cross country, ensuring an idiosyncratic retail experience for all who enter. The mode of transportation has ties to the brand’s New Orleans roots, where the city’s rich Afro-Caribbean heritage has given rise to small, rectangular houses. They’re known as “shotgun homes,” because one could fire a clear shot from the front door through the back door, and Krewe’s 154.8-square-foot version is a to-scale replica.
This pared-down mobile store was made in collaboration with the Preservation Tiny House Company, utilizing locally sourced and sustainable materials. It made its debut at SXSW earlier this month, later kicking off a national tour on its home turf at the French Quarter Festival. With stops along the Gulf Coast this summer and on both coasts later this year, the Tiny House promises to make a case for the power of a petite shop, as well as the ability of New Orleans to impact culture beyond its city limits. “At Krewe we love hearing that retail is dying,” says founder Stirling Barrett, who introduced his brand to festival-goers in 2013 via a bicycle cart. “It makes us work harder to create unique buying experiences.” True to form, Barrett’s Tiny House cements Krewe as a retail innovator.