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Interview with Bayou Salvage

Written by  Slow Southern Style


When I first started Slow Southern Style I instantly knew that I wanted to showcase talented locals producing lovely, well made clothing and accessories.  Kerry Fitts of Bayou Salvage is one of these individuals. She was even sought out by Anthroplogie and her work can be purchased at the New Orleans store. Her style is "southern gothic" and no one but Kerry could describe her aesthetic better:


"Rust. Sweat. Stormy nights. Sweet Tea on the front porch. Whisky out back. House proud.Cypress moss swinging from branches.Old leather. Family secrets. Muddy back roads. Torn linen.Tent revivals. In the deep south,our atmosphere is our destiny. Whether its the heat,water,wind or hurricanes..our unique cultural experience dictates the way in which we live and how our effects survive. It is our reckoning. My work appeals to those who understand the deep South no matter who or where they are."


I've followed your work for a while and love it! Tell Slow Southern Style readers a little bit about what you do. 


I recreate the stories of the Southern women that live in my head through clothing and accessories. They are women that are resourceful like Scarlett O Hara grabbing the green velvet curtains to make the dress that makes Rhett Butler fall in love her. I grab the curtains all the time!


French Market Bag ... charcoal black ruffle tote from down de bayou

French Market Bag

Your designs have a definite "salvaged" feel to them and a romantic, dark undertone. Aside from New Orleans what else inspires your designs? 


I was born and raised in  Faulkner Country.  Many of the folks in my town were written about by old Bill and other writers. Larry Brown was my fireman. Dogs still sleep in the streets. Its sort of a lowdown magical lunatic bin. Some people say tellin stories is in the water. I think it in the whiskey myself- the whiskey one must drink because there's nothing to do out there. We romanticize it to make sense out of the pieces or at least what happened the night before. I just tell my stories with fabric, found objects and a bit of make do.

Sunny Came Home...Rococo Tuxedo Seersucker Ruffle Dress  from down de bayou fits all s m l xl plus

Rococo tuxedo dress

You recently were approached by Anthropologie to design some pieces for the New Orleans store. What was your experience like working with them?


They decided to highlight local artists and designers to promote the region. I feel very fortunate they liked my work. What an honor. 


Keep Calm and Carry on...Vintage Liberty of London Textile Cuffs

Vintage Libery of London textile cuffs

When you aren't designing what other hobbies and activities do you enjoy?


I've been pretty busy these days but hanging with my hunting dogs, road trips and the latest mystery novel or nextflix thriller keeps me going.



Define southern style.  


Southern style to me embraces the languid geography of where we live- enveloped by water below, beside and around us. Southern style is as mysterious and winsome as the bayous and eddys of the Mississippi River- calm, murky or churning.It nods to history and looks forward. It is hopeful.



Bayou Bloomers rustic ruffle pantaloon in FRENCH VANILLA..S.M.L.PLUS.from down de bayou


Purchase Bayou Salvage at the following places.





New Orleans, Louisiana:




West Columbia, South Carolina:



Last modified on Thursday, 08 November 2012
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