{SS}: Can you share with us your career background and how you got started with the store? 

{Erin}: My background is actually in theater performance, dance and Pilates. After graduating from UofM I stayed here in Detroit and did a lot of voice over work, commercials, industrial films and alike. Although I loved it, my son was very young and it was hard for me to drop everything at a moments notice for an audition or a gig. So, I began to train in the Pilates method and received several certifications before starting to work with a private clientele. Even during this phase of my career, I was always drawn to fashion and art and the melding of the two. My partner and I moved to Eastern Market in 2009 and decided to open our own store with a curated selection of designs in 2014. 

{SS}: When did you decide to open Orleans + Winder and what inspired you to start this business? 

{Erin}: My partner and I are both drawn to things that are unique and rare. We were inspired to open Orleans + Winder to create a platform for slow fashion and design in Detroit because there were certain designers that we admired who had no representation here yet. They are people who create by hand or small batch production and source their materials within their own locals. Our selection is very close to our hearts and our designers are very talented and genuine people. 

{SS}: Can you share with us any lessons learned or business advice you have gained throughout your journey of being a business owner? 

{Erin}: There is more work involved than you can imagine, but it is so rewarding. If you have a passion for it, dive in and do it! I am still learning everyday, it's constantly evolving. 

{SS}: What do you love about your job?

{Erin}: I love working with our incredible designers and artisans, and I love all of the people that I get to meet who come into the store. Helping people find a special piece and showing them a new way to dress is so exciting. 

{SS}: Who inspires you in the Fashion/Design world?

{Erin}: I have always been drawn to the avant garde, designers such as Alexander McQueen, Rei Kawakubo, all of the Antwerp six, are who inspire my direction. 

{SS}: Your secret to work/life balance?

{Erin}: I am a huge list maker! I write everything down in my little moleskin notebook. I also make sure to have lots of quality family time. It keeps me grounded. 

{SS}: What are your current favorite product(s) in store?

{Erin}: I have a particular dress created by our French designer Marc le Bihan made of grey silk with the most incredible pleating. That is what I am coveting right now.

{SS}: Are there any new products or lines that you will be carrying that you are excited about?

{Erin}: I just came across a line based in Bali called Monarc1 and I fell madly in love with it! We will be carrying it for FW16. Every piece is made by hand, in Bali, and they create the most incredible hand cut leather vests that look laser cut, but are not. The craftsmanship and cuts are top notch. 

{SS}: In regards to your personal style, do you have a signature accessory?

{Erin}: I wear my Amy Glenn slight point ring everyday without fail. 

{SS}: A few items in your "Styleshack" A.K.A closet that you can't live without?

{Erin}: My black Guidi ankle boots, Marc le Bihan blazer, and my Shaina Mote wool coat. 

{SS}: Who inspires your style? Favorite Style Icon?

{Erin}: I like to think I create my own style, but I am inspired by Patti Smith, Ann Demeulemeester, and everything in the 1920’s. 

{SS}: Style Archetype?


{SS}: What is the "2016 Spring Trend" you are most looking forward to?

{Erin}: I love long and flowing for spring and summer. Long skirts, shirts, dresses, etc. 

Shaina Mote Smithson Trench Coat Orleans + Winder, Black Slip Dress Shop Style 


{SS}: Favorite fashion, lifestyle, food or business blog?

{Erin}: I always love reading Garance Doré and Le Coveteur

{SS}: Favorite place to eat? (In your local neighborhood) 

{Erin}: La Rondinella.

{SS}: Favorite quote or words to live by?

{Erin}: As an ode to my theater roots: