THE TIES TO THE SOUTH STORY
It took us a while to docum ent the story of our business because quite frankly, at Ties To The South we spend most of our time thinking about how good you are going to look sporting your new neckwear! But since you took the time to come see how we started, please... carry on.
Our story officially started in the summer of 2012 in Houston, Texas, but our ties to the state started long before that. Our founder Judy moved to Houston in 1988 after being raised in Illinois where her mother owned a sewing studio. Grandma was known to bestow gifts of quilts, throws and pillowcases, every piece stitched together by hand. Each one of those items drape the rooms of the house and haven't aged a year. For that reason, you will never receive a bow-tie from Ties to The South that isn't hand made in America. Quality is the most important aspect of our business and Grandma wouldn't have it otherwise.
Over the past 8 years, the sons began to leave Houston for college. Growing up in Texas, you would think they were destined for College Station, Lubbock or Austin, but that was not the case. One ended up at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, another at Vanderbilt in Nashville, and the third at the University of Mississippi in Oxford.
High school baseball, football and other weekend activities faded and quickly turned to SEC Football and all of the accompanying southern traditions. Friday night around the RV campfire, Saturday morning walks through the Grove, barbecues in Centennial park, and Saturday nights under the lights in Death Valley. It didn't stop there... Tuscaloosa, Auburn, Athens, College Station, Knoxville, Gainesville and every other southern town and school made the list of places to see and be seen.
This was a new culture, and when you immerse yourself in it, you have to dress the part. Proper on the outside, party on the inside. Sophisticated but sultry. Bold but befitting. Economical but enticing. Yeah, that was the hard part.
How can you be economical but still get the quality you deserve? We searched store after store only to find that most high end retailers sold mass produced, overpriced designs that were made in China. What we found, is that in today's market, you can't be economical and get the high quality products you deserve. At least not until we started Ties To The South! In the fall of 2012, custom, hand picked fabrics were purchased and bow ties were churned out one after the other for college friends, family and co-workers. It was a hobby at this point, but people loved the products. We had scrapped the fancy name, high price, made-in-China model of the retailers. We wanted affordable, high quality and unique. Jordy and Claire, 2 of the co-founders, decided to take the company to the next level, incorporating the business, opening an office at the Louisiana State University Incubator program, attending networking events, seminars, panel discussions and taking every opportunity possible to get the word out. Things were moving fast until we got a phone call. Cancer.
That is one word no one wants to hear, and it paralyzes you from the inside out. The business was an afterthought to everyone, but not to our founder. It was her way to keep up with the daily routine, but more than that, to make the people she loved happy. Support was tremendous. Friends, family, the community, church groups, people we didn't know, were still invested in the well being of others. After a few long months, she was in remission and everyone had grown from the experience. It was at that point in time Ties to The South changed from a hobby, to a business that meant something to all of us.
No matter what you encounter, where you go or who you meet, you will never forget where home is. That is your tie to the south. Help us start a new tradition. We are happy you are here.