Here in Seattle, we like to keep things casual. It can be hard for designers to thrive here when we’re so happy with our beards and flannels, wary to stray too far away from the staples of Seattle fashion.
Jay Jones changes this with an edgy twist on a classic accessory. When I first heard the concept of his street-friendly bowties, I wasn’t sure how it would work. Bowties don’t generally scream “street style.” Being the true visionary that he is, Jay makes it work. Totally and completely.
After graduating from a fine arts high school in Mississippi, Jay joined the army as a health care worker. Four years later, he went back to pursuing his art, and in November of 2014, he started selling his one of a kind, hand-made pieces, called Stingy Styles Bow Ties.
Originally starting in San Francisco, I asked Jay why he wanted to move his business to Seattle. Citing his family as “first and foremost,” Jay explains that as a city fast on the rise, Seattle has a lot to offer. Having done fashion work in New York and San Francisco, he found that it could be easy to get lost in the chaos. “There are so many designers,” he says. His goal is to work from the bottom-up, and grow his business with the ever-expanding Seattle fashion scene.
“Seattle definitely has a style of its own,” he says, smiling. The good thing about Seattle is it’s continued support and collaboration with local business owners and entrepreneurs. “It’s all about collaboration,” Jay says. “It’s the only way all of us can exist!”
As far as his extensively creative collections go, Jay claims he’s inspired by “everything you can see.” He loves to explore different mediums as an artist, including experimenting with different materials (everything from cotton to velvet) and popping patterns.
Jay connects each one of his bow tie designs to an emotion. Pointing to a mostly black and white floral patterned bow, with scattered bright orange and pink flowers, he says, “This one is called ‘Monday night’ because I made it on a Monday night before I went out. It just has that energy.”