Bow Tie Fashion: A Statement of Confidence

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Today, we have Austin Baxter, a young entrepreneur who shares with us his unique concept of bow tie fashion. A Nashville-born 25 year-old, he is currently living in Texas and boasts a strong passion in inspiring and motivating people through his works of bow tie fashion design.


How I Got Into Bow Tie Fashion

I started getting into bow tie fashion after my freshmen years in Kentucky, when I decided to change my style. Prior to that, my style had always been just tee shirt and jeans. One day, I decided to wear bow ties to spice up my dressing, to be a little more unique.

I decided to call my aunt who knows how to sew, for guidance. Before you know it, we are making bow ties together, and have been doing so for three years.

When I first started applying bow tie fashion into my own style, people didn’t understand why I wear them everyday. For me, I just wanted to be different and standout from the crowd. I wanted to set a trend that no one was doing at the time. Of course, there are people that think wearing bow ties are strange. I just ignore them. I would just like to focus on what I think is right and make my bow tie fashion line successful.


Austin Baxter - It is all about Bow Tie Fashion

Austin Baxter – It is all about Bow Tie Fashion


Unique Bow Tie Fashion for the Unique Individual

The reason why I started getting into bow tie fashion is that it was always hard to find the perfect bow tie that stands out. My bow ties are made bigger because the classic bow ties are a little too small, especially for me. So, rather than wearing something that does not fit, I decided to take action and create something for myself, something a little more unique, different from the typical.

I usually design or source for a preferred pattern for my bow tie fashion line. My prints can’t really be found in stores. The pattern is able to stand out because of the bigger sized bow. This way, the pattern appears more prominent and distinctive.


Bow Tie Fashion Tips

Most people think bow tie fashion are only meant for formal occasions. But, for me, it can be worn for almost any occasion.

For men, I suggest one to go with a simple button up shirt. For example, you can have a simple shirt, long or short sleeve, and pair it up with a bow tie. Women can wear it along with a blouse, with or without a collar. It’s really flexible.

Recently, during my fashion show, I had my models dress up in slacks, cummerbund, and bow ties to attract the audience’s’ attention. That bow tie fashion show worked out very well.


Bow Tie Fashion for Everyone

I’m 5”10, and my average male models are around 5”6/10. One of my best male models is around 5”6. My female models are like 5”6/8 on average. My point is that I do not discriminate when it comes to sizes. I want to show that bow tie fashion is for everyone, despite their built.

I also have another tie called the lady tie – a longer, more square version of the necktie that you can wear as a necktie, neck bow, or hair tie. These varieties all show that no matter who you are and what you look like, there is a tie just for you.


Austin Baxter and his male and female models

Austin Baxter and his male and female models


African print inspired bow tie fashion

African print inspired bow tie fashion


African-inspired Bow Tie Fashion

When I moved to Houston and started getting into bow tie fashion, I crossed paths with people from different parts of Africa. They really work together as a community, and are very passionate when it comes to helping people.

At my first fashion show, which I did in Houston Texas,  I met a wonderful lady named Ms. Donna Lewi. She is the founder of A LA Carte Models and Designers Staffing Agency, and she has booked me for a lot of the fashion shows I have done in Houston. Through her, I get to meet Emeka Uchegbu and El Grande PapiRatzi at one of the fashion shows, both of whom are from Ghana.

Emeka Uchegbu and El Grande PapiRatzi have a company called I am Houston, which goes around and records videos to promote upcoming artists and models. We became good friends, and because of his influence I got interested in African patterns. He shared with me the different kinds of wax prints originating from different parts of Africa, like Shweshwe, kitenge, kangas, and others.

Previously, I had no chance to use such beautiful prints. But then I got selected by the African Fashion Week in Houston. I thought it was a great opportunity to work on African fabrics and showcase them.

My bow tie fashion symbolizes that it’s okay to be different. African prints make the whole bow tie style even more prominent due to the vibrant colour and beautiful designs they have to offer. People really love the African Print bow ties because they are different. The colors are so bright and they stand out like no other prints.

My recent project, an African print bow tie fashion shoot, featured Jay Sarkodie, from Nigeria. He works at the bank of a major grocery store. I spotted him and thought he has a cool look. I thought he would be a great fit for the African Fashion Week, not only because of his great looks but also because of his nationality.


Jay Sarkodie, from Nigeria

Jay Sarkodie, from Nigeria


A Family Inspiration

I grew up with both of my parents. But we were far from rich. Both my parents showed me the meaning of hard work and the importance of never giving up.

Then both of them became ill. I had to learn how to become a man earlier in life, to get out and work to help out my family. We struggle at times. My father, Austin Sr., had to work three jobs when my mother Lisa was sick.

Seeing my family struggle made me want to work hard to become successful one day, so that I can take care of my family. Their struggles have instilled in me the thought that I can do anything I want to. In return, I want to show the world that everyone can do whatever they want to, regardless of their background.

On September 28th, 2015, my mother, Lisa Baxter, passed away. It really hit me hard. But I know she is watching down on me, on us. And I will continue to work hard to make her proud.

To me, this is what my bow tie fashion business is all about – daring to be different, daring to dream, and knowing that whoever you are, wherever you’re from, you have the right to stand out in this world.


Hai Afrika would like to dedicate this piece of article to Austin’s mother who passed on recently.


Photo credits – Austin Baxter