PSU news by
Penn State's student blog

Topics

About

Penn State Students Create One Of A Kind Bow Tie Business

by: Abhar Shah

What started off as a way to keep his frat brothers from mocking him quickly turned into a successful business.

Carl Rowits, a Penn State junior, teamed up with his roommate Reg Goeke, also a junior at Penn State, and created a business that designs and produces bow ties.

The idea came to Rowits after he was ridiculed during a Beta Theta Pi initiation ceremony.

“I joined my frat freshman year and at the initiation ceremony I wore a clip-on bow tie with my jacket,” Rowits said. “As soon as I walked in the door everyone noticed that it was a clip on and everyone made fun of me.”

Rowits went home later that Christmas and told his mom that he wanted to get real bow ties. But after getting them, he realized they didn’t have any inner lining and all that of them were made in China.

“I thought to myself that I can definitely make bow ties for cheaper,” says Rowits. “I went to Jo-Ann Fabric and got a cotton fabric. We made a bow tie and I wore that to another jacket event. One of the guys loved the tie so much that he bought it off my neck for $50.”

After realizing that he could make decent money from this, the idea for selling bow ties was too good of an opportunity to pass up. Their website Homanbriar.com has been a success thus far, so one could say that Rowits wearing his clip-on tie at the initiation ceremony was a blessing in disguise.

“In hindsight, I’m glad he wore the clip-on tie,” Goeke said. “But regardless, we both knew that at some point in our lives we were going to end up starting something together.”

All the materials that go into their ties are made in America. According to Goeke, they want to get as much as they can from Pennsylvania businesses.

Besides bow ties, the duo wanted to expand their demographic and have started selling t-shirts as well.

“We ventured into shirts because girls tend not to buy bow ties or wear bow ties; even a lot of guys don’t wear bow ties,” Rowits said. “This year we’re going to team up with Woolrich and we’re going to try to buy wool from them to expand our products.”

The bow ties are on sale for around $40 to $50. Besides selling them to customers, Rowits and Goeke also sell ties in bulk to Harper’s Men Clothing Store.

Another new product that the tag team will release are THON headbands.

“This fall, our plan is to make THON headbands and sell them to different hospital gift shops,” Rowits said. “We support THON a lot, so all the proceeds from the headbands will go to THON. We’re proud to do something like that.”

Both Rowits and Goeke take pride in their work, so it’s not all about the money.

“All of our products are made by hand,” Goeke said. “We take great pride in in helping others. Our goal and message to everyone is that we’re two college kids that are focused on creating excellent products that benefit not just us but everyone around us.”

About the Author

StateCollege.com

Posts from our partner website StateCollege.com.

Comments

More by StateCollege.com

Herwig’s Austrian Bistro Sets Closing Date

Owner Bernd Brandstatter announced in March that restaurant would be closing between June and August, but the final day of business has been moved up.

Former Penn State Football Player Denies Burglary, Assault Accusations

Spats Cafe Collaboration With Allen Street Grill Set For Grand Opening

Athletics

North Dakota Interested In Playing Against Penn State Hockey In Nashville

North Dakota is working towards an agreement that will see its hockey team play against Penn State in Nashville during the 2020-21 season.

Former Cal Swimmer Says She Emailed Sandy Barbour About Sexual Harassment Claims

Max Sauve Commits To Penn State Hockey

Penn State Women’s Volleyball Releases 2018 Schedule

Penn State Hoops Alumnus Joonas Suotamo’s Journey To Becoming Chewbacca Featured On ESPN’s ‘E:60’

Student Life

Penn State Love Stories: A Chance Meeting On A Service Trip

When Abby Wilt went on a service trip to Nassau, Bahamas, she had no idea she’d meet the love of her life.

10 Questions With 2019 Class Gift Director Tom Beeby

Career Services To Launch Integrated Career Management & Recruiting Platform

Plans Submitted For New KFC In State College

Developers have submitted preliminary land development plans to build a new KFC restaurant at 1780 S. Atherton St. in State College.

State Theatre Recognized As A State College Historic Site

As it approaches the 80th anniversary of its opening, the State Theatre has been recognized as a State College historic site.

Penn State Love Stories: A Chance Meeting On A Service Trip

When Abby Wilt went on a service trip to Nassau, Bahamas, she had no idea she’d meet the love of her life.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

10 Questions With 2019 Class Gift Director Tom Beeby

Tom Beeby will serve as the 2019 Class Gift Executive Director.

Send this to a friend