For Tampa woman, big business in big bracelets

- They are the colorful bracelets, rings, and earrings with precious stones taking over department stores and boutiques nationwide.  The jewelry line is called Bourbon and Bowties.

"We've been in every single Nordstrom's store, Bloomingdale's, we've had over 3,500 stores carry us throughout the U.S.,” said Carley Ochs, the creative mind behind the popular bangles.  

Ochs says she named the line after her two favorite things. She got the idea after living abroad in China.

"I wanted to bring something home for my family a present for them so I brought some loose stones that I found," said Ochs.

She connected those stones to wire to make bracelets and a business was born. She started selling them at a rapid pace in Tampa and caught the attention of national retailers.

"Our community is the reason that we took off nationally with Nordstrom also Bloomingdale's as well,” she continued. 

Ochs keeps her business Tampa-based and she doesn't use a big factory. She contracts local men and women to help her put the jewelry together.

"They pick up materials and they assemble them in the comfort of their own homes," said Ochs.

"I thought it was an awesome opportunity,” said one of those helpers, Danielle Mazur.  “I was already staying at home with my kids kind of looking for something fun to do on the side and didn't realize it would turn into a job for the last five years.”

Now that her business has become a community jewel, Ochs strives to support local charities as well.

"I just think it's important to keep money in Tampa Bay,” she offered. "It's a blessing. I just think that every day, I'm honored to do what I do.”

For more information about Bourbon and Bowties, visit:

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