Bang-Up Betty—the hand-stamped jewelry manufacturer led by Little Rock entrepreneur Stacey Bowers—has been known for its snarky, funny, outspoken, feminist jewelry since its inception in 2013. Now, Bowers is releasing new collections that reflect more of her own interests, incorporating things like history, Greek mythology and art.
Her most recent collection, the “Gallery Collection,” came out in March, and is inspired by art history. Bowers said this is one of her favorite collections she has done.
“It’s really special to me, partly because I dedicated it to my late brother, and one of the pieces in it is inspired by a Van Gogh painting that he had a tattoo of,” she said.
According to Bowers’ website, the “Gallery Collection” is jewelry inspired by art history, long walks in monumental museums and the little-told stories of the images and symbols that shape our view of the past and present.
“It by no means even begins to encompass the vast history of art, which spans every inhabited place great or small across the globe and includes every culture on our diverse planet,” the website said. “Consider it more like a room—a small gallery—wherein I’ve hung a handful of meaningful works to contemplate and paid homage to them with my own method of interpretive reproduction.”
Prior to this collection, Bowers released the “Siren Collection,” inspired by some of her favorite Greek mythology.
“This is the most meaningful collection of handmade jewelry I’ve ever designed, and I hope it speaks to your soul,” she wrote on her website. “Maybe you’ll see yourself reflected in the glimmering bronze, or maybe in the stories each piece has to tell.”
Bowers began releasing these larger conceptual collections within the past few years. Before that, there were smaller releases of hand-stamped jewelry.
“Most of what I do is either hand-stamped jewelry, or cast bronze and sterling silver jewelry,” she said. “So I do everything from custom bracelets that have funny phrases on them, or have sentimental things, to these cast bronze figural sculpture-type pieces.”
She is currently working on a late summer, early fall collection.
“I hesitate to give a release time because every time I do it’ll get pushed inevitably,” Bowers said, laughing.
In addition to collections, she said she’s always releasing new “one off” things throughout the year. A popular piece she released last year commemorated the fly landing on Vice President Mike Pence’s head during the Vice Presidential Debate. With a fly charm attached to a surface that reads “I’m speaking,” Bowers said the piece blew up overnight.
As her inventory continues to grow, it will see a new home by the end of summer in Bowers’ new shop that will be located in the Argenta neighborhood of North Little Rock.
“I’m a person who, really I just love jewelry with all of my heart, and I hope that shows through my jewelry, and for people who don’t just love to wear decorative, pretty things, it’s for people who like things that have stories and are meaningful, and put a smile on their faces,” Bowers said.