The donning of a boy’s first tie is considered a rite of passage, when a boy becomes a man. When you’re young it’s something you are forced to wear to horrendous family reunions and baptisms. As time passes they stop symbolizing a noose on childhood freedom and instead become a symbol of importance and prestige. A tie completes a beautiful suit or even dresses up a simple plaid shirt and leather jacket. Depending on the colour and shape, it can express individual style and creativity and says something about the man wearing it. While picking a tie may seem like an easy or mundane task but there are some simple steps every man should follow to make sure he looks his best.
There is much debate about how wide your tie should be.Some men argue in favour of the more modern skinny tie and some prefer the wider model. As a general rule, ties should be about 2-3.75 inches at their widest point. This is the best width to balance out most men. It should be in proportion to your body where larger men should aim for ties that are 3.25-3.75 inches in width, and smaller men should aim for ties between 2-3 inches. Your tie should also coincide with the lapels of the jacket you are wearing.
Wide lapels equal a wider tie, thinner lapels equal a thinner tie (pretty simple stuff).
While width is important, the length of the tie is also crucial. Too long or too short and you’ll look a little silly. Standard ties should be approximately 58 inches. Now this may vary depending on your height so try and choose a tie that hits the buckle of your belt or your waistband at its widest point.
Colours & Patterns
Ties don’t need to be limited to a day at the office, or your family Christmas party. They can used to dress up a pair of jeans and white bottom up shirt. Ties are a excellent way to put some creativity into your outfit. We touched on it in our last blog, but patterns and bright colours add interest and draw attention to an outfit, and are a must-have for Spring. When it comes to patterns in a tie don’t be afraid to get creative. Try bold colours and complex patterns that will add interest to your outfit. Keep in mind too much colour can overwhelm your look and take you from classy to clown in a second.
A simple rule to follow for wearing bold ties:
When wearing a neutral tie go for a bold shirt or jacket colour
When wearing a bright or patterned tie stick to a neutral shirt or jacket
If your feeling really adventurous try mixing colours (the colour wheel is a great way to see what colours work well together) and even patterns (but don’t get too crazy)
Knots There are many tie knots to choose from, some simple and some very complex. When mastered every knot can make an outfit look polished and complete. Lets stator with some of the basics:
1.The Windsor also known as the “double Windsor” is the most traditional knot
2. The Half Windsor has the elegance of windsor with half the effort
3. Four-in-hand is the perfect knot for a dressed down look
4. Shelby/Pratt knot has a looser look and is not as large as the windsor knot. Looks good with any outfit.
Mastered these already? Try something more complicated such as the Eldredge tie knot and the Trinity knot. These knots look best in a bold colour such as a deep purple or canary yellow to draw attention to their intricacies.
To minimize wrinkling in your tie try and avoid wearing the same tie 2 days in a row however over time sometimes it becomes difficult if not impossible to avoid wrinkling all together. When this does happen steaming is the best way to carefully get wrinkles out. Unfortunately not all of us have steamers, try hanging your tie in the bathroom while you are taking a shower.
Ties don’t have to be just another piece of a suit. Try experimenting with different widths and knots and watch as it transforms your outfit. If your looking for a bold coloured or printed tie then stop by Jerome’s Menswear on 2480 Yonge St. for a great selection of top quality ties.