March 30, 2021 4 min read
Women have plenty of accessories to jazz up any outfit. However, for men, the number of accessories is limited, yet they are just as important. The classic tie is a perfect example of an accessory that can add class and elegance to any outfit.
When worn by men or women, the classic tie adds a more formal and polished look to your outfit. This is why most formal meetings, be it a wedding celebration, a job interview, or a professional setting such as the office, require a tie.
Men generally have a limited color palette when it comes to shirts and suits, but with a tie, the sky is the limit. From solid ties in any color of the rainbow to a plain monochromatic one, or even one with a combination of patterns and colors, there are plenty of designs to choose from.
Neckties also vary in width, from the skinny tie to the wider ones. Skinny ties generally look best on tall or thin men, but ultimately the choice is up to you! This is where men can take creative liberties, even when they have to dress formally. Maybe you want to wear a forest green bowtie or a polka dot patterned tie, the choice is yours. The best tie for you is the one that makes you feel the best once you put it on.
Most ties come in the same basic shape, with a wider end, called the blade, and a thinner end called the tail. Neckties usually have a pointed tip at the end of the blade, giving the tie its classic look. Mid-way along the length of the tie is the neck of the tie, which is what will form the foundation for our tie knot.
Wearing a tie is all about tying it correctly. Perfecting the knot, length, and making sure that it is completely centered can be an art. It’s easy to wear a tie in a matter of seconds if you know what you are doing. Knowing the right technique and practice can make a huge difference in how well your outfit comes together.
Here is a simple step-by-step process of tying a tie correctly. Though there are multiple ways, learning how to tie a Full-Windsor knot is one of the most classic ways to get started. We’ve included a visual guide at the end of the instructions that you can follow as well.
Place the tie around your neck, so that each end falls from either side. Make the wide end hang down a little further than the tail (skinny end). Do not balance the two sides perfectly, otherwise, the wide end will be too short once the knot is tied, and you’ll have to start over.
Note: When practicing your tie knots, it’s best to be consistent with which side of your body you hang each side on. This will make it easier to tie the knot consistently each time.
Bring the wide end over the tail so that the two ends criss-cross. It’s like creating an X, but ensure that the tail is relatively straight. It helps to keep tension on the tail by pulling on it gently to keep it straight. This will add more structure to the final knot.
Take the wide end and bring it up from underneath the tail, and through the space between your collar and where both ends cross. Loop this end around the neck of the tie, to the left of the X, so that it is back in front.
Bring the wide end behind the tail, up in front of the neck, and back down through the collar. This will form a loop behind where the knot is forming.
Finally, bring the wide end over the front of the knot, forming a loop. Continue by bringing the wide end of the tie back up through the neck, and down through this loop, completing your Full-Windsor knot.
Tighten your tie knot by pulling the wide end down in front. As you do this, you can tug on either side of the knot, from underneath, to adjust its appearance. You can tighten the knot around your collar by holding the tail in one hand, and then by using your thumb and index finger to slide the knot upward.
Photo by Real Men Real Style
If the front of your tie is too short or too long, then you’ll need to start your knot over again. The final length of the tie will be determined by how much of the wider end of the tie is left remaining once the knot is tied. The longer the thick end of the tie is compared to the tail, the longer the final result will be. Starting with a longer blade, and a shorter tail, will leave more of the wide end in front, and vice-versa.
Tying a tie is a necessary skill that everyone should learn. Once you learn this basic tie tying technique, you can move onto more interesting and challenging types of knots. Be sure to practice to get the technique just right. Tying a tie knot is a basic skill that every modern man should learn, and which takes practice and time to master.
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