Essential Guy Gear: The Tie

Posted in Fashion by Brian Ta

The best accessory for a man when dressing formally, or even just to go out is just a simple tie. Ties might seem like just a small article of clothing and some might even think it’s a waste of fabric. The tie can also feel restraining but it can also give you a huge burst of confidence knowing how sharp you look with one on. Wearing the right tie almost instantly puts you ahead of everyone around you, especially during a job interview. There are all kinds of ties and the perfect one can really set off the entire outfit. But how do you pick the right one?

Here are some simple tips to pick and wear the right tie.

  1. A tie is supposed to bring all the colors of the outfit together. The tie should work with the rest of your outfit, not stick out like a sore thumb. Usually they match the suit or the shirt.
  2. For a classy look, a slim tie can really set it off, but there are limits to how skinny the tie can be. 2 to 2.5 inches is your best bet.
  3. There may be tons of ways to tie a tie but you have to find one that works best for you. (The four-in-hand technique is really simple yet very elegant)
  4. Solid colors work the best with a striped shirt and vice versa (stay away from cartoons, its pretty goofy)
  5. The tie should hang up to the beltline, not above or below.
  6. A tie bar is useful in many ways, try one sometime but make sure the bar isn’t longer than your tie. The tie bar should be clipped between the 3rd and 4th button of your shirt, not too high and not too low.
  7. Try matching your ties to the types of fabric of your suit.

The outfits that Neal Caffrey (played by Matt Bomer) from the hit TV show, “White Collar”, wears are a perfect example.  Here are just some examples…

Here he is wearing a simple light blue shirt with stripes running own vertically. The tie he chose was a navy blue club tie.

Here he is wearing two different patterns on his tie and shirt. This is okay as long as the patterns do not clash. Notice how the pattern on the tie is slanted at a certain angle while the pattern on his shirt and jacket are vertical.

Here is a classic example, a solid shirt with a striped tie. Notice how he is wearing the tie bar as well.

Now that you have picked your tie, you should try one these methods of tying it. Here is a diagram taken from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology database.

 Now that you have all the essential knowledge about a tie, you should go experiment with them. Mix and match and find a style that suits yourself. Remember, ties are very good conversation starters. Most people you talk to will compliment your tie first. Good luck out there gentlemen, and always stay classy.




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