How do you tie your menís neckwear? Scientists have discovered that there are more than 24,000 ways to tie a necktie, but most men stick to the same type of knot, depending on the occasion and the style of necktie. The most common (and easiest) style of tie knot is the four-in-hand knot, but Windsors and half-Windsors, while more difficult, are also quite popular.
Because there are so many possible ways to tie menís neckwear, it can be difficult to decide which style to use when. Believe it or not, the type of knot that you choose actually says quite a bit about your personal style, and there are certain conventions to follow when choosing a tie knot. Learning to tie a variety of styles, then, is only half the battle; itís also important to know when to use them.
The key to selecting a necktie knot comes down to the shape and spread of the shirt collar. When the wrong knot is selected, it can make the collar look either overly large or small, and the lines of the knot against the collar of the shirt will appear ďoff.Ē They may intersect at odd angles, or feel off-kilter in some way. Shirts with widespread collars (as in more than 90 degrees) look best with tie knotted in a larger, more triangular knot, while straight point collars are better paired with ties knotted in a more narrow style.
At the same time, the tie knot should be in proportion to the size of its wearer. In other words, taller and broader men should stick to knots that are wider, like the Full Windsor or the less common Balthus, Hanover, or Grantchester knots. Smaller knots, like the Four-In-Hand, Oriental, or Victoria, tend to look better on men of a smaller stature.
Keep in mind that some of the more complex knots, like the Full Windsor, require two wrappings, meaning that the tie itself needs to be longer. For taller men, this may mean purchasing a tie that is longer than average to ensure that the tie is the appropriate length once knotted.
While the spread of the collar is, perhaps, the most important consideration when it comes to knotting a necktie, the fabric and pattern can also influence which knot is best. British striped ties tend to look best in a Four-in-Hand knot, while thicker designer ties are often best suited in a larger Windsor knot. You may need to try knotting your tie in several different configurations to determine which looks best ó in most cases, when itís not right, youíll be able to spot the problem right away.
Of course, that requires learning a few different knots, which takes some practice. If you take the time to do so, youíll find that your menís neckwear looks more stylish ó and you look more pulled together ó than ever before.
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