Do you want to look stylish, fashionable and yet elegant and appropriate? Then have a collection of ties! There are 5 rules when it comes to your tie…
Man’s wardrobe must look boring in comparison with a closet of a woman. In a way men are limited to suits, shirts and ties which make their everyday business look pretty boring. Yet, some men crave to stand out of the crowd of look-alike executives and want to add a personal twist to the business outfit. Experiments may be fun, but might also lead to disasters.
5 rules to match a tie
The rules for a good match of the suit, shirt and ties are simple:
1. The more formal the occasion, the more conservative the outfit
For formal occasions decide for a white shirt and plain, one color tie. The more authority you want to command the less fancy your clothing should be. That’s the reason for a classic, elegant look – no pattern, high contrast, two color formal wear.
For a more relaxed look or informal business meeting opt for the pastel color shirt (ivory, blue or pink) with colorful tie that compliments the color of the shirt or suit. If in any doubt, choose a ‘save option’ – white shirt. It goes well with any suit and tie and always looks appropriate.
2. The wider the collar – the bigger the knot
Choose the tie that works best with shirt collar. If the collar is wide spread, compliment it with a thick full knot or a single knot of a thick woollen tie. If the collar wings are narrow, choose a thinner fabric tie like silk and go for smaller knot.
3. The tie should be darker than a shirt
Black shirt and white tie? This surely will make you memorable but not necessarily in the right way. For a classic business look always choose a light color shirt and dark, contrasting or matching tie. If you like monochromatic look, then go for a plain tie a shade darker than the color of the shirt.
4. The stripes on the shirt and tie need to oppose each other
If you want to play with stripes please remember this rule. The wider the stripes on one item, the narrower the should be on the other. This will ensure appropriate balance and the final effect will be elegant and not overwhelming.
5. Tie width should match the width of the suit lapels
This is all about proportion… If you want to wear skinny tie, you need to wear it with a suit jacket with narrow lapels. Wider lapels require a wider tie.
I always encourage my clients to experiment. Once you gain the confidence to coordinate your wardrobe according to the rules, you may want to break them from time to time, as long as the occasion is appropriate for a bit of a show off. Whatever you do please remember that the final look should always enhance your personal style and elevate your image.
Many men despise wearing ties. They don’t wear a tie because they want to; they wear a tie because they feel like they have to. They wear them out of a sense of obligation and only feel like themselves once the tie is off.
Men who do not like wearing ties should consider that there are professional and elegant alternatives like the ascot. An ascot is a sash or scarf and it is named after the horseracing track Ascot Heath in England, where these scarves became popular in the19th century.
An ascot can be worn with either a formal suit or a more casual blazer. During the day, it should be tied up in the collar. The top button does not have to be closed. At more formal occasions, the collar should be buttoned all the way and the ascot should be tied and clipped with a pin. A vest completes this look. It can be worn with tailcoats, tuxedos, or frockcoats. An ascot should be a solid color like white, silver, or burgundy for formal occasions or patterned for casual look.
The ascot is an old style that is just starting to return. It is a perfect substitute for a tie and can match any shirt of jacket. A man who wears an ascot is elegant and unique and stands out among other men who wear ties. Ascots convey individualism, good taste, and aesthetic sense.
When choosing a tie, you need to consider both the occasion and the rest of your outfit. For business meetings, interviews, and work, you should avoid anything too wild and choose a classic tie with just a few colors. When the occasion is less formal, you can choose a more colorful or patterned tie that matches your outfit.
Ties come as wide as 5 inches, but the standard width these days is 3 to 3.5 inches (8-8.5cm). A general rule for tie width is to make the tie proportionate to the width of your jackets lapel.
Matching a tie with a shirt and jacket can be a real challenge. People who have good taste and are trendy can use ties to show off, but others who are not as confident can follow these guidelines to choose ties.
Choose a dominant color for your outfit and reuse it on different things. You could wear a navy blue jacket with a light blue shirt, and then choose a yellow tie with a navy blue pattern. The varied but consistent colors make your outfit look more professional. Generally, your tie should be darker than your shirt.
Don’t go overboard with patterns. You should only wear one piece with a pattern and keep the rest of your outfit neutral.
Don’t wear your summer linen tie with a heavy wool suite. If you are wearing a heavier fabric suit, then wear a heavier weight tie. The same goes for lighter weight outfits.
Coordinate with a handkerchief
A handkerchief can be placed in the breast pocket. It should match the rest of your outfit, but it should not be the same material as your tie.
Choose the right knot
Depending on the collar of your jacket and the thickness of your tie, there are different knots to choose from.
When you store ties, lie them flat instead of leaving them tied. When tied, the tie should reach just to your belt. If it is too long or too short it will make your body seem out of proportion.
There are many different knots you can try:
- – Kent: This is a straight, asymmetrical knot used for small collars. It works best for thick ties and wider ties.
- – Four in hand (also called the straight knot or knot in four): This knot is the most general and can be used on any thickness of tie and with an average sized collar.
- – Windsor: This is a symmetrical knot that is more difficult to tie but looks more elegant. It is best with broad collars and thin ties. A thick tie will make the knot look too big.
- – Half-Windsor: This is a symmetrical knot that is best with broad collars and thin ties. It is slightly less casual than the full Windsor knot.