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.

Harmonize colors
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.

Harmonize patterns
Don’t go overboard with patterns. You should only wear one piece with a pattern and keep the rest of your outfit neutral.

Harmonize fabrics
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.