Tie is a component of formal dressing which enhances a man’s formal dressing or professional appearance. However, most men don’t know how to knot their ties to match the style of their shirts. They use the same style for large collar shirts and small collar shirts, but that is a socially awkward way to dress. You might be wearing an expensive suit and still look awkward if your tie is not knotted properly.
Worse still, some men are of the view that they don’t need to know how to knot a tie since they can always find someone else to do it for them. The problem with people knotting your tie for you is that they seize the power of choice from you. You have to put on whatever style they knot for you since you don’t know how to do it yourself. This article is out to promote the “Do it yourself” mindset so that as a man you can be armed with choice and put on the right style when required.
Let us consider the six basic styles of knotting a tie and know when they should be used.
This is the most popular style because it is simple to tie. It goes well with almost every type of shirt collar and works well for most types of tie. It is especially suitable for tall men and men of medium height. The four-in-hand knot has a conical and elongated shape. It is narrow when tied with a lightweight fabric and wider when formed with thick material.
2. Oriental or Small Knot
This is the simplest way to knot a tie. As the name implies, it is a small knot. It gives a simple small casual look. Small knot is perfect with heavy fabrics and/or with close-cut collars. It is not suitable for long or wide-spaced collars. Oriental or small knot goes well for any event, especially for office wear.
The Windsor knot is named after the Duke of Windsor who popularised it. The finished knot is relatively large and is most suitable for wide-spaced collars. It is a complex style which has to fit exactly between the two ends of the collar while completely hiding the top button of the shirt.
The Half Windsor looks like the Full Windsor but it is not quite as big and it’s easier to tie. It is perfect for fabrics that are lightweight and comes out with a triangular knot that is well-suited to shirts that have classic or open collar.
This is also known as the Shelby knot. It is fairly wide but not as wide as Windsor. It can go with any dress shirt. It is perfect for wider ties made from light to medium fabrics.
This is similar to the Pratt knot with symmetrical, moderate sized knot. It is particularly useful for textured wool ties which may be thick or bulky.
You can get try out the types of knots highlighted in this piece by following visual guides online. A simple search will give you several resources on how to master the art of knotting a tie. You may consider starting at www.tieguide.com or www.totieatie.com.