Friday, November 5, 2010

All Tied Up A Man's Guide To Neckwear



Written By: Grant Harris - Owner & Chief Style Consultant - Image Granted, LLC

The necktie is one of the most important and most versatile accessories a man can wear. Whether dressing up or down there is a tie for every occasion. Here we discuss the history, construction, and variety of the tie.


The Irishman, poet, prisoner, and eccentric dresser; Oscar Wilde; is famously quoted, "A well-tied tie is the first serious step in life". The history of the necktie dates back to 1600's when the Croatians defeated the Turks in battle while wearing silk handkerchiefs around their necks. The French King Louis XIV adopted the style for his royal regiment and the adornment eventually adopted the English when it became standard for men to wear some type of cloth around his neck. Over the years the necktie has evolved it its modern day form.

Attaching the Self Loop
Men's Flair

Originally all neckwear was cut from silk. A quality handmade necktie will be cut "on the bias" or against the grain of the fabric which gives the tie its three dimensional shape. The three main parts of the tie are the front or blade where the tie ends in a point; the neck where the tie is knotted; and the tail which is the smaller of the two sides. Most ties will have an additional piece of fabric sewn across the tail with its label. Tailors call this the "self loop" which holds the tail in place behind the blade. Try the Tiedown for another option to keep your tie in place.
Seven Fold Tie

The quality and price of tie is determined by the number of folds in the fabric. The average tie is folded on itself three times. The infamous seven fold tie is folded on itself seven times before it is fully constructed. This technique improves the "hand" or the feel of the tie when held. The more the folds the more easily the tie will hold a knot and its shape over time. On the tail of the blade there is small "slip stitch" joining the two folds of fabric. Upon folding back these two pieces of fabric there will be a long loop of thread. The purpose of this thread is to allow the tie fabric to move with the wearer according to each knot tied over time and return to its original shape.

On the reverse side of the bottom of the blade one will find the stitching of the lining. This process called "tipping" can be done in the same color and pattern as the front of the blade or in a different color and fabric. A quality handmade tie with the proper maintenance will afford the gentleman several years of enjoyable wear.


Neckwear can be had in several varieties of fabrics, colors, knits, prints, widths and shapes. Look for these options.


These are the most commonly found fabrics of neckties:
1. Silk - Most widely used and accepted
2. Wool - Best option for fall and winter ensembles
3. Cashmere - Most luxurious and exspensive option
4. Cotton - Least exspensive and most versatile fabric
5. Linen - Light and durable. Best worn during summer months


Ties can be found in any and all colors in the color wheel but to build a foundation a gentleman only needs the following:

1. Blue - Standard for business professionals
2. Black - Standard for formal events
3. Brown - Good option for country and/or weekend wear
4. Red - Wear this color to make a bold statement
5. Yellow and/or green - Wear during warm months as a playful option

Knit or Print

A knit tie is woven from a fabric such as silk or cashmere and has the design or graphic sewn into it. A printed tie has the design or graphic printed on the fabric itself and is not sewn in. A gentleman should have both in his wardrobe.

Silk Woven Knit Tie

Silk Printed Tie
Length, Width, and Shapes

Most ties come in length up to 58 inches, but extra long ties are available for men who are above average height. Tie width seems to change from generation to generation. From wide in the 70's, to skinny in the 80's, to standard in the 90's. Today ties have seen a migration back to the slim variety among younger professionals. However, the standard width accepted in most environments is 3 and 1/4 inches at its widest point. Most skinny ties will measure 2 and 1/2 inches at the widest point. Most ties worn in a professional environment will end with a pointed blade. However, many ties end a flat bottom. This is seen mostly on silk knit ties and is reserved for a casual environment.

Whether blue collar or professional, the necktie is an indispensible piece of any man's wardrobe and should be chosen with care, tied with dignity, and worn with ease (even when you don't have to). Stay tuned for our next segment on neckties where will discuss which knots to wear and how to wear them.

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Written By:
Grant Harris
Owner & Chief Style Consultant
Image Granted, LLC

"Dressing Men for the Life They Want"

Grant Harris, MBA
Phone - 703.554.9184
Email -
Blog - Image Granted Blog
Linked In - - Grant Harris
Face Book -  Image Granted

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How A Man Should Think About Dressing

Daniel Craig 007 named Britains best dressed man
Dressing Well: A Simple Guys Dos and Don'ts

I found this great article on Googles Knol - A Knowledge Base about how a man should think about dressing. Being fashion conscience is for men too! - Jeffrey Hunter

Posted by Anonymous

Being fashionable is not only for females. A solid know how of style is something that guys ought not easily ignore. Having an excellent style understanding will definitely be advantageous a man eventually.

Fashion is not only for women. A sound understanding of style is something that men should not easily brushed aside. Having an excellent fashion understanding will definitely reward a man more than once in his lifetime. Moreover, it will award him an edge over other guys. In fact, knowing even the basics of men's style is already a man's weapon as he can use it immediately for his advantage.

Though fashion trends is always changing, a guy must observe dress etiquette's - not only what looks pleasing on you, but also what is good for the occasion. Fashion rules is useful in many parts of a guy's life. Whenever you need to dress up for an occasion, be it an interview or a date, you'll find a good fashion knowledge very useful. Also, if you're the more you practice sound dress etiquette, it's less likely you'll commit fashion inappropriateness.

Sometimes go conventional is the way it goes, where moving away from the norm is not the best way to go. Getting under dressed or overdressed for an occasion is not good either, so be observant especially if a specific dress code is required. It does not matter what signature brands you are wearing, it seldom is sufficient to make up for this major error. Anyway, nobody will bother to check out what brand you're wearing, if you are dressing inappropriately in the first place.

There are broad rules in fashion that you should observe. Understand what is appropriate, and what is standard. Various events in life may require various dress codes also.

For illustration, formal occasions require formal attire. For example are weddings, balls, dances, dinners, formal parties, etc. White tie events are the most formal. It is a must to adhere to the dress code required to avoid fashion disasters. For black tie events, which are very frequent, men's formal attire is made up of a black tuxedo with trousers, white dress shirt with tuxedo front, black bow tie, cummerbund, black socks and black, glossy, leather shoes. Black tie occasions may have changes occasionally, hedging on the dress code stated. For instance, you can wear colored shirts instead of white.

The trustworthy dark colored suit with tie is the standard for professional attire that you wear to the official or business events. For this one, there is more flexibility to choose whats appropriate - like the color you would put on today or which tie will go with that shirt. You can put on multiple color for your shirt and there are various designs of neck ties too. There are solid colored ties, and patterned ties. You can also test out various colors and dominant designs.

Finally, casual wear normally includes shirts, Bermudas, and jeans. It is noteworthy that your select typically hinges on where you're going. Are you going for a stroll in the mall, or night-out, or on a big game? You can also wear hats or caps, but knowing when to remove them is equally important. For instance, when going into a mall or establishment. It's proper etiquette to remove your head gear when indoors. Finally for foot wear, there are an assortment types of casual shoes to select from. A nice fine leather jacket also adds an edge to the laid back attire. A basic yet sharp Italian leather wallet is also perfect for all night outs. You can also wear flip flops in some occasions.

Read more on Google KNOLL A Knowledge Base Dressing Well A Simple Guys Dos And Don´ts
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Wooden Hangers That Make a Difference

The Rolls Royce Of Clothes Hangers - Kirby Allison's Hanger Project

If you like your clothes - especially your dress shirts, and suits then you'll like this article. Everyone that I know hates those clumsy metal clothe hangers. Not only do they get all tangled up, the do not conform to the nature shape of a mans shoulders so the shirts that hang on them are not hanging with any correct shape. Additionally the sharp and acute way the fabric of the shirt or God forbide, a suit drapes a metal hanger actually ruins shirts and will create stress and wear on the fabric. This damage caused by metal hangers is actually called dimpling and the result will be collapsed shoulders.

The plastic hanger came along about 20 years ago as a solution to the horrible metal clothes hanger but even those cause un-natural stress and wear similar to the metal hangers and as well compromise garment integrity. It is not just shirts but slacks also are ruined by plastic and metal hangers as un-natural fabric stress causes damage like trouser creasing. They do not get all tangles up like those but they have no alternative uses like using them to break into your car if you lock the keys in it or other household uses that were never meant for a clothes hanger.   wooden clothes hangers at

Now the really great way to treat your dress shirts is to hang them on wooden clothes hangers that are shaped like a mans shoulders and actually keep the shirt's form correct. Not un-natural stress is created on the fabric and if the shirts are hung correctly and not amongst too many that cause crowding a wrinkle free shirt can be selected and work without any ironing. The solution is wooden hangers that are crafted with thorough collaboration with clothing - apparel experts, tailors and fashion designers. These luxury clothes hangers are designed to protect and extend the life of your wardrobe by providing superior support and a customized fit. The wooden hangers that we are talking about are constructed from USA Maple Wood. They are none other than the luxury wooden clothes hanger made by Kirby Allison's Hanger Project and you can find them right here Wooden Clothes Hangers That Make A Difference

A really great article with alot of information
More info here on Knol a Unit of Knowledge

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