A bow tie is one of the most versatile accessories available to a man. What’s really amazing about this is that it goes with just about everything. You can wear one with a formal attire, like in a black tie event, or go for just a casual look with a decent pair of denims and a pair of sneakers or trainers, over a shirt, tucked in.
The only rule that you must stand by, is to always wear a shirt with it of course, paying attention to the size of the collar with respect to the bow-tie: neither too small, nor too large. And the bigger you are, the bigger the bow-tie you’ll be able to pull off.
Bow-ties look equally good with v necks, cardigans, blazers etc. But watch out for the suit jackets that make you look like a busboy/ waiter; that could cause chaos.
If you’re too skeptical, go for something minimal to begin with, like tone on tone or the classical black bow-tie. Once you’ve got used to the accessory, you can play around with colors and patterns for something a bit more dynamic. Colorful bow-ties also look good with more simple looks, like this one with a simple batiste shirt.
You can get bow-ties costing between $10 and 100. The prices may of course, vary depending on the material chosen, the quality of its production, and whether it’s been personalized (if it’s made to measure). Specialized brands like Zara offer them at very reasonable prices (around $15-20). The aim isn’t to break the bank on an accessory that you’ll rarely wear.
What type of shirt collar should you wear a bow-tie with?
When buying a bow-tie, you need to keep in mind that you can’t wear them with just any type of collar. You will surely have shirts in your wardrobe with classic or button-down style collars.
Now, put your button-down and classic collars to one side; they are not suited to bow-ties either aesthetically or practically. It’s all about balance between the collar and the bow-tie.
Small Collar is one which you should have the most of in your wardrobe. It’s the collar you should wear to avoid any risk. It suits all sizes: small, normal, and large
Narrow collars are not so popular in men’s wardrobes these days, but they often go well with a slim bow-tie. Once you’ve got to grips with it, you can try out different sizes of bow-ties to create a broader effect with your neck. It’s a matter of taste.
The Club Collar, which is starting to become popular on men’s shirts, allows you to be a bit more original thanks to the rounded collar. You could go for a slim or normal size bow-tie so that don’t cover up the detail of the collar itself. The stylistic effect is the most important thing.
Wing Tip collars are worn with dinner suits. If you want to highlight your ultra-chic outfit and really look your best, choose a small or normal size bow-tie. Don’t be afraid to choose a patterned bow-tie for an original and bolder look; that goes well with it too!
Types of Knots
There are two types of knot:
Pre-assembled or pre-tied bow-ties: These are the most common since they are the easiest to use. This type of bow-tie is often at the low end of the market. Two clips allow you to fasten the bow-tie together.
Bow-ties that you have to tie yourself: They can be adjustable or have fixed neck sizes like your shirts. They are at the high-end of the market due to their authenticity.
In short, it’s a lot simpler to wear a bow-tie than you’d think: you can very well integrate it now and then into your outfits, whilst instantaneously sticking to your own style. All in all it’s a good accessory to blend in with the simplest of combinations in order to give it a genuine touch without making it too flamboyant.