Bow ties have come back into style in a big way! They are no longer relegated fringe outfits such as Bill Nye The Science Guy. Bow ties can also be more functional than a standard necktie as there a less a chance of it getting caught or stuck on something. In fact, this is how the bow tie was born – out of a need for neckwear that could be worn throughout an active day. By the end of the 19th century, bowties had become commonplace and were even an acceptable part of formalwear. This is still the case today. However, bow ties are no longer only associated with fancy coat tails and top hats, they’re now worn in the everyday workplace by those looking for a little extra self expression. So if you’re interested in standing out from your peers, give a bow tie a try!
Self Tie vs Pre Tied Bow Ties
Bowties have become so popular that you don’t even need to know how to tie one anymore. Tying a formal bowties is a dying artform and was one of the biggest barriers to wearing one since it was a very different skill than tying a traditional necktie. Given this difficulty and yet the desire to nonetheless wear this neckwear, pre tied bow ties were invented.
You no longer have to stand frustrated in front of the mirror trying to get the knot or the length of the bows even or symmetrical. The majority of novelty bowties come pre tied! The bow ties are permanently fixed into a perfectly tied bow tie and all you have to do is clip it to your neckband. There are a few different methods of clipping on a pre tied bow tie. Some clip directly to the band that goes around the neck under the collar while others clip directly to the collar itself.
While pre tied bow ties have helped the bow tie to gain popularity and has made it much easier for men to wear one at a moment’s notice, the purists will still tie their own bow tie. It’s a right of passage and you get major bragging rights for being able to tie one yourself. So here are the steps to take you out of the pre tied bow tie world and into the world of the gentleman who ties his own bow ties:
Steps to tie a bow tie:
1 – Drape the bow tie around your neck, face up. Adjust the sides of the tie so that the right side is shorter than the left side.
2- Cross the left side (the longer side) of the bow tie across the right side.
3- Bring the longer side (now on the right) under the shorter side and up through the loop close to the neck.
4- At the joint, which is created by the change in side of the material of the tie, fold the shorter side of the tie over in half creating one side of the “bow”. Then bring the longer side down over the top (this is the front of the knot).
5- Fold the joint of the longer side in half like you did previously to create another “bow”. Cross this bow behind the first bow you created, through the loop of the long side, and out the other side (thus tying the knot).
6- Pull both ends of the bow tightly, securing the knot and closing the center loop to hold the bow tie securely in place.
Tying a bow tie takes lots of practice. The goal is to get the bows even with each other, the same size, and for the ends to not stick out past the sides of the bows.