All posts in Ties

For the Love of Ties


I can’t get enough of ties. I can spend hours online looking through page after page of regimentals, foulards, and ancient madders. I find the colors, patterns, and textures intoxicating. They are the only item that I continue to thrift for because of the high ROI. They are how I express myself. Long live the tie.
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Neats and BlazerThursday TieDiamond Point Bow tieTie (2)029Blackwatch TieNeats and Tweedtumblr_nu2rhnwuY01ttpazyo1_1280Duck Tietumblr_nqkazdVSdJ1ttpazyo1_1280tumblr_ntnu6cfFy11ttpazyo1_1280tumblr_nrchj7ty9y1ttpazyo1_1280


The Old Knit Tie

Old College ties

Knit ties are a great choice for those that want a casual looking tie. Cotton knits are especially casual. Silk knits are also casual, but they are a notch dressier than cotton. Knit ties are easy enough to source in solid colors and stripes pop up here and there. They also won’t break the bank. I have wanted a striped knit tie for a while now, but have yet to find one that speaks to me.
Knit tie #1

This is where Old College Ties comes into the picture. Old College Ties got their start back in 2011 making up crew ties for Groton School. Since then Old College Ties has helped to revive the rowing tradition of crew ties among a number of schools. You can read more about their history here (Old College Ties).
Knit Tie # 3

One of the coolest features of the site is the tie widget (Thanks for the tip Gamm68!). It allows you to make up ties virtually experimenting with colors and stripes. As you can see from the images above I had no trouble whipping up a few ties that I was ready to purchase.

Knit Tie #4

Old College Tie will make up custom ties for your team, club, or event. The minimum order is 20 at $30 per tie which I found to be quite reasonable. Now what club to join…

Striped Shirt & Striped Tie

Ties2 Big

I often hear (or read) that you should not wear striped ties with striped shirts. I don’t know the origin of this “rule.” It may not even be a rule at all, but a tip to keep sartorial novices such as myself to stay away from pattern matching. What I do know is that wearing striped ties with striped shirts is one of my favorite things.
TodayPulling off a striped tie with a striped shirt relies on the same principle as any pattern on pattern matching. It is all about scale. It is also not complicated, at least in theory. The two patterns simply have to have enough difference in their scale to work. In general, it tends to work best when the shirt pattern is smaller than the tie’s pattern, but I am sure that there are exceptions to this.

Stripe tie & shirtClose up
Traditionally I wear a blue university striped OCBD with a striped tie. Like I said, it is one of my favorite looks. However, using different kinds of striped shirts opens up endless possibilities. I am slowly working on adding a new stripe type or color to my closet (Common types of shirt stripes). I recently purchased a pinpoint shirt with red stripes from Brooks Brothers primarily to wear with one tie in particular (see the combo here!), but I know that I will find many more to wear with it through experimentation.
Stripes on Stripess
Green Rep tie & Uni StripeI like rules. They provide structure and guidance. Rules can help you to avoid things that should be avoided without you having to fully understand why. On the flip side, once you better understand the reason for the rule you may be able to apply it as necessary instead of blindly following it. For those of you who don’t do stripes on stripes I hope this post encourages you to give it a go.

The Last Days of Tweed and More: Wear it While You Can


Even though we are still experiencing temperatures in the single digits I know that warmer is weather is inevitable. Don’t get me wrong. I am more than ready to hang up my duffle coat, but I also know that the changing weather comes at a price. Part of that price is that our tweed wearing days are numbered. Tweed Sport Coat and Shetland SweaterCords for the cold In the top picture I am wearing a sport coat over a Shetland sweater sans tie which I reserve for very cold days. In the picture below I opted for tan cords over chinos, because there is never a shortage of opportunities to wear chinos, but wide-wale cords are a different story.

Tweed is not the only thing that goes when warm weather strikes. We will lose our wool socks, wool ties, and wool overcoats. While I have been strategically working each of my tweed sport coats into the mix, I have also been relying heavily upon corduroys, and even my tie selections have been influenced by the limited cold weather days before spring. Today's Ties OptionsTweed and Foulard TieIn the third picture you can see the two tie options that I set out before I dressed.  Pictured below is the tie that I ended up wearing. I knew that I would not have many more chances to wear this cold winter combination.

Again, I have nothing against spring. I invite the warm weather. I am hoping that it will cure my cabin fever.  I can’t wait to be able to leave the house in a Shetland with no coat, to break out the boat shoes and camp mocs, and to trade in my Saturday Tartan shirts for my Saturday Madras shirts. As the temperatures begin to rise over the next few weeks remember to wear it while you can.

The Bow Tie Find: Vintage Patterns & Labels

Featured Bow Tie Haul

While out running errands a few weeks ago I decided to pop into one of my favorite thrift stores. It is a little shop and while I have seen a lot of nice suits and sport coats there I have never found anything for myself. I went in the zero expectations, but I left with 12 bow ties for $3. Needless to say, it was a good trip.

Finding ties at thrift stores is easy. Finding ties that I like at thrift stores is a little more challenging. Finding bow ties at thrift stores has proved itself extremely difficult.  So when I found the first bow tie I was surprised. When I found 12 more that I Liked (and about 6 that I loved) I was ecstatic. I have included a few pictures of the bow ties below.

The Patterns

Green Wool Bow tieFerrell Reed Pheasant Bow TieYellow Paisley Huntington Bow TiePaul Stuart Bow TieVintage Madras Bow tieGreen Vintage Bow TieBatik Bow tieThe patterns are great, but there are some very cool labels as well. I found the Magnolia Cottage label first and loved its simplicity. I noticed the Welch, Margetson label in the store and immediately remembered that Richard Press mentioned the brand in a post (Here is that post: The Black Sheep). I didn’t discover the Made in England Rike-Kumler Co. in Dayton until I got home, but because it is local it is my favorite.

The Labels

MAGNOLIA COTTAGE Bow Tie LabelThe RIKE-KUNLER CO. Dayton Bow TieWelch, Margetson 8 Bow TiePaul Stuart Label on Bow Tie

An interesting fact that is relevant to this post is that I don’t actually wear bow ties. Well, I have worn a bow tie 3 times in my life, but I am still not comfortable in one, at least not in an office setting. However, I have learned that I do not know what the future holds. I may decide to wear bow ties in the future and that time I will appreciate the $3 investment.