My rule for style is simple: My girlfriend tells me what to do. She knows trends, fabrics, patterns, and, more importantly, she’s not slightly colorblind. But she cannot tie a tie. Thankfully, I’ve known my way around a half-Windsor for a while now. That’s time enough to know that even an accessory as simple as a tie brings with it a list of rules almost too long to take seriously (case in point: this book).
Here’s my personal cheat sheet:
Learn a knot and tie it well. My go-to knot is the half-Windsor. I can tie it in less than 10 seconds, and it complements my neck and face shape. Find one that works for you, and add to your repertoire once you’ve mastered it.
Make sure your tie ends at your belt. Not before it, not after it. I’m 6’4”, so I use extra-long ties to help me get there, especially if I use a bulkier knot. If you need some leeway, buy a thick belt.
Unbutton your top button if you go sans tie. This could fly at a casual office, post-work drinks, or on an unseasonably hot day. Two buttons is fine, but stop if you reveal chest hair or undershirt.
Make sure your tie has a dimple beneath the knot. Why? Because style is in the details, because it’s fancy, because my dad said so. And dimples are adorable.
But, of course, this could all change tomorrow. With vintage accessories being all the rage, short ties (from eras of high waistlines) are on their way back.
By Marcus Miller, Staff Writer
Have your own tie tips? Tell us in the comments below or tweet us @ruelala.
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