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Bow Tie Sizing

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Bradford, Apr 19, 2006.

  1. Bradford

    Bradford Current Events Moderator

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    OK - so I purchased a real "tie-it-yourself" bow tie to wear with my tux and have found lots of instructions on how to tie it, which I am attempting to do!

    However, I did find one thread where it was mentioned that the bow tie should be one inch larger than your neck size to accomodate the knot. So the question is, having a 16" neck, should I put the adjustable tab on the tie at 17" for the knot or would that be already accounted for and should I just put it at 16".

    For those who are curious - I purchased a XMI black tie and cummerbund set from Sierra Trading Post - and yes I used the link from the forum.
     


  2. AlanC

    AlanC Minister of Trad

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    I always set my bows to the neck size I wear.
     


  3. A Y

    A Y Distinguished Member

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    I would try it out, and see how it turns out, because there's so much variabilty in terms of how much extra circumference your shirt collar adds, how tightly you tie the knot, and how you like the bow tie to present itself. I've found that making the bow tie shorter makes it slightly more difficult to tie, but the bow has more character and three-dimensionality when it's done due to the wings going more askew in more directions, and it's like the complete opposite of a flat clip-on bow --- it's almost an ostentatious way of announcing that you tied your own bow! With a longer bow, the knot can be looser and bigger, which has its own charms.

    The standard way to judge the right bow width when you're done is that it shouldn't be wider than your face or the outside of your collar, otherwise you'll look like a Christmas present. Flusser goes into this in one of his books, I think.

    --Andre
     


  4. Tomasso

    Tomasso Distinguished Member

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    I too adjust the tie to my neck size but it wouldn't hurt to experiment with the larger setting. If you're after a looser knot then the extra length will come in handy.
     


  5. Ed13

    Ed13 Senior Member

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    When I get a new bowtie I try tying it a few times with different lengths until I get it the way I like. As already mentioned, the tightness of the knot can make a difference. I like a relatively tight knot.
     


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