Dismiss Notice

STYLE. COMMUNITY. GREAT CLOTHING.

Bored of counting likes on social networks? At Styleforum, you’ll find rousing discussions that go beyond strings of emojis.

Click Here to join Styleforum's thousands of style enthusiasts today!

On Tie Knots and Shirt Collars

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by TweedyProf, Dec 21, 2016.

  1. TweedyProf

    TweedyProf Distinguished Member Dubiously Honored

    Messages:
    4,197
    Likes Received:
    2,731
    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2012
    So, the topic of nice knots comes up enough that I thought I would write a short blurb and invite comments and pictures. Everyone wants a pleasing knot so how can one achieve that? Well, it’s not magic, but as with most things we discuss here, a little knowledge might go a long way.

    Edit: Bonus...lots of pictures of nice ties.

    First, please consider your shirt collar first (a topic for a different entry). A shitty collar will not be aided by a beautiful knot. The collar provides the space for the knot to fill in an aesthetically pleasing way, so if you have a crap collar, no knot will save you.

    Second, various features go into a pleasing knot

    1. Fabric thickness and type. Heavy tweed fabrics will tie big knots and wool, IMO, tends to get eaten by a knot so I suspect, all things being equal, equal weight wool versus silk leads to unequal knots (this is partly why it’s ok for a wool tie to be a bit longer).

    2. The width of the tie at the knotting point. Presumably, as the tie gets wider at the blade, in generally, the knot will be larger. In bespoke, there are ways to control for this. For my first bespoke tie, I was concerned about a wool tie being too bulky, so Cappelli had it cut a bit narrower at the knotting point than my other ties (an advantage of bespoke).

    3. Interlining: Obviously, whether there is an interlining and what type, quality and quantity will matter. I think some interlining is always desired, to give the tie some bones and to help hold the knot in place.

    4. The type of knot: Four in hand, a pleasing simple knot. Double four in hand if you find yourself with a RTW tie that ties small knots.

    5. The skill of the person knotting: it is possible to tie crappy knots with the most beautiful of ties. Practice, practice, practice.

    I'm sure there are other factors that escape me at the moment.

    Most quality RTW ties should tie decent knots. I’ve had good luck with 8cm Drake’s, with the two Vandas that I have owned, and of course, with bespoke ties from Cappelli. The Hober thread is full of pictures of lovely knots as well.

    So, put points 1 and 2 together, and there’s an interesting variation that we might discuss further, the interaction between collar and knot. And of course, what is too large of a knot for someone is perfect, even too small, for another.

    Ok, you can now post pictures of your favorite knots by members here, with comments. Let me also ask David Hober to join in if he wishes, always a source of wisdom and knowledge. @Sam Hober

    Some of my own knots with comments

    1. Tie Your Tie, heavy tweed, knots large. 9cm. I would have preferred this tie to be cut narrower or perhaps with less of an interlining to accommodate the thickness and weight of the fabric. It's substantial but charming for that reason, given that it's so tweedy.

    [​IMG]

    2. Very chalky madder from Cappelli, which because it's actually a little hard to tie, knots larger than other silk (8.5cm). The spread collar here is probably a positive, given the knot. I might ask Patrizio to cut such madders a bit narrower while keeping blade at 8.5cm I find this true of shantung as well.

    [​IMG]



    3. The Cappelli mentioned earlier, cut thinner at the knotting point, so smaller than your average tie. Probably wasn't necessary for this material, a incredibly soft cashmere. A nice taper to the knot. 8.5 cm


    [​IMG]

    4. Turnbull and Asser tie, pleasing silk knot. 9cm I believe

    [​IMG]

    5. Soft wool challis that ties a lovely tapered knot (Cappelli): 8.5cm

    [​IMG]

    6. Drake's shantung 8cm. Knot is thick, with less taper (cf. above challis)

    [​IMG]

    7. Drake's wool 8cm (I find my Drake's wool to not taper at the knot as sharply as my Cappelli wool ties, so perhaps interlining or how the ties are cut...wool here is soft and fuzzy).

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 26, 2016


  2. Lancaster

    Lancaster Senior Member

    Messages:
    136
    Likes Received:
    43
    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2015
    This should be good. Subscribed.
     


  3. EliodA

    EliodA Distinguished Member

    Messages:
    3,769
    Likes Received:
    6,806
    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2013
    Location:
    Jakarta, Indonesia
    This thread gives you that same pleasantly guilty feeling of watching porn in secret. Subscribed.
     


  4. An Acute Style

    An Acute Style Distinguished Member

    Messages:
    3,683
    Likes Received:
    19,807
    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2011
    Location:
    New York, NY
    I love a good tie knot. This should be good.
     


  5. TweedyProf

    TweedyProf Distinguished Member Dubiously Honored

    Messages:
    4,197
    Likes Received:
    2,731
    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2012
    Let me give a shout out some members off of the top of my head who have impeccable knots to post some of their knots and discuss their views on this topic

    @Mr. Six
    @cezinho
    @Cleav
    @Pliny
    @sugarbutch
    @EFV
    @gdl203
    @UrbanComposition
    @gshen (also because he makes great ties and can comment more expertly on construction etc.)
    @Anden
    @Andy57
    @heldentenor
    @tchoy
    @unbelragazzo
    @jcmeyer
    @Murlsquirl
    @poorsod
    @Leaves

    but anyone can add thoughts and pics.
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2016


  6. TweedyProf

    TweedyProf Distinguished Member Dubiously Honored

    Messages:
    4,197
    Likes Received:
    2,731
    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2012
    



    You two should post!
     


  7. Caustic Man

    Caustic Man Distinguished Member

    Messages:
    8,386
    Likes Received:
    7,448
    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2012
    Fun thread, as long as it doesn't fall off the academic deep end. Good start.

    Here is an interesting knot on a vintage Irish poplin J. Press tie I wore recently. A dimple would look odd on a Ivy skinny tie like this, but it fits in very well with an Ivy aesthetic. I can't speak to the proportions here, but I think the knot is slightly too small for the collar. I did not, and do not, really care that much though.

    [​IMG]
     


  8. TweedyProf

    TweedyProf Distinguished Member Dubiously Honored

    Messages:
    4,197
    Likes Received:
    2,731
    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2012
    Academic deep end? Is there such a thing?

    Thanks for the pic. Would be better to have a straight on shot of that. I did not mention dimples but that's relevant too. I agree that it might look odd on a small knot. Perhaps you can tie this tie in both ways tomorrow on the shirt in question (or at some point). Would be interesting to see. My own preference is to have a bit more space between the collar points and the knot, lest things look too crowded. But YMMV.
     


  9. EliodA

    EliodA Distinguished Member

    Messages:
    3,769
    Likes Received:
    6,806
    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2013
    Location:
    Jakarta, Indonesia
    These days I rarely show my knots in public. I believe you left out @Claghorn in your list. The master of the dimple.
     


  10. TweedyProf

    TweedyProf Distinguished Member Dubiously Honored

    Messages:
    4,197
    Likes Received:
    2,731
    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2012
    Tis a sad thing Elio. Your pictures are missed.

    Yes, of course! @Claghorn get over here.
     


  11. Caustic Man

    Caustic Man Distinguished Member

    Messages:
    8,386
    Likes Received:
    7,448
    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2012
    That's a joke, right? [​IMG]

    Thanks for the comments. I might tie it the other way at some point. Can you clarify what you mean by having more space between the collar point and knot? I'm trying to picture that but I can't.
     


  12. TweedyProf

    TweedyProf Distinguished Member Dubiously Honored

    Messages:
    4,197
    Likes Received:
    2,731
    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2012
    I think for a button down, I prefer more roll and more space to frame the knot. Of course, this will depend on the size of the knot one prefers, but to populate this thread with some pictures of BD collars with small tie knots

    Astaire's collar might be a little too much frame for the size of the knot but who am I to be critical here?

    [​IMG]

    Brooks Brothers BD? Perhaps a smaller knot would be more desirable here? Peck, of course.

    [​IMG]

    Not as much roll here, more like your pic I would guess in having a less pronounced roll.

    [​IMG]

    And one of my own: Cappelli from Drapers linen on a Kamakura collar (DFIH knot)

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2016


  13. Caustic Man

    Caustic Man Distinguished Member

    Messages:
    8,386
    Likes Received:
    7,448
    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2012
    I see. Makes sense now and I think I agree with you. My shirt is Brooks, which doesn't seem to have much roll these days. It's hard to describe, but there is also a difference in the pitch of the collar roll in my shirt v. Fred's, for instance, for what it's worth.
     


  14. jcmeyer

    jcmeyer Distinguished Member

    Messages:
    1,584
    Likes Received:
    4,534
    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2010
    Location:
    RWC, CA
    My favorite knot is a 4IH that ends up with slightly more "weight" on the outside of the tie (direction the kink is pointing) (heh, kink) than the inside, which often seems to be a function of where the back blade is sitting. If the back blade is allowed to creep tot he outside the whole tie can rotate in the knot. But when pulled back to center the weight gets more even and the kink less kinked, and then I like it less – as with the first examples of each maker.

    I find the size of the knot to be most pleasing (heh, pleasing) when the largest part is roughly the size of the shirt placket.

    Vanda

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Shibumi

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     


  15. TweedyProf

    TweedyProf Distinguished Member Dubiously Honored

    Messages:
    4,197
    Likes Received:
    2,731
    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2012
    Need some pictures of when things go awry:

    [​IMG]

    A failure as tie knots go on my collars: a Drake's 9cm tie in a beautiful Shetland rust wool, lined, thick fabric, knotted tightly and yet still too bulky for my shirts. A spread collar would not look right with this fabric.

    Can I blame Drake's here? Should they not have adjusted the construction in some way, cut it to be more narrow, eliminated the lining altogether?
     


Share This Page

Styleforum is proudly sponsored by