I’m just starting to build my wardrobe, what are your thoughts are the width of ties?
I love when my readers ask things I’ve never thought too much about. It gives me a chance to reflect, maybe draw some lines in the sand I hadn’t even known needed drawing before. This, though? This is not one of those lines.
Ties are a matter of taste. Put This On says 8cm looks best on most men, which – to me at least – is super abstract, but also that ties should match the width of your lapels, which is more helpful I think.
The way I see it, a tie should be in proportion to your body type. Skinny rocker guys can get away with skinny rocker ties, while bigger guys might look like one of those big giant lollipops if they wear neckwear too slim.
That said, I actually think a skinny tie only looks too skinny (read: hipster) if the rest of the outfit is super hipster too. So, skinny jeans, rolled sleeves, what have you.
Otherwise, i think it’s basically up to you. If you try on a tie with a width so wide you feel like a used car salesman from the ’70s, take it off and try something new. Y’know?
And don’t forget, as far as length goes: the tip of your tie should hit your belt but not go past it.
What are your thoughts on cummerbunds? I have a pretty traditional peak lapel tux and I’m a staunch supporter of black tie meaning bowties and not neckties. But the concept of the cummerbund really befuddles me and I’m not sure I want to wear one again. It’s just such a superfluous article of clothing. Certainly the trend among the beautiful people seems to be no cummerbund, but I’m of the opinion that formal wear shouldn’t be too influenced by current trends. Appreciate any insight you can offer.
Oh, you fancy huh?
Ha, sorry, but really! My first cummerbund question! But hopefully not my last, because really, think of all the cummerbund-related questions bouncing around your head AT THIS EXACT SECOND! There must be thousands of them. Send them all my way immediately.
So we’re going to have to agree to …well, mostly agree, on the topic of bow ties vs. neck ties. With a peak lapel tux, sure, you definitely want to go bow tie. But let’s not be glib – the cummerbund, in this scenario, is not totally unnecessary. Think of all the crumbs it picks up! Think of how well it holds your opera tickets (the two original designated functions of said black tie accessory).
If, however, you’re not headed to the opera, and feel you can successfully eat like a grown-up without spilling all over yourself (or at least know how to use a napkin), then do what you want.
And I’m with you – who cares about the beautiful people anyway? CERTAINLY NOT THE INSECURE SEVENTH GRADER THAT LIVES INSIDE ME AND STILL MAKES ALL MY LIFE DECISIONS, THAT’S FOR SURE.
So long as your waist is covered by your jacket at a black tie event, you’re pretty much good.