While fashion is notoriously fickle, some things are forever. Case in point: the necktie. Nothing has spoken more consistently to a sharply dressed man over the past century than this wardrobe staple. But while the tie itself is a perennial piece, the variations on it are endless and constantly evolving with the times. The Window turned to two expert sources of men’s style to find out what iterations are leading the sartorial pack this season: our own men’s buying team and the dapper dudes of Pitti Uomo in Florence, which wraps up today.
Stripes, textures, and patterns all vary with personal style, but our VP/DMM of Men’s Tailored, John Totolis, did offer one tip that will serve you well no matter which tie you choose. “Keep the knot tight, and snug to the color,” he advises. “When you are dressed this elegantly, the knot should be taught and sitting at the top of the collar band. No loose knots or sloppy Double Windsors.”
“We are big fans of the knit tie, which is a very sophisticated way to be a bit less formal, yet still tasteful and sartorial,” Totolis says of this style.
Hearkening back to prep schools and the Ivy League, a diagonal stripe is a classic that gets a modern twist by varying the width and colors of the stripes.
By incorporating threads in tonal shades of the same hue, a marled tie can give visual impression of texture and richness to a look.
“Solid ties are an easy way to modernize an outfit,” Totolis says, but solid doesn’t have to mean flat. Try out a style that adds unexpected texture, like a leather or beaded tie.
Any tie can be amped-up with the addition of a little something extra. Tiebars and tiepins were on full display at Pitti this season.
A style with each end a different color can add an unexpected touch to a look. And double bonus: simply reversing the ends when tying the knot means these ties are reversible and can do double-duty in your wardrobe.
Florals needn’t be overtly feminine—done right, they can add a layer of pattern to an otherwise classic look. “Patterns are great,” Totolis says, “but if you’re just easing into them, keep it simple and small.”
Go Bright Or Go Home
When in doubt, stand out. A tie is a great way to inject a dose of personality and fun into a look without committing to a larger loud piece. These styles will surely be the centerpiece of any look.