Wedding Bowties, Knit Ties, Silk Ties: What Tie Should You Tie The Knot In?

Whether it’s you or a buddy that’s tying the knot (ie. getting married, hitched, jumping the broom), wedding attire is always important. And that includes your tie.

But before we get too deep into the topic, this is not an article about tying ties. We know, there are more ways to tie a tie than there are Fast and Furious movies, but that’s not what we’re doing here.

We want to make sure that you’re wearing the right tie at the right time. For tying tips, check out this video from GQ. Or here, if you’re looking for more complicated knots and bowties.

Since we’ve gotten that out of the way, here are a couple tips to help you choose the best ties for your wedding attire.

A Brief History of Neckties

Like many other things in menswear, ie. peacoats and t-shirts, neckties began with the military.

Back in the 17th century, there was a fetish for conflict throughout Europe. This led to the French hiring Croatian mercenaries, who wore neck sashes - to keep their jackets closed.

This spawned the French nobles’ fetish for neckties, otherwise known as “la cravate”. The British soon followed suit and started wearing their own, dropping the E - calling it the “cravat”.

These early iterations resembled the bowtie but more floppy - the material was not as robust. Check out this one worn by France’s King Louis XIV.

Fast forward to today, we’re accustomed to neckties in all shapes, materials, and patterns. Some ties give off more business vibes, while others more formal.

Wedding Tie Tips: Bowtie

As we mentioned earlier, this is the oldest style of necktie. So it’s no surprise that there’s an association with formal events.

If you find yourself going to a black tie or white tie (ie. formal weddings), then the bowtie is the way to go. And opt for a plain bowtie, as you can easily start treading on the terrain of satire, like Bill Nye.

Here are a couple more tips to nail the look and some modern examples.

Wedding Tie Tips: Colour/Pattern

The general rule is: the simpler the tie, the more formal it is. That’s why most plain colour ties are versatile, especially if you have a matching pocket square.

Striped and dotted patterns are great for semi-casual dress codes. Simple floral designs, like these, also work, since they're not distracting.

Reserve busy patterns - like animals, characters, tie-dye, and camouflage - for casual weddings. If the affair is suit-optional, then you can wear something with a bit more charisma.

Wedding Tie Tips: Material

The most common material on modern ties is silk. It’s light, lustrous, wrinkle-resistant, and strong as hell.

The perfect material for jamming it into your luggage while you head off to a destination wedding - almost forgotten underneath a pair of boxers.

Another great alternative material is wool; perfect for when you want a little less shine. Wool ties are also great for winter or fall weddings, matching your heavier wool suit.

Wedding Tie Tips: Length and Girth

Yes. Size matters when it comes to your ties. The golden rule here is: the wider you are, the wider your tie.

This is true in multiple ways beyond just your waistline. Men with very broad shoulders and smaller waists should go slim, and not skinny. LeBron James, though he looks great in almost everything, rarely goes skinny.

Most men should wear 2.5 to 3.5 inch widths. Your suit’s V-opening, when your jacket is buttoned-up, shouldn’t be silk-filled. Show off your shirt as well!

Length-wise, your tie should skim the waist of your pants. Longer than that, you’ll look like you’re cut in half - like someone grabbed a paintbrush and went straight down your body.

If your tie is both short and wide? Well, you’ll look like this guy.

Affordable Wedding Ties for Men

By dressing appropriately, wearing the tie that best suits the venue and dress code, you’ll be doing your part to make this special day even better.

If you need help finding the perfect tie for your next wedding, come by Tip Top. We’ll help you look and feel your best.

Back to the Gentleman’s Journal Next Article