Tied up in knots


What do the infamous mafia, Chuck Bass, Winston Churchill and James Bond have in common? They all rocked the bow tie with panache. Ironically for an accessory that grabs such attention, it has humble origins. From Croatian soldiers who wrapped scarves around their necks for warmth to the French who adapted it as a fashion accessory called La Cravat, decades of evolution has turned it into the bow tie as we know it today. Early 1900s saw the bow tie become popular with certain academic and ‘serious’ professions and it was not until the 40s that it became a pop culture staple.

The bow tie has recently graduated from an ironic accessory the hipsters wore to the strip of silk the cool kids wear. Scientifically proven to draw positive attention to the wearer, these can be worn either formally or as a contemporary addition to your outfit, where the accessory can be more than a retro throwback.

Still skeptical about it? Start off with a solid colour or stripes. Polka dots, paisley or novelty ones are not for the faint-heart. Tuxedos and dinner jackets seem like an obvious choice to wear them with but you can go casual and wear them with blazers, sweaters or a shirt and suspenders too. Avoid the pre-tied and clip-on variants unless you want to look juvenile. Above all, own the butterfly, straight-end, pointed, ribbon or batwing piece of tied fabric you have around your neck and look like you’ve always worn it.

Fun Fact: If you don’t want to splurge on bow ties, you can even make one with a neck tie.