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How to wear a tie casually

Your guide to living in style

Are you looking to stand out in a casual setting? Wanting to pull out those silk ties for more than just formal events? Maybe you’re looking for a great way to dress up your casual outfits. Sometimes the easiest way to stand out at casual occasions is simply to throw on a black tie, wide tie, bolo tie, or even a bow tie. With so many different types of ties, this guide is sure to give you a little more direction the next time you’re looking to stand out.

A bow tie can be a great way to dress up your casual wear

On the topic of bow ties, this tie choice is a little more difficult to pull off with your casual outfits. Bow ties, when done right, are a great way to up your tie game and give you a great look on special occasions. When done right, they can even give you that perfect balance for casual occasions that are bordering on formal events. The most important thing with the bow tie however, is not letting its unique look overpower your personal style. In fact, I’m dedicating a whole article to the bow tie, check back soon for a link to my upcoming article.

In short, a good general rule is to pair a bow tie with a casual button-down. You can sometimes even get away with bright colors, intricate designs, or polka dots. A bow tie worn with plain shirts generally doesn’t work in a casual setting, people will wonder if you’ve taken off your sport coat. And you definitely won’t be a rock star whose tie choice screams casual Friday.

Knit ties are a great way to dress up casual outfits

They’re also one of the easiest ways to give a formal suit a more casual look. If you’re not quite ready to up your tie game by wearing a bow tie, knit ties provide the perfect balance between a more relaxed look and a formal dress code. The most important thing about knit ties is that they have a unique texture. This will spruce up your casual attire, to the point where you can get away without wearing a suit jacket. Definitely consider using knit ties to dress up your next casual Friday outfit.

What are some other tips for wearing a tie casually?

Not only does the type of tie and overall outfit matter, but so does the width of your tie. To achieve a more casual look, your tie’s width should be similar to your jacket’s lapel. While some prefer a wide tie, I tend to opt for a slim tie (medium thickness). They go well with more modern fitted suits. For the more adventurous, there’s also the option of the skinny tie. The verdict is still out on the skinny tie, but I have to say that I think it tunes down a formal dress code, adding more of a hipster vibe.

Another key to achieving casual tie success is your choice of color of sport coat and button-down shirt. Generally your shirt and jacket should be different tones, for example, a dark color sport coat, with a light color casual button down. Respecting this important style rule will give you more flexibility with your choice of tie material and pattern.

Casual wear doesn’t mean sloppy!

Even though you’re looking to dress down by wearing a tie with a casual outfit, there’s still a right way to wear your tie. Casual wear doesn’t mean you can throw on a tie in a disheveled manner. It just means that you have more flexibility with what you wear, and how you wear it. It can sometimes be a good idea to start off with a looser tie rather than one that is super tight and right up against your neck. Be careful though, as wearing your tie too loosely can turn your casual outfits into a sloppy mess. One other big consideration is how your tie hangs in relation to your belt.

How long should my tie hang?

When you’re doing your tie knot, you’ll first need to measure your tie. A general rule is that neither end of the tie should hang below the waist. But you also don’t want your tie to hang much above the waist. Perfecting your tie knot and getting your tie length just right tend to happen together. Don’t worry if you can’t get it at first, practice makes perfect.

Silk ties are a great way to up your style for special occasions

Silk ties are the focal point of any formal outfit or business attire. With plain shirts, you can get a little more adventurous, opting for something with intricate designs or bright colors. And you can’t go wrong with a solid color tie.

Everybody needs a small collection of novelty ties

I used to be a teacher, and I always enjoyed pulling out one of my novelty ties for special occasions in the classroom. I wouldn’t recommend wearing your novelty ties on casual Friday, as one can only have so much of a good thing. But they’re great for special occasions like Christmas or Halloween. Since novelty ties are usually worn in a casual setting, just about anything goes. So they’re a great way to try out something new, perhaps bright colours, dark denim, unusual patterns, or intricate designs. I’m going to include the bolo tie here, as a novelty tie. Unless you live in a rural farming area, it’s not likely something that’ll be part of your tie collection.

And what’s the best kind of tie knot?

In my experience, the single and double windsor knot are the most common knot. Both work with a multitude of types of ties. You can get a lot fancier, like a four-in-hand knot, the eldredge knot, the trinity knot, and many more. A quick YouTube search will reveal so many different ways to do your tie knot. The most important thing is to learn to tie one or two tie knots really well. As long as you’re not using your childhood clip-on tie, then you’re well on your way to being a tie rock star.

What are my concluding thoughts about pairing a tie with your casual wear?

While it would seem that there are so many rules to follow, from bow tie to knit ties, silk ties, and skinny ties. If you’re wearing a tie with your casual outfits, and you’ll be in a casual setting, then truly anything goes! You won’t be judged according to fashion trends if you’re sporting a tie in a casual setting. If anything, I’d encourage you to take risks, try something new, you never know what you’ll discover, or what casual wear trend you might set into motion.

And finally, this is possibly the best way to be sure you succeed at wearing a tie casually: wear it like a rock star! Embrace your newfound use for ties with casual wear. You’ll quickly realize that there are countless different ways to incorporate ties into your casual outfits. Before you know it, you’ll have your perfect casual outfits worked out, and your rock star confidence will get you there all the faster.

Published by wandermileage

I love to travel, explore, and experience new places.

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