eTies has been a great source of Euro-styled ties for a while now, but their latest batch of knit ties has us seriously reconsidering our collection. They’re going for around $50—after currency conversion, but before shipping. There are even some in there that could pass for grenadine…but mostly there are just so many of them. You may want to clear your schedule.
David Hart’s been on our radar since he stitched together this offbeat Batik tie, but his latest crop is just as handsome, and a good deal of it can be found at Bergdorf Goodman now. In particular, we’re looking at madras-hued cotton ties and a crop of outsized graphic silk ties that might be the neckwear equivalent of a Hawaiian shirt. But in a good way.
Ties have gotten a lot breezier in the last few summers, to the point that our favorite neckties are the ones made to be worn over oxford shirts, chambray and off-color button downs.
Case in point: this Gitman Vintage tie, newly arrived at Context.
It has less in common with a banker’s tie and more in common with picnic blankets or bandanas—which, given the season and our plans for the summer, is about right.
Record shops are consistently cool places, but they rarely overlap with the tie-wearing set. Luckily, Pierrepont Hicks is one of the more indie-credded tie brands. And they’ve got cool friends.
For their latest lookbook, PH took to the Minneapolis’ Electric Fetus record shop (once singled out as America’s worst-named business) with chaps from a few local bands and proceeded to remind us why we were so excited about summerweight ties in the first place.
More importantly, all the ties in the lookbook arrived on their site as of this morning, so you can snap up anything that catches your eye. This one’s our favorite so far, but we’re open to persuasion.
We’re strong believers in the painted tie, as both an accessory and a way of life. It’s the whimsical end of the neckwear spectrum, professional in the way that sculptors and pastry chefs are professionals—and it only makes sense that Partners & Spade would make one of the best options.
These ties follow the basic tie playbook—diagonal stripes and tastefully small polka dots—but all the patterns are hand-painted onto canvas, which means you might find a few unexpected tremors spicing up those stripes. They’re on the quirky end, to be sure, but as long as you’re pulling off a jacket and tie, there’s a limit to how precious you can get.
Aside from the actual football, our favorite show of last night was Motorola’s Apple-as-Big-Brother parable. Of course, giving flowers to pretty girls is bound to be a crowd-pleaser, but we had two other thoughts:
1) This might be the first time we’ve seen the wool tie put forward as a symbol of non-conformity. We’d prefer as less fast-fashiony version—a little less skinny, a little more tightly tied—but it’s still a sign of progress. When ties are outlawed, only outlaws will wear ties.
2) Those white hoodies looked a lot cooler than the tablet.
Conformity’s not all bad.
There’s no better way to win the hearts and minds of the sartorial set than a vintage tie clip, bar or pin. But before you break into the world of meta-accessories, you’ll want a map of the territory.
To that end, we present to you the three cardinal rules of accessorizing your tie. Learn them well.
The wool tie has been trending for quite a while now, but somehow we keep running across better and better specimens.
This one from Dolbeau lands somewhere between repp and knit ties on the tweediness spectrum (a pretty versatile place to be) and the 2¾” width is right on the sweet spot. And while you can pick up a similar piece from J.Crew for $60 less, it won’t have this kind of French wool and won’t catch the light nearly as well as this speckle.
Alexander Olch should watch his back.
Thomas Mason is a hallowed name in the world of shirting (just ask J.Crew), but nobody’s thought of applying that well-combed cotton to neckwear. Until now, that is.
The bespoke shirtmakers at Ascot Chang just released their Spring/Summer offerings, and tucked in among the vintage styles was this three-inch tie, stitched together from an impeccable Thomas Mason plaid. Eat your heart out, madras.
It’s not bespoke like the more customizable offerings from other outfits, but as long as you’re under 6’3” and relatively proficient at knotting, you should be fine.
If you’re feeling particularly ambitious, you can spring for a shirt in a matching (but non-diagonal) plaid—but we’d file that one under “advanced studies.”
An Affordable Wardrobe launched their online shop over the weekend, and we couldn’t resist a quick dip into the world of pennywise vintage. As with all thrifting, good judgment is key (the useful-seeming junk in someone else’s closet can easily become the useful-seeming junk in your closet), but there are plenty of gems to be found—especially if you’ve got room in your closet for a few more unorthodox ties.
We’d start with this one, a densely patterned relic of the LBJ-era neckwear. The style might be familiar from some of Hill Side’s recent projects, but this one’s a full three inches wide, and the colors are a good deal darker than the Corsillo Brothers’ Hawaiian variations. The rules for pulling it off are mostly the same—a button-down oxford and the simplest odd-jacket you’ve got—but if you’ve got a velvet smoking jacket handy, now might be the time.
One of the highlights of that Free & Easy editorial that popped up yesterday was the handsome fair isle tie popping up on the third gentleman. It’s a clever way to channel the classic holiday sweater without being completely swallowed up by patterned knitting.
It’s also a surprisingly scarce item, compared with the omnipresent sweater, so we’re always happy to see a new one cross our RSS.
The best option is still this J.Crew version, but if you’re willing to shell out a bit more in pursuit of neckwear perfection, this jacquard model from White Mountaineering just arrived at L.A.’s Union with a point-end and a more versatile pattern.
And if you balk at the sticker price…we’re guessing it’ll be on sale by January.
Now that skinny ties are past the point of trendiness, there’s a bit of confusion in the men’s style blogodome concerning the proper width for a gentleman’s tie. The ones you see in GQ seems to be getting wider, but exactly how wide is the subject of some confusion…
Alexander Olch has kept a pretty low profile the last couple seasons, but it looks like he’s been busier than anyone suspected. His new spring/summer crop weighs in with over 100 new items and a genuinely mind-boggling array of fabric tricks. Our favorite—aside from the wool ties, which pretty much go without saying—is the new batch of cloth-lined notebooks conveniently bundled with a matching pocket square. Great to have you back, sir.
With wool tie season in full swing, the plaid-minded folks at Gilbert & Lewis have finally ventured into the glorious world of eCommerce, bringing with them a crop of handsome, well-priced flannel ties.
As luck would have it, they also make the only pair of cargo shorts we’ve ever considered wearing…but we’ll have to wait another few months for that one.
We’ve seen the future of the necktie, and it is terrifying.
This Business Card Presenter Tie was created in a single-day whirlwind of creativity as part of Dominic Wilcox’s Speed Creating Project, but it’s only a matter of time before it changes the world. From afar it looks like your standard business-issue neckwear, but pull a tab and the tie lifts up Dilbert-style to present a dangling business card.
Of course, in a business setting, you’re probably trying to avoid making the other person burst into hysterical laughter…but maybe it’s different for creatives.
It’s a rare thing when a golfer turns out to be the best-dressed man of the week, but honestly, it’s about time.
In addition to pulling into the third-round lead at the BMW Championship, Ryan Moore shattered the sartorial boundaries of the sport by rocking both a tie and a cardigan. In a world that rarely strays from tucked polos and pleated slacks, that’s quite an achievement—even more so because he was working under strained conditions. An extra cinch of cloth could have thrown off his stroke all day. As a result, he stuck with the light, baggy drape you see on most golf clothes, and topped it off with a massive power tie to psychologically dominate his opponents.
The leaderboard speaks for itself.
Behold, the French side of trad.
Last season, the French accessories brand Flouzen collaborated with Kitsuné to bring us the Foxtail Tie—a crisp, color-blocked tribute to the fictional fox in “Fables de la Fontaine.” This season’s soon-to-arrive collaboration embraces the Ivy League epidemic with five styles inspired by Ivy League color palettes as a French iteration of the J. Press modus operandi. (Apparently Dartmouth, Cornell and Brown didn’t make the cut.)
However, their brazen admiration of preppy roots isn’t the only thing that caught our attention—the ties are made of delicate, handknit cashmere. While the cashmere tie venture is certainly a rare occurrence, we think it’s worthy of significant consideration. It’s the ideal fall accessory—the happy neckwear medium between the cashmere scarf and nothingness. Hopefully this fall will continue to bring more versatility to luxe knits.
We’d like to take every opportunity to indulge our collars.
The Hill-Side had way too much fun making their latest lookbook, with the help of a friendly crowd and a photobooth in Gowanus. They were also nice enough to invite various Friends of Kempt, who inform us that several ties were harmed in the making of this picture.
The fabric’s a mashup of wool, acrylic, nylon and cotton, but the end result is pretty close to felted wool—with enough dappling to keep it from blending in with your flannel suit. It also hits the 3-inch sweet spot for tie-width, making it a pretty much perfect example of the modern fabric-scrap school of neckwear. Find an artfully disheveled cotton suit and you should be just about set for life.
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