Men’s Style/Fashion: The Art of the Bow Tie

I’m just gonna come out and say it.

I’m not going to have too many nice things to say about the bow tie.

I have a love hate relationship with it.

With the hate percentage at 99.9%.

I guess the root cause of these vehement feelings is seeing so many examples of poor execution.

Let’s talk about the bow tie itself. There are so many varying proportions, that just with a dress shirt and the wrong tie, you end up looking like a party clown.

One of the fundamental principles that I firmly believe in fashion, is a sense of symmetry.

Proportion and symmetry in an outfit is vital, it brings an outfit together, yet allows you to appreciate the attention to detail and nuance.

An ill-proportioned bow tie already breaks rule number one, as I am focused on the travesty committed, and not the outfit as a whole.

John-Legend-wearing-a-70s-inspired-huge-floppy-bow-tie-with-peaked-lapel-1-button-tux-with-flap-pockets-and-patent-leather-captoe-Oxfords.-Note-his-sleeves-are-too-long--470x705 (1).jpg

Along the same lines is the amount of open space when worn.

A bow tie with a collared shirt, especially without a sports coat, draws attention to the nothingness at the torso.


Remember a bow tie normally shines brightest in formal attire, with cuff links and studs that add to the appeal.

This can be supplemented with a vest or sweater, but this also has to be properly fitted as well.

Too loose and it can look sloppy, too tight, and it looks like a dog collar.



Think I’m being too harsh?

Bernhard Roetzel echoes these same sentiments in his book “Gentleman: A Timeless Guide to Fashion.”

“Some men really like bow times and wear them almost all the time, but they are increasingly in the minority, whether because there always seems to be something slightly comic about the bow tie, or because the shirt front seems naked without the standard necktie . . .”


The bow tie is pretty much a niche staple in men’s fashion, that is rarely executed correctly.

I’m a huge advocate of game and being able to draw attention through your attire, but you want to attract the right kind of attention.

Let’s look at some brilliantly worn outfits, where the bow tie is worn to perfection:

Standard formal attire; good proportion.

Knot-Standard-elegant-tuxedo-819x1024 (1).jpg

Balance and proportion, taking away the”blank canvas.”


Cardigans and boleros can create an interesting look.



So, there you have it, take these considerations into account, and don’t have people staring at your poorly worn bow tie.

Weather Your Storm, Maintain Inner Reign -E


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