Tip-of-the-Day: 7 1/2 Ways to Wear a Tie with Attitude

December 1st, 2010

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More and more guys are wearing neckties not because they have to, but because they want to. It’s a style choice, and a good one (depending on how you wear it).

I can’t think of an accessory that can completely change a look more than a tie. The trick is separating a look that says “I have a meeting with my boss” from a look that is more “I just want to wear a damn tie”.

Here are a few quick and easy ways to separate the two. How to pull-off a tie with a little attitude.


1. Unbuttoned & Unbuttoned

Loosen the knot, open the top of the placket and unfasten the collar buttons. Just a touch of nonchalant imperfection.

Bonus tip: don’t have the right pocket square to go with your outfit? How about a bow tie…

Bonus tip II: rustic gunmetal buttons are a more contemporary and less predictable choice for a classic blue blazer, rather than the traditional gold or brass emblem/crest buttons.

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  • Linkson Jack

    What is consistent about the selection of ties above is the quality of timeless style. The ties at Linkson Jack will appeal to anyone who liked the ones above.


  • Anonymous

    I actually wear the unbottoned & the backside longer looks in the photos. My customers will enjoy the tie tips. I tweeted the article to my followers!


  • Falcon

    Great tips! This is actually similar to a blog post we just did on wearing ties in Summer!


  • Bryan

    really enjoying your blog! learning a lot from this. thank you

  • Abe

    Bow tie as a pocket square? GENIUS!adding this to my wardrobe.

  • stanley lewis

    Great, great post! It’s something I have never thought about, really, but it makes a whole lot of sense.

  • Badger

    I’ve been wearing bow ties as pocket squares for ages. Nice to see it “legitimized”!

  • Custom Ties

    There are so many ways to wear ties, and the way that they are worn is important. Everyone makes an assumption toward your appearance subconsciously, and how your tie is worn is a major part of this judgment.

    most ties can easily get to costing $80, but they do not always have to be, especially when they are high quality.

  • Versus

    Why recommend such styles? All of them seem affected (except the untied bowtow, but only at the end of night as you specify), in the manner of childish rebellion. The effect is to appear is if one is either drunk, or simply got dressed without a mirror.

  • vali

    wow, the second look is amazing!!! I’m dreaming now at the rl belt, but it’s so freakin’ expensive! I’ll better start saving…

  • JG

    The 1st and 8th photograph are quite sharp. The style suits you very well. I do, however, protest that a denim vest is a bit of a stretch. Perhaps the classic style in me is speaking; I just cannot understand the purpose of a denim jacket and denim vest.

    Nevertheless, great posts as usual.



    p.s. Take your watch off when you wear a tuxedo. A gentleman could care less about what time it is at events that require tuxedos.

    • Badger

      You mean “Couldn’t care less.”

  • Robert from DC

    An extra 1/2 to make a full 8. I have this weird fascination when wearing a sweater, vest or waistcoat to have the backside hang down PAST the bottom of them. I start by having the backside near my waist then I do a 4-in-hand with an extra loop. This creates a bolder knot (nothing crazy) and leaves the backside longer than the front (who cares since it’s covered). It creates a unique perspective as long as the tie doesn’t hang more than an 2 inches past your belt. It’s that little Sprezzatura that adds to the look(especially when the tie is BOLD).

    Keep up the good work,


  • Paul

    That last Tuxedo shot — class!

  • cravate

    J’ai eu besoin d’une cravate étroite. Ici, sur Cravate.org, j’ai trouvé quelques cravates étroites. Les articles étaient super et le prix était simplement génial. Cette boutique est absolument recommandable.

  • corbata

    Necesitaba una corbata delgada. Aquí en Corbatas.es he encontrado algunas corbatas delgados. Los productos fueron excelentes, y el precio es simplemente genial. Solo puedo recomendarlos.

  • Anonymous

    Ich bin regelmäßiger Krawattenträger und trage auch ab und zu gern eine Krawatte weiss. Zu einem weißen Hemd sehen die sehr gut aus, wie ich finde.

  • Liam

    I really like your look in the “backside longer.” I’m a big fan of ties right now, and I found a pretty cool site that has videos on 15 different ways to tie a tie: http://www.abcneckties.com/how-to-tie-a-tie/
    I knew a couple of the ways, but some of the more obscure ones are a good way to make your tie look a bit different.

    • P

      Pfffttt. 15 ways to tie a tie?! You need a copy of The 85 Ways to Tie a Tie!


      It’s a neat book on ties that includes a history of men’s neckwear as well as lots of knots.

      Also, I went with look number 1 for a party at my apartment last Saturday and found myself violently head-locked until I agreed to button the buttons. Wear with caution.

  • Arlequin

    I’m an avid reader of your site but I have to say that look 5,6 and 7 is on point!!
    Using the same fabric for the tie and and the suit jacket is something that I’ve never seen before, and you really topped it off with the black Persols.
    Your shade collection is pretty dope, I recently bought the tortoise Steve Mc Queen with blue lens, and they’re my favorites among all my shades.
    Thank you for being so inspirational, I think you’re outlook on Men’s style is very interesting.
    Keep up the flyness Dan!

  • TO

    Nice timing on the century 21 tip… I wasn’t sure if it was going to be worth it but I might have to stop in this weekend :)

  • Chris

    Hey Dan,

    Have you thought about doing a video post on your shaving/morning routine? What beard trimmer do you use to keep your stubble? I’m in the market for a new one.


  • Sal

    I do the tie tuck when i’m wearing a sweater over my shirt; i find it holds nicely in place and i don’t have to worry about the tie showing through the sweater material.

    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      Good call! You could also tie it a little shorter to keep it out of the way. Thanks for reading, Dan

  • Julian

    Eaventhough I’m not really a fan of wearing ties loose, twisted or tucked I got to admit that the styles really fit you.What i do like is the navy blazer with the gunmetal buttons. Idon’t like golden buttons so I’ll definetly copy this look…
    I also got to admit that I’m thinking of stealing your tie collection. All of the ties featured on the blog are beautiful. I’m always looking for ties to add to my collection but it’s hard to find pieces with the right width.
    I guess european men like wider ties…

    As always Thanks for the inspiration!


    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      Thanks Julian. For the record, (currently) I think the perfect tie width (for a guy who is tall-ish and slim-ish) is 2 3/4″ (2.75″).


  • Joey Dee

    Loving number 7. Well, they are all great looks, but am afraid of number 3. No problem with tucking the tie in, but the sleeveless denim jacket, its something that you can do much better than i. All good looks.

    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      The sleeveless denim jacket can be a little tricky. I originally cut the sleeves off so thatit would fit more easily as a layering piece under outerwear (post on this coming soon)…but then I just started wearing it on its own. Why not?

      Thanks for reading,

  • The Shoe Snob

    I like the new header to your blog. Way to include some shoe action. Those saddles are killing it!


  • Amir

    Excellent looks Dan. All of them. I had a question though. I noticed that in most of your looks (if not all), you are not wearing anything black (i.e. pants, shirt, jacket) but the shades in your second look are black. I have learned, in my opinion at least, that staying away from black colored garments allows you to wear more color in your outfit and your looks are proof to this. I just wanted to get some insight on your take on the versatility of black shades vs tortoise shell for a wardrobe that consists of many neutrals with the exception of black and which color can be worn more. Thanks

    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      Hey Amir. Thanks for reading.

      The shades in the second look are actually tortoise color. I also have the same pair in black (also in look 5/6/7).

      Of those two, I wear the tortoise more often (especially in the summer). I usually only wear the black frames with muted outfits and black leathers, while I wear the tortoise frames with more colorful outfits and with basically any leathers other than black; brown, cream, cognac, oxblood, green, etc.

      Hope this helps.


  • bcarroll208

    The two pairs of persols are as classic as it gets. My favorite model are the steve mcqueen edition lighter tortoise with the blue lens. You probably have that pair too. Thanks for the inspiration. I’m currently in college hoping to do similar work with fashion.


    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      Good call. Those are up there with my favs as well. I have a post on colored lenses scheduled. Stay tuned! :)

      Thanks for reading.


  • manmanifesto

    love it! I also noticed the perfection of the tie knots – something that shows that u care about the way u present urself. Check out my blog and my post on tie knots…


  • Daniel

    The second last look is boss. Nicely done!

  • Dane

    Ok so call me a poser but i absolutely am diggin the tie in shot #2 the Silk knit tie by Galleni. How much and where online can i get that.

    If you wanted to “donate” to me thats fine too Dan. :)

    Thanks for any advice you can give.


    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      Haha. Thanks Dane. I think I got that tie at Century 21 in NYC…which means it was probably 50-80% off. If you’re in the city, it’s worth a look, especially for silk knit ties. But bring a big bag of patience, that place can get crazy, especially this time of year.

      All the best,

  • cam

    you should only sip kentucky bourbon ;)

    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      Good drink, but I have to show love to NY!

  • Nader

    Sharp Banner, any chances to see that photo with the waistcoat ?

    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      It’s in the queue. Should be published in the next couple of weeks.


  • Thatguy

    what kinda knot do you use?

    I use the 4 in hand( sometimes a double) and the kent

    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      Tie knot depends on a number of factors (the tie’s width, heft, fabric, the spread of the collar, with of the jacket lapels, knit gage of a sweater, etc). Most often I probably use a simple 4-in-hand.

      Thanks for reading.


  • Brunello

    Hi Dan,

    Love the twisted tie look. Is this something you don on the regular?

    PS–Where’s the best spot for a dope grilled cheese in NYC?


    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      Hey Brunello. I don’t think there is anything that I really “don” on the regular. I switch it up from day to day.

      The best grilled cheese I’ve had in the city (other than the gourmet ones cooked in my kitchen with fresh ingredients from the farmer’s market) is on the brunch menu at Five Points on Great Jones & Lafayette. Hands down. It will change the way you look at a grilled cheese.

      Thanks for reading.


      • Brunello

        Thanks, Dan. And, yeah, I agree with you on doing it up homemade.

        Is this the one you mean?

        Griddled Cheese Sandwich 14.

        Double Smoked Bacon, Aged Cheddar Cheese, Sliced Pears, Grain Mustard

  • John


    What kind of boots would you recommend for the winter. I’ve been trying to find some but I can’t find any nice ones– do you have any tip because all the nice ones that I find are from gucci and d&g and I don’t have that money.

    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      Post on boots coming soon, with different price points.

      Thanks for reading.


  • Collin

    I’m a junior in highschool, been dressing up since 6th grade. People have really accepted me that way, but I still get the idiot asking “sooo, why are you dressed up today, something special?” No, I just want to wear a damn tie =] Thanks for the tips.

    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      Haha. I’ve been there Collin. It may take some time, but if you do it right, eventually you can make the transition from people asking “why is Colling dressed like that?” to “I can’t wait to see what Collin wears tonight” :)

      And you’re starting to think about your personal style long before I did.

      All the best,

  • Ag

    Also, noticed the new banner. The braided braces have me intrigued.

  • Ag

    Great motivation and execution of the post Dan.

    However, I have to say, I would not do the bow tie-pocket square swap when I am already wearing a neck tie. I find it a little too contrived.

    Instead, use the bow tie as a pocket square when, you are going open collar? Keeping the option open to put it on? What do you think?


    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      Good tip! Thanks!

      If you’re wearing a bowtie but forgot a pocket square: when you take off the tie, stuff it in your breast pocket! You can always put it back on later.

      Thanks for reading and for sharing.


      • CAS

        Funny, I did a similar thing a couple days ago. Was wearing a bowtie for work.. afterhours, took the tie off and stuffed it in my topcoat pocket. Its always fun to play with accessories and find new and creative ways to style your outfit.

  • Travis

    A leather vest = a major no no.
    A denim vest = who knew?


    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      No sure if I agree there! Stay tuned.

      Thanks for reading, Dan

  • Trublue

    Everytime I read this blog, I am a better man.

    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      So are you saying that, in a way, I’m making the world a better place? Hopefully my mom reads this…haha

      Thanks for reading!

  • Jack

    Great post, especially like the backside longer look, never knew you could wear a tie so differently, what knot do you tend to use?

    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      Depends on a number of factors, including the tie itself and the spread of the collar. Most often probably a simple 4-in-hand knot.

      Thx for reading.


  • Anonymous

    That Theory cotton topcoat is fucking awesome. You should do product selections, like Prepidemic does piece of the weeks and what not. You always have pieces that are spot on, yet impossible to find myself!

    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      This saying comes to mind: “You can catch a man a fish, and feed him for a day. OR you can teach him how to fish, and feed him for a lifetime”.

      There are hundreds of blogs out there with “go buy this” type of reviews. This is not my intention with this site.

      Rather than write “I recommend buying this coat, which is in stores now”, I’d rather say “look for a coat with these features, this fabric, this fit, etc”. In my opinion this type of advice is more informative and appeals to more readers. Those interested can then find similar pieces in a range of budgets and a variety of stores, no matter where they live.

      After all, the cotton topcoat, like alot of my clothing, is a few years old and the exact style is no longer available in stores.

      I do agree, however, that “perfectly” designed pieces are very difficult to find. This, among several others, is one of the reasons I am starting to design my own line.

      My advice: if you do find a good deal on something that is exactly what you’ve been looking for, pull the trigger. And if it really is “perfect”, buy it in more than one color.

      Thanks for reading!


  • The Shoe Snob

    I love ties and I just recently started getting into bow ties. Now I just want to buy a ton of them. Love the Donegal tweed tie/jacket combo, especially in gray, when it’s always sharp! Would have liked to see a couple of more casual outfits with ties though i.e. with jeans and such. Good post anyway, keep it up!


  • Pierre

    Sorry… To me they’re all affected, except the bow tie at the end of the wedding or fundraiser. Tie the tie once in the morning, make sure it’s neat, and let the chips (ends) fall where they may. Anything else is trying too hard.

    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      Thanks for sharing your opinion. I’m sure there are plenty of more conservative dressers that agree. But where’s the fun in that? :)

      Thanks for reading, and for sharing.


  • Trublue

    Thanks SB. I really did not know.

  • http://www.MensStylePro.com Sabir P.

    The tie tuck is a new one for me. I havent seen to many people attempting to pull it off. Do you have an “attitude” style of tie wear that you prefer?

    • http://www.thestyleblogger.com SB

      A favorite? Not really. Probably whichever I haven’t done in a while. Styling choices depend on a number of variables I think: the outfit’s other pieces, fabrics, the day’s schedule, weather, personal emotions, the message I’m trying to convey, etc.

      Cheers Sabir