How To Match A Bow Tie With Your Outfit

The right accessories can elevate an overall look from cool to chic. For a true gentleman, the devil is in the details – no outfit matters when it comes to looking stylish.

Of course, the bow tie is the king of elegance. So how to pair it with your outfit? Here's our style guide to help you choose the right bow tie.

 How To Match A Bow Tie With Your Outfit

Knowledge about bow tie clothing

A bow tie front and center does more than just complement an outfit. It tells the world something about the wearer. The bow tie has a bold feel; its sophistication is unmatched by traditional ties.

The details of a bow tie can be as unique as the person wearing it. From pattern and fabric to wing size and shape, high-quality bow ties complete a wardrobe in a way that few accessories can.

Let’s take a look at the many options for handmade bow ties and how to match them with your outfit to achieve the look and composition you want.

How To Match A Bow Tie With Your Outfit

Bow tie size considerations

Some say style and comfort don't mix, but we disagree. At Hisdern, we create every piece with a gentlemanly touch and promote well-fitting suits and carefully chosen accessories.

One of the first things to consider is the size of the tie - the size of the tie itself (fashion), the length of the tie and the cut of the fabric (comfort).

Tie sizing considerations include bow, tie, and cut.

By far the most important size factor is comfort. The advent of adjustable ties has alleviated the inconvenience of having just the right length of tie, but measurement is still important. At Hisdern, our bow ties range in length from 15 ½ to 22 inches, and we also offer them in youth sizes.

It’s also worth noting that all Hisdern bow ties are cut on the bias, giving the fabric that vital stretch. This is important for both comfort and staying power. A bias-cut tie is more likely to retain its carefully hand-knotted shape.

Now, fashion. Different shirt types have different collar sizes and shapes, which can affect the position of the tie on the neck and accentuate the intended look. Generally speaking, the larger the collar, the larger the tie should be. The same goes for body shape and face shape. It's all about alignment and proportion. Accessories should complement, not distract, and matching sizes is crucial to doing this.

How To Match A Bow Tie With Your Outfit

Important subtleties of shape

Choosing the right bow tie shape involves more than just personal preference.

Tuxedos, suits, blazers, and casual dress shirts all require different neck styles. For this purpose, modern bow ties come in various shapes.

The correct bow tie shape can make your outfit look good
  • classic
This shape is the most popular – hence the name! This is a classic bow tie. At Hisdern, we call the classic bow tie a Henry tie, and when tied, it creates a neat 2 ¼-inch wing.
  • Butterfly
Bow ties are the most versatile. It matches most outfits and is a must-have in your collection. Hisdern has two bow-tie styles: the Phillips Bow Tie (2 ½ inch wings) and the Stewart Bow Tie (3 inch wings).
  • Straight or batwing

This is the smallest bow tie shape and therefore generally best suited for casual events. Our 2-inch straight tie is called the Jackson.

What we rarely think about these days is how to change the shape of a bow tie by changing the knot. For many gentlemen, knowing how to tie a bow tie is enough, so most of us stick to the basic knot. There are some simple yet effective ways to add a little extra flair to your bow, and in fact, it mostly depends on how tight you tighten the basic knots rather than learning a new set of knots.

How To Match A Bow Tie With Your Outfit

Examples of Bow Tie Outfits for Every Occasion

Bow tie suits for every occasion
Bow ties have long helped gentlemen stand out from the crowd. Knowing when to wear a bow tie is almost as important as knowing how to wear it.

Consider some common situations where you might find yourself in need of the perfect accessory:
  • Formal events (e.g. weddings, black tie events)
  • Professional and work environment
  • during holidays
  • semi-formal occasion
  • Essential accessories to pair with bow tie outfits
What’s a classic accessory like a bow tie without fun pieces to pair it with?

Cufflinks, tie clips, pocket squares and belts are all great ways to complete your look and, in the right circumstances, can go a long way to increasing your level of formality.