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Roundup: Wedding Bow Ties

Last summer, David and I were picnicking near a wedding, and I noticed that all of the groomsmen looked like they’d been dressed up by the bride like so many Ken Dolls. I casually asked David what it felt like, as a groomsman, to be dressed up in whatever struck the bride’s fancy. He glowered darkly and muttered, “Not good,” and “Embarrassing.” And indeed. Bridesmaid’s dresses are hardly the best, but if they were picked by some guy who’d never worn a dress in his life? (I mean, just when you thought bridesmaid’s dresses couldn’t possibly get worse…)

The last time we did a groom (or ladies who tie) style roundup, some questions came up in the comments about how a woman should pick a tie she liked for her partner. I posited that you shouldn’t. Men should pick their own clothes. But not all guys (or partners) immediately know what they want to wear. And that’s where our roundups come in. Think of them as a jumping off place for discussion. “Do you like this? No? What do you like?”

Today we’re discussing the bow tie, which has two specific uses: part of black tie, and as a personal style statement. The bow tie is Men’s Style: Advanced. It’s for men who have something to say with their fashion. It’s not for Ken Doll dress up. No one should be put in a bow tie without consent. That just leads to looking like an uncomfortable penguin. It’s the equivalent of the female jumpsuit: hot if you can rock it, deadly if you’re being forced into it. However, there is nothing better than a bow tie done right. So without further ado we bring you Bow Ties: Classic (my favorite), Quirky, and For The Ladies. Prices are all over the map, and choices range from decidedly indie to decidedly not. Hopefully, a little something for everyone (who’s a bow-tie kind of person).

Classic: 1. Leather Band Bow Tie by Title of Work via AHAlife ($200) 2. Satin Dot Bow Tie from The Tie Bar ($15) 3. Cotton-Piqué Bow Tie by Turnbull & Asser via Mr Porter ($95) 4. Silk Bow Tie in Pindot from J.Crew ($55) 5. Velvet Bow Tie by Le Noeud Papillon Sydney via AHAlife ($152) 6. Point Bow Tie in Black Satin from J.Crew ($55)

Quirky: 1. Striped Linen and Silk-Blend Bow Tie by Beams Plus via Mr. Porter ($75) 2. When Pigs Fly Silver Bow Tie from The Tie Bar ($15) (There’s a joke in there somewhere…) 3. Quail Feather Bow Tie, hand stitched with a single feather, by Title of Work via AHAlife ($175) 4. 1970’s Classic Newport Bow Tie, handmade in New England from General Knot & Co. ($68) 5. Chambray White and Gray Stripe Cotton Bow Tie from The Tie Bar ($15) 6. Chambray Bow Tie in Indigo from J.Crew ($55)

For the Ladies: 1. Deadstock Sea Green & Royal Check Diamond Point Bow, handmade in New England from General Knot & Co. ($68) 2. Noah Reversible Gray/Red Bow Tie from CottonTreats ($34) 3. Pale Blue Oxford & Deadstock Harbour Stripe Reversable Bow Tie, handmade in New England from General Knot & Co. ($68) 4. Liberty Bow Tie in Emma and Georgina Floral from J. Crew ($65) 5. The Guinea, made from guinea fowl feathers, from Brackish ($120) 6. Cotton Gray/White Dots Bow Tie via The Tie Bar ($15)

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