Concerning Bowties | Bell & Barnett

Taking a Bowtie - Advice on When and Where to Wear Bowties

Bowties are cool! And more importantly, like pocket squares, they are increasingly being seen as acceptable and classy additions to formal and even smart casual wear. But, like all forms of fashion, there are some definite things you should be doing, alongside several recommendations. After all, you've decided to add some class to your look - you probably should know how to do it right!

First of all, know your types: the self, or free tie; the pre-tied, and the clip on. For that proper, classy appearance, you should probably with a free tied bowtie. Although it may be tricky at first (practice before hand, ladies and gentlemen), the reward is great - class and style. That being said, pre-tied bowties are being seen as increasingly seen as acceptable in certain circles. And whilst it wouldn't be advised to go to a cocktail party with a pre-tied or (Heaven forbid) a clip on bowtie, for a casual night with friends, there is nothing wrong with wanting to spruce up your outfit with a stylish bowtie like Bell & Barnett's wide variety of festive bowties.

The second piece of advice that should be made available is to know why you are wearing a bowtie, and what the event is. Traditionally, bowties are worn with tuxedos or make appearances at black and white tie events. As the name suggests, the bowties in black tie events will (most likely) be black, whilst at white tie events white bowties are an absolute must. However, there can be times when coloured bowties are allowed to black tie events, and that is when you have a slightly less formal summer event (called Warm Weather Black Tie), when you wear an off white suit and can get away with a nice maroon tie.

Formal black and white tie events have traditionally been the preserve of bowties (and let's hope they remain so), but what about semi-formal or even casual gatherings? Good news is that bowties are being seen as increasingly acceptable in these circles - in fact they can often project an air of confidence and style. Semi-casual and casual events also mean you can start experimenting with different colours. Want to wear that Doctor Who-esque bowtie (hopefully sans the fez), or that particularly wild bowtie that's been gathering dust in your wardrobe? Go for it, but make sure it compliments the rest of your outfit. Another thing to consider is that the bowtie will make a statement, and that it should be left to make that statement on its own. Therefore when you don the bowtie, make sure your shirt and suit (if you are wearing a suit) are more muted than the bowtie.

Another thing to consider is your size and the size of the lapel - these will help determine how big your bowtie will be. A good rule of thumb is that the bowtie should be the same width as the lapels on your jacket. However, if you have a smaller head, don't wear a large bowtie - it will make you look like a clown. Likewise if you have a larger head, try and stick with a larger tie.

Although the long and the short of it is that you can wear any bowtie whenever you want, there are certainly some highly advised courses of action and recommendations. However, no matter whether you are meeting the Queen for a white tie event or hanging with friends at a party, wear your bowtie with confidence. Confidence is one of the key aspects of wearing the bowtie. Enjoy!