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The Ultimate Guide to How to Tie a Tie

Tie Your Tie like a Pro

Did you know mathematicians have calculated 177,147 different ways to knot a tie? Thankfully, you only need to learn one to look your best! 

Whether you’re a beginner when it comes to ties or you forgot how to tie a tie after years of not wearing one, we're here to help! As experts passionate about neckwear, we wanted to create a space that helps people who are new to wearing ties or want to experiment with new knots. 

We’ll start by helping you select the proper length tie. Then, it’ll move into tutorials for a few of the easiest tie knots, including the self-tie bow tie, the Windsor knot, and the Double Windsor knot. Jump to the section you need, or read them all to become an expert!

You'll also find video tutorials for each knot, so don't forget to check them out!

How To Determine Proper Tie Length

Wearing a tie can elevate your outfit, but only if your neckwear is the proper length. Ties that are either too short or too long will make you appear sloppy or unprofessional. 

Furthermore, ties that are too short may draw attention to the wrong place. For example, neckwear that rests on your stomach may make your belly look larger than it is. 

On the other hand, long ties may look goofy and even interfere with your bathroom duties. No one wants to get their necktie caught in their zipper! That's why you should always check the size of your neckwear before purchasing.

So, what's the proper length for a tie? The rule of thumb is that the tip of your tie should land on top of your waistband or belt buckle when you stand upright. Your tie's tip should never rest above nor below your belt unless it is a bowtie. 

For new tie-wearers who aren’t aware, the tip of a tie is the end that’s either square or diamond. On the latter, the corners of the diamond should line up with your pant waist.

Most people can get by with standard-length ties. However, tall people usually fair better with XL ties since these give them a few more inches to work with. 

Our neckties come in two sizes — regular and XL. Our regular ties are 60 inches long, while XL ties measure 63 inches in length. 

How To Tie a Self-Tie Bow Tie

Bow ties are a great option for formal occasions or black tie events, but you don't have to limit them to these affairs. Bow ties are a stylish way to express your personality during the work week or create a snazzy weekend outfit.

Many people shy away from bow ties because they seem a bit complicated to tie, but tying a bow tie is a breeze with a little practice. Here's how to do it: 

  1. Hang the tie around your neck, ensuring one end is a couple of inches longer than the other. Place the longer end of the bow tie on the right side of your body. 
  2. Place the longer side over the shorter one. 
  3. Then, bring the long end underneath the shorter end. Pull it out from the loop in the middle to create a loose knot. 
  4. Next, fold the short end across itself to look like a bow.
  5. Drape the longer end of the bow tie over the shorter end.
  6. Fold the longer end of the bow tie horizontally, so it resembles a bow shape. 
  7. Pull the longer end of the bow tie through the loop at the back of the shorter end.
  8. Tighten the knot by gently pulling both ends. 

You'll likely have to do this a couple of times to get it just right, but don't worry if it isn't perfect! Some little imperfections add character and let others know it isn't a pre-tied bow tie!  

If you're more of a visual learner, be sure to check out the video version of our bow tie tutorial!

How To Tie a Windsor Knot

The Windsor knot (also known as the Half Windsor knot) is incredibly versatile because it works with all-size shirt collars and lapels. The Windsor is characterized by its medium-sized and slightly asymmetrical knot. When done correctly, it has a deep dimple.

It looks great at work, but it's not too casual for a cocktail party. If you're only going to learn how to tie one knot, this one is a great choice! 

You can use practically any tie to make your Windsor knot, but we recommend materials of light to medium thickness since these are easier to work with. Here's how to make the perfect Windsor knot: 

  1. Begin with the wide end of the tie on your right and the narrow end of the tie on your left. The front of the narrow end should lay slightly above your navel, and you'll only manipulate the wide end of the tie. 
  2. Place the wide end over the small end to the left. 
  3. Guide it under the small end, to the right.
  4. Bring it up to the middle toward the neck loop.
  5. Now guide it through the neck loop and to the left.
  6. Bring it across the front to the right.
  7. Move it up into the neck loop from below. 
  8. Guide it downwards through the loop you should have created in the front.
  9. Tighten the knot by pulling on the wide end. You may need to slide it up and adjust it a bit. 

Use our “How to Tie a Windsor Knot” video tutorial to help you master this knot.

How To Tie a Double Windsor Knot

This knot was inspired by the Duke of Windsor, who wore a wide triangular knot. He created it by tying a Four-in-Hand knot with extra wide and thick ties. However, the Double Windsor knot (also called Full Windsor) imitates his style using any tie, although thicker materials do work well and help create a solid and symmetrical shape. 

The Windsor knot is best with a wide-spread collar on formal occasions. Wearing it will make you look confident and professional. 

Let's see step-by-step instructions on how to tie a Full Windsor knot! 

  1. Begin with the wide end of the tie on the right and the narrow end on the left. The tip of the small end should rest above your navel, and you'll only want to move the wide end. 
  2. Move the wide end to the left and drape it over the narrow side.
  3. Pull it underneath and into the neck loop.
  4. Bring it down and across the left side.
  5. Now move it around the back of the narrow end to the right.
  6. Pull it up to the center again, toward the neck loop.
  7. Bring the tie through the loop and across the right side.
  8. Now move it across the front to the left.
  9. Bring the end up into the neck loop from underneath again.
  10. Finally, pull down through the loop in the front.
  11. Tighten your knot by pulling the wide end and sliding the front of the knot up. Adjust as needed.

If you need extra help, be sure to check out the video version of this Double Windsor tutorial!

Find the Perfect Tie for Every Occasion with PRIME Neckwear

While there are thousands of possible necktie knots, only a handful are popular. With the help of these tie-step tutorials and instructions, you can become skilled in three of the most common types of tie knots. 

Once you master these simple knots, you can move on to other classic styles, like the Pratt knot. Or, challenge yourself with more adventurous styles, like the Eldredge knot, Trinity knot, or Balthus knot. So, get to work and remember that practice makes perfect!

If you're searching for premium neckties, look no further than PRIME Neckwear! We offer a wide selection of ties, bow ties, and accessories like tie bars so you can look your best on every occasion!

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