SPRING SALE - 10% OFF on Orders Over £60

How to tie a tie the English way

 How to Tie a Tie the English Way

The most common tie knot is small and precise - the four-in-hand. This name comes from horse-and-buggy days and may refer to how the reins fell when a coachman was driving a four-horse carriage. Or it may be the knot the coachman used on his own tie. All we know is that it has something to do with a four-horse carriage. The Windsor knot (named for the Duke of Windsor in the 1930s) is much larger and is the one you want for that "Big Knot" look. It looks best with a cut-away suit and a shirt with a wide collar. The half-Windsor knot is smaller than the Windsor and larger than the four-in-hand.

Some people prefer the ends to be exactly the same length after you've finished. Unfortunately, ties usually come in one size only, so it's hard to say where the ends will meet up. A tie that only hangs to the belly-button looks cheap; one that hangs over your fly is also tacky. Even worse, when the broad end is shorter than the narrow end. Instead, the tip of the broad end should extend just to the top of your belt buckle.

Sounds tricky? Fortunately, there’s a good general rule to follow. To begin, drape the tie around your collar. The broad end should be on the side of your dominant hand, if you are left-handed, the broad end should be on your left side. Now for the measuring trick: place the tip of the narrow end just above the fourth button down your shirt and eliminate the slack by pulling down on the broad end.

Another measuring trick is to let the broad end hang down twice as long as the narrow end. To check if you've done this right, fold the broad end in half up towards your neck. The folded portion should be equal in length to the narrow end.

There are 2 basic tie knots. The following are mirror reflection directions for tying each:

The Four-in-Hand

-          Start with wide end of tie on your right, extending it a foot below narrow end.

-          Cross wide end over narrow end and back underneath.

-          Continue around, passing wide end across front of narrow end once more.

-          Pass wide end up through loop.

-          Holding front of knot loose with index finger, pass wide end down through loop in front.

-          Remove finger and tighten knot carefully. Draw up tight to colour by holding narrow end and sliding knot up snugly.

The Half Windsor

-          Start with wide end of tie on your right, extending it a foot below narrow end.

-          Cross wide end over narrow end and turn back underneath.

-          Bring up and turn down through loop.

-          Pass wide end around front from left to right.

-          Then, up through loop and down through knot in front. Tighten carefully and draw up to collar.


The Windsor knot for That Big Tie Look

Getting that "big tie" look requires a nice heavyweight woven silk tie, the thicker the better. Our woven silk ties are perfect. Use this double knot for an extreme version.

Please browse our selection of woven silk ties using the categories on the left. We have 100's to choose from, of the highest quality at half retail prices.