Category: History of Neckties

The Origins of the Shelby Knot

Shelby Knot

A lot of styles have been introduced in the tie-tying business over the decades. Most tie-tying methods have been mixed with other methods to form the perfect technique. One of these brilliant mergers of the Nicky Knot and the Windsor Knot is the Shelby Knot. As we move on, I will share some basic information regarding this everlasting tie-tying method.

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What is the Shelby Knot?

The Shelby Knot, also known as The Prat Knot or The Prat-Shelby Knot is a method of tying a tie around one’s neck and collar. The knot was created by Jerry Pratt, who was an employee of the US Chamber of Commerce. The knot was considered a revelatory knot although it has a lot of resemblance with the Nicky Knot. The Shelby Knot is an unusual type of knot using the ‘reverse side out’ method.

The History of Shelby Knot:

It all started when one day, the 92-year-old Jerry Pratt showed up in the television studio to tell the 42-year-old chief anchor of WCCO-TV Don Shelby that he did not know how to tie the perfect knot. Onwards, Mr. Pratt told Mr. Shelby that Pratt would let him know a secret of his which can teach Mr. Shelby how to tie the perfect knot. This knot was supposed to be balanced, well-proportioned and perfectly symmetrical.
The ways of tying the perfect knot which were shown by Mr. Pratt to Mr. Shelby combine to form a term known in the recent times as The Shelby Knot. Shelby then refined the knot made by Pratt with a local clothier known as Kingford Bavender and started wearing it on air with a spread collar. Hence, the rise of a new style in the neck-tying business was witnessed. The Shelby Knot mainly gained popularity in the late 1986’s due to its perfect symmetry and trim precision.

A Closer Look:

The Pratt-Shelby, or more commonly known as, The Shelby Knot is a variation of both the Windsor Knot and the knot notorious to most of the masses, The Nicky Knot. It begins with the tie seam facing outwards and produces a symmetrical and triangular knot. The Shelby Knot produces a medium size between the Four-In-Hand and the Windsor Knot. This knot uses less fabric than a full Windsor, however, produces a knot which can easily be mistaken for it.

How to tie a Shelby Knot?

There are mainly four steps in which you can tie a perfect Shelby Knot.
1. Flip the tie upside down, with the seam facing outwards.
2. Cross the wider part under the narrow end of the tie. Make a loop just like in a Half Windsor.
3. Bring the wide end over the top of the loop and form a triangle.
4. Slip the wide part through the triangular loop and fix the dimple accordingly.

The Shelby Knot is a traditional way to tie your neck tie and is an everlasting method considered highly in the formal dressing code. People have been using this method for a long period of time. Still, this method is followed by most of the people who tie a tie around their necks and collars.

For a visual guide/demonstration of tying the Pratt-Shelby Knot, watch the following YouTube video (done by Don Shelby himself) here:

Men of Hollywood and Their Ties

The Original Ocean's Eleven.

The Original Ocean’s Eleven. The Ratpack.

The dashing men of Hollywood and the variety of ties that we get to see on them

In the past two centuries, there have been a lot of changes in fashion and trends and people are embracing these challenges at a rapid pace. It’s great to follow a trend as long as you don’t forget the basics.

We usually look up to our favorite actors and character to follow when it comes to style and fashion. This award season, you can see your favorite actors in their best suits and tuxedos. One thing that they will all be wearing to complete their look are neck ties. A man’s formal outfit is incomplete without a necktie or a bow tie. The necktie or a bow tie gives these male celebrities a chic and formal look while adding a splash of color to their dark colored suits. is giving away a free tie with promo code “FREETIE”. Claim yours now!

Ties and Bow Ties

Necktie is still an integral part of men’s fashion industry. Even though we have seen the necktie change over the years on the red carpet, it has been worn for every formal event in Hollywood. The changing styles of ties might have something to do with the changing times in Hollywood as trends in movies and characters change, so do neckties.

The Last Century and its Important Ties

Most of you have watched the Great Gatsby and if you paid close attention, you would have seen that ties were an integral part of a man’s look. They wore broad shouldered coats, lean cut pants, and great big overcoats, all in the same color. Over that huge mountain of dark or tan colored suit was a necktie or a bow tie, adding a little splash of color.

Back in those days, a necktie was an indication of what kind of man you were. If you were someone rich and important, you will be wearing a silk tie in some really rich color like blue or red. If you were someone not so important, you should be happy with a faux-silk tie or a cotton tie. The best tie wearer from those times that we still remember today is Charlie Chaplin. On the black and white screen, Chaplin’s black tie still serves as an icon to many styles and trends. Who could forget the Chicago’s legend Louis Armstrong and his boisterous personality and ties to match? Louis’ ties were as colorful and eccentric as his personality and his soulful trumpet playing. There was rarely an actor back then whom you would see without a tie or a bow-tie.

As time passed and foreigners came to the Land of Opportunity, the trends in tie wearing also changed. The style of the suits men wore changed and the tie’s size reduced a little to fit right under the shortened length of the jacket. Then came the war and the Mafia. Now they might be criminals but they were stylish criminals and they brought the striped ties fashion with them. Striped ties became the red carpet trend as well as it is rumored that Hollywood actors had ties with the Mafia. Those were the time when girls swooned over the eclectic style of Frank Sinatra and Mr. Sinatra always performed with a tie on.

Then James Bond revolutionized the world of ties and actors started to wear ties that blended with their outfits. Bow ties were made a customary formal dressing accessory. The tuxedo became the ‘it factor’ in Hollywood and there was no one better to carry off that bow tie that Sir Sean Connery. Sir Sean Connery is the most famous actor to play Bond and his iconic style defined men’s clothing and their need to wear ties as well.

Skinny Ties

By the time we stepped into the 21st century, the trend of being skinny also came in demand and ties went skinny as well. Skinny ties went universal. Everyone is wearing them from kids to teenager to adults. We have seen the ties thinning down on the red carpet as well. Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Benedict Cumberbatch, Eddie Redmayne; all of these actors and more, wore skinny ties when they came to receive their awards on stage. Skinny ties are in vogue but as style revolutionizes we will look to the carpet once more to see what new trends come in the world of neckties.

Ties are a big factor when it comes to making style statement. A tie adds to the class of an outfit. If you like to dress to impress, load up on a variety of ties today!

5 Reasons Why a Paisley Tie is a Must Have in your Tie Collection

Paisley Necktie

Paisley Neckties are classy and fashionable

Wearing solid or stripped ties everyday can be like a never ending biological rhythm. Since 2016 is here, maybe it’s time you made some changes in your wardrobe. A slight change can be seen in men’s fashion trends from runways to ready-to-wear stores. Patterns, layering, contrast and floral prints are back this spring season. So while the whole majority of early adopters run wild, let me tell you more about a paisley tie.

History behind the Paisley Trend

Although the paisley pattern dates back to early Persian, the term was coined in Early Britain. The real deal of paisley ties began when the Beatles let this hip trend roll. From coordinated and matching suits to hip, rebellious teens, all preferred paisley as their go to style. The bold patterns and the flashy prints brought out the golden era for Paisley ties.

Why It’s a Must Have:

Brings Out The Muted Colors – If you like being sophisticated and prefer a classic style wardrobe then in order to give you a pop of color, paisley can be the best option. Now create a flamboyant, yet an office wear worthy attire through a decent toned paisley tie.

Two Colors Are All You Need – Tired of your whole looking like its ready to taste a rainbow? Opt for just a tie that has a perfect touch of color. With foulard ties being the biggest hit of this season, you will be in style and the best dressed in your workplace.

Adds An Edge To Your Style – So you are a subscriber of GQ, own a complete set of style magazines dating back to the 70s but you don’t have a paisley? That’s impossible. In order to diversify your wardrobe and make it better adaptable to a variety of seasons then paisley tie is your best friend.

Perfect Neck Tie For Business Purposes – So your job requires you to travel a lot and the least thing you want is to look bored and jet lagged. The best tie to opt for these kind of situations is a paisley tie. Pick the right colors and build on them that way you will not only have a fancy collection of go to style attire but you will not get bored of wearing them.

Mix and Match – The best thing about owning a paisley is that it can go with anything you own. That plain, gray suit of yours can go well with a bold paisley which will give it a cool tone. If you have a navy or black suit, a patterned and colorful paisley tie will work best with it.

Most men don’t opt for a paisley because it is very overwhelming. What they don’t understand is that they don’t quite know how to pair them right. Wearing a paisley does not make you enter a Vegas nightclub territory, it makes you stand out with your own significance. A tie is that part of your clothing that is more exposed than your shirt, so having an appropriated, well matched tie is a must for any wardrobe.

Being a member of the Spiffster Club means you’ll get paisley ties in your collection. Just make sure you let us know in your profile survey. If you’re not a member, what are you waiting for? Sign up now with promo code WINTERSTYLE before the end of February!

What is the Van Wijk Necktie Knot?

Features: Not symmetrical, somewhat difficult to tie, uses a lot of fabric, and works well with brighter colors so the knot gets accented.

Van Wijk Necktie Knot

Van Wijk Necktie Knot

Want to sport a knot that was created by an actual artist? Lisa Van Wijk created this knot to invent the tallest knot possible. The Van Wijk knot is essentially a variation from the Prince Albert knot, except for the third loop around the base. The slender knot creates an unique layered cylindrical effect. Although it is visually striking, it does not do too much to distract so it can be worn even in more formal settings. If you’re getting tired of the common “V” knots, the Van Wijk might breathe fresh air into your tie arsenal.

Due to its slanted cylindrical effect, the knot is asymmetrical. The cylinders create a multilayered appearance that looks irregular, yet creates a striking look. Anyone who wears such a knot may seem to score more points in the adventurous and daring category. To attract attention (and perhaps, get noticed by the darling from across the room), make sure to wear a solid, bright tie. is giving away a free tie with promo code “FREETIE” till the end of this month!

We suggest wearing the Van Wijk knot in less formal occasions. If you are itching to try something different in a more formal occasion, you can make the knot tighter. That way it will bode well as long as you’ve given your entire outfit some thought. This knot works best for thinner men, and wearing a vest might help accentuate the knot. So what are you waiting for? Try this knot out now!

How to tie the Van Wijk Necktie Knot:

The Origins and All We Know About The Four-In-Hand Necktie

Terracotta soldiers sporting neckties

Terracotta soldiers sporting neckties

Arguably the most popular and most widely used neck tie knot is the four in hand knot. Its popularity lies in its elegant design and the element of class it adds to the person wearing a four in hand knot. There’s a lot to know about one of the oldest tie knots in our history.

Unfortunately, it cannot be exactly pointed towards a time when the use of a four in hand tie knot began. However, use of the four in hand knot in different wear goes right down to ancient Chinese age. Neck scarves on the statues of the famous terra cotta army soldiers, were found to be worn in a four in hand knot. It is believed that the four in hand was worn, as it was believed to channel power.

Use of the four in hand knot can also be found in the Roman era. Roman soldiers used to wear ribbons in the four in hand knot form, for the purpose of identifying themselves in battlefield. However, the decorative use of the four in hand started mainly from the Croatian soldiers.

After the victory of Croatia and its ally in the war against Turkey in 1636, the Croatian soldiers wore colorful scarves on their necks tied in the four in hand knot, while celebrating their victory in Paris. This was very well received and gradually took the shape of fashion.

Modern Origin Of Four In Hand Knot

The birth of modern neck tie took place in the industrial revolution era. The urge to look presentable was at its peak, as everyone wanted to look outstanding. The trend of neck ties gained popularity here as it was easy to wear and added a great amount of class to the attire.

With the popularity in the neck tie trend, the need for an easy yet elegant knot was imminent. This is where the four in hand tie knot gained massive popularity.

Origin Of The Name- Four In Hand

The name four in hand was derived from the four horse carriage. The knot has a resemblance with the reins of the carriage, thus the origin of the name four in hand.

Another theory links to the famous, London gentleman’s club, Four In Hand’s adaption of this knot. They made it fashionable, and the name is thought to be linked to the club.

Four in Hand Knot- A Closer Look

In today’s age, there are too many styles and variations of knots available to choose from. A gentleman should know how to choose the popular Four In Hand tie knot. Its characteristic feature is that when tied, it takes the shape of a small yet asymmetrical knot. The knot has a resemblance to the alphabet “V”.

The Four In Hand is essentially one of the most ancient knots to be used in neck-wear. The great thing about it is that it can be worn to a great deal of occasions. So, here you have a great deal of information related to the origins and more about the Four In Hand tie knot.

Here’s a video brought to you by Howcast that teaches you how to tie the Four in Hand Knot. If you’d like a free necktie, is giving away a free tie with promo code “FREETIE” till the end of this month!

The Written History of the Windsor Knot

Duke of Windsor sporting the Windsor Knot

Duke of Windsor

The Windsor Knot was a knot sported by the Duke of Windsor and his Grandfather King Edward VII. You could say the Duke of Windsor was considered a very polarizing figure and could influence the citizens from across the pond. During his visits to the United States, he often wore his neckties with a triangular knot at the top. His style quickly spread throughout the United States, as the look was considered more casual and relaxed. More than seventy years later, it’s still one of the most popular variation of how men sport their neckties.

Even though it was made popular by King George VII, the Duke of Windsor was the one who popularized it. What makes the knot popular today? It produces an even wide symmetrical triangular knot. It creates a wider knot even with ties created with normal thickness cloth.

This knot is also very comfortable to wear, as the knot is very stable and well-balanced. Its large knot also helps keep the throat warm when being exposed to colder weather. It also helps distract attention from the wearer’s face, so it complements people with much facial hair.

What’s the difference between the Windsor knot and the Half-Windsor knot? The Windsor Knot is typically used on a larger man with nice thick ties, while the Half-Windsor knot is made for sleek, tall, fit man with sleeker fabric. So if you are wearing a shirt collar that is choking you at the top, a nice Windsor knot helps cover that area. Remember, if you choose to wear the Windsor Knot, try and use a tie with longer material.

The Windsor Knot helps emphasize a classic look for males that sport it to gain the confidence in any situation.

Don’t know how to tie the Windsor Knot? The instructions for tying a Windsor knot are shown in the following YouTube video by Howcast below.

The History of Neckties

Neckties are a common gift choice for men of all ages. Billions are spent on neckties every year. They have been used for different purposes. Neckties sow your social status and occupation and also your own identity. Also, neckwear has utilitarian purposes which protects the neck or even helps in hiding the buttons of the shirt.

Purpose Of Neckties

Neckties have been a part of men’s attire in different forms and from different ages. The ancient Egyptians used to wear a rectangular piece of cloth from the start. The closest form of the current day necktie has been seen by people in the Thirty Year War. Neckties depict your social status and is used for plain fashion purposes as well. It is used in different forms, sizes and shapes.

Neckties are a purely decorative accessory. It does not really keep you warm or dry but it doesn’t add to the comfort either. Neckties originated in the 17th century during the 30 year war in France. Initially, Croatian mercenaries were hired by King Louis XIII who wore this as a piece of cloth around their neck as a part of uniform. The necktie was seen as a decorative effect but they were later shown as a mandatory accessory for royal gatherings. Neckties initially came up during the 1900s and have evolved till 2013. In the 1900s, the tie was considered to be a must have clothing accessory for men during the 1st decade of the 20th century. The most common ones during that time were Cravats but they evolved from the early 17th century ties. After 20 years, a four in hand knot was invented. Even though there have been an evolution of other tie knots, the four in and is one of the most famous tie knots. Other tie knots during that time were bow ties and ascots.

Emergence Of Neckties

Between 1910-1919, neck ties started resembling the ties we see today as they evolved overtime. Moreover, between 1920-1929, neck ties became a good choice for men as bow ties were reserved for black tie functions. However after a time, neckties emerged as British regimental ties. Moreover, in between 1930-39 and 1940-49, neckties became wider and were seen in many patterns and designs. In the 49s, neckties took different form and shape and they became a collection of differently shaped and designed accessories. Moreover, in 1950-59, there was an emergence of skinny ties and these ties were then created to form a more fitting and tailored clothing. Neckties then became something that tie makers started experimenting with. Between 1960-69, there was a huge change in neckties and some of the widest neckties were created. A new necktie by the name of Kipper Tie came in. Between 1970-79, 2000-2009 and 2010-2013, neckties emerged with great vigor. Neckties became thinner in 2000-2009 with a range of 3.5-3.75 inches. The sizes were shrunk further between 2010-2013 and the ties now have different widths, cuts and fabrics. Now neckties range between 2.75-3 inch wide and the knitted ties come in different weaves, unique fabrics, width and patterns.

Neckties have massively evolved overtime. They are a great piece of accessory and they and are worn by all over the world. The average price for a necktie at a retail store is $34. Because it’s so pricey, a collection of neckties is typically obtained after many years of shopping. Yet for $8.95 per month, you are able to get a fresh tie made from premium materials such as silk, linen, and wool each month from Spiffster. What makes it extremely convenient is that the ties are chosen by our fashion enthusiasts and are delivered right to your doorstep! To take advantage of this offer, subscribe to the Spiffster necktie subscription box here.