Posted by Max DeGrom On April 27, 2016
Spilling something on your favorite tie is almost as painful as the time I thought using bleach on all my clothes was a good idea. Ended up with white blotches on nearly all my favorite shirts and pants. RIP, my favorite dark gray shirt. I say “almost” because there are ways to clean your tie. It’s not hopeless! So stop regretting (unless you bleached your clothes–then you can weep) and learn to clean your tie easily with the three simple tips!
1. Oil Stain
This stain is probably among the most common ones. Sometimes you get some grease on your hands, and you accidentally get it on your tie. No worries, though. Simply rub the stain with a paper towel, as much as possible to get out the oil deposit. Then you’ll need to spread corn starch directly on to the stain, and let it absorb the oil overnight. Brush it off in the morning, and voila! It’s gone!
2. Food Stain
Another common evil, from the villainous world of stains. Being careless sometimes myself, I’ve gotten my tie in a bowl a soup, on my burger and fries, and even on some chow fun noodles. Ah, if only I remember to tuck in my tie every time to I go out to eat. It’s just that sometimes I don’t have the energy from a tough day of work. But no worries, I’ve mastered the art of cleaning a stained tie. Here’s what you’ll need to do:
First, do not attempt to wipe it off with your hands. Use a butter knife, so that you don’t dab it into the fabric. Take a napkin and soak it in club soda. Now gently dab the napkin on to the stain. Then you must dry the fabric afterwards, to avoid and residual liquid stains.
The same technique will also prove useful against sauce stains. Sauces usually splash and may end up on your tie. No worries, now you’ll know how to fix it when the problem arises.
Now there are different types of wines, which require different types of treatment. So, let’s start with how to treat a red wine stain.
If you’ve got a red wine stain, you should treat it with table salt. Be generous and spread the salt out evenly on the stain. The salt will soak all the wine and you will be able to clean off the stain.
For White wine, you should simply head to the washroom and dry the tie under the hand-dryer. It may remove the stain completely, if not, you can take the tie to the dry-cleaning shop.
4. Coffee, Cola etc.
Now these are common stains as well. For stains occurring from cola drinks, coffee or any other liquors with amber color, you may dab it with a napkin dipped in club soda and liquid soap. Just use the regular soap from your home. Proceed to dry the tie. That should do the trick!
Cleaning off your tie stains is one thing, but taking proper care of your tie is also imperative. When you head in after a tough day at work, don’t just grab and pull your tie off. You may ruin the tie’s fabric and its shape. Wash your hands, take off the tie properly and hang it in a suited place. You should consider visiting the dry-cleaning place once or twice a month for your ties. Remember, a true Spiffster keeps his ties in tip-top shape!
Posted by Max DeGrom On April 11, 2016
A shirt defines a lot about the person wearing it. If you want to have a good look, you will need to keep your shirts ironed. When you wear a wrinkled shirt, it tells others people that you don’t care how you look and you are too lazy to iron your shirt. A crisp shirt gives a nice impression on others. Of course, you will want to look well-groomed, composed and clean. Operating an iron is not much of an effort and it’s pretty simple. And you don’t own endless number of shirts either so you are left with the option of ironing. There are a number of ways to iron a shirt but I have put a simple method for you step by step. You are going to make your mom proud.
STEP 1: GET THE RIGHT PLACE AND EQUIPMENT
The first thing you need is an iron. You will be requiring an ironing board and a balanced surface to place it. The area where you are going to iron should be well-lighted and clean. The level of ironing board should be waist level for you. Get a spray bottle with water in it. Setup the ironing board in a comfortable place. Check the fabric of the shirt as different fabrics require different amount of heats. Spread the shirt on the ironing board, making sure you don’t wrinkle it all over again. Now plug the iron and set it up its hottest level initially.
STEP 2: SPRAY THE SHIRT
You have the shirt on ironing board, spread it properly, unbutton it and spray water on it to get the wrinkles out.
STEP 3: COLLAR
Start ironing the back of the collar of shirt and move from one end to other by applying moderate pressure.
STEP 4: BACK OF SHIRT
Place the shirt with the back facing the ironing board. The shirt should be placed flat to avoid creases and it makes the ironing process easier too. Slide the iron with moderate pressure from bottom to top. Slide the shirt over once you have ironed one side of it and then work on the other side just the same.
STEP 5: SLEEVES
Flatten the sleeves with your hands and start ironing from cuff moving to shoulder. You can iron on the top of the sleeve with a crease. Repeat the same with the other sleeve.
STEP 6: BUTTONS
You have to iron around the buttons carefully and gently so that the threads holding them are not disturbed.
STEP 7: FRONT OF SHIRT
Place the shirt so that the front is on top of ironing board. Iron from left or right side and then go to the other side. Iron around the sides of the pocket of the shirts to the center. Make sure to take your time to avoid any mistakes and harm. You don’t want to have a hole in your shirt.
You can now wear the shirt of hang it. Remember, an ironed shirt is always pleasant to wear and will give you a good look and make you approachable.
Posted by Jackie Mark On March 25, 2016
Some of the best weapons in a gentleman’s wardrobe are his collection of ties. However, like any weapon not handled correctly, neckties also have the potential to destroy a man by ruining his image and we all know how important images are, after all ‘first impression is the last impression’ isn’t said for nothing. Even though no one admits it but a large majority of us has difficulties in matching the suit and necktie pairs. Often we take the easier route and select a random tie with our expensive suits which, instead of helping us, totally ruins the impact we had planned to make.
The Basic One
There are many variants of shirts and neckties but the simplest of both of these will be ones which have no patterns or, in other words, a solid shirt and a solid tie. This is the safest combination you can ever have. The basic rule of thumb is to always pair a dark colored tie with a less dark colored shirt. Never wear a dark shirt with a light necktie. To improve this plain look, people often use contrasting colors which are a time-tested way of doing it but one other way to do it is to use a different shade of the same color, for example, you can pair a light blue shirt with a dark tie. This gives a very classy effect.
Going one step further, we land in the territory of mixed combinations. In mixed combinations, either the shirt has a pattern and the tie is solid or the tie has a pattern and the shirt is solid. A simple rule applies to both types of combinations. For a shirt with the pattern, you can select any color from the pattern of the shirt (as long as it is darker than the overall look of the shirt) for your tie. The same principle applies to the reverse combination, you can pick any color from the pattern of your tie.
The Ultimate Look
One to the trickiest looks to pull off is wearing a pattern on a pattern but this is what separates the novices from the masters. Although this look may need some practice to achieve perfection but the rewards are very satisfying. There are some simple things you need to keep in mind before you decide to wear a pattern on a pattern.
The basic thing to take care is that the patterns on your shirt shouldn’t match the pattern of your ties, for example, you wouldn’t pair polka dots with dots on your shirt too.
The next thing to keep in mind is to vary the size of patterns between your shirt and tie. Generally, the patterns on your tie should be bolder and larger than the ones on your shirt.
Lastly, it looks very sleek if you match the color of patterns in your tie with the major color in your shirt.
These are the basic tips which can help you in matching your neckties with suits, it is assumed that your jacket is darker than your shirt. These tips may not help you win that lucrative deal but they’ll definitely empower you to have the confidence to try and give your best shot.
Posted by Max DeGrom On March 14, 2016
If you have been called in for an interview, this means that you have been given an opportunity to show what you are capable of. It means that you have the chance and a platform to present your viewpoint, to a certain number of people. However, mere knowledge, creativity and talent is not enough to go through an interview session successfully. You need to equip yourself with the ideal attire to impress your interviewers.
One of the major aspects of an ideal attire is the perfect necktie. However, most of the people, going for an interview, are not properly familiar with the importance of a necktie and which necktie might be perfect for the interview. Moving on, let us talk about some of the major aspects related to the perfect necktie for an interview, starting with its importance.
Importance of Necktie in an Interview:
A necktie is a standard component of a man’s attire for a job interview. It holds a lot of importance when you are talking about impressing the people taking your interview. You chances of landing on a job depends on whether the interviewers find you impressive enough. To ensure this, you have to well prepared in all the basic area. A tie catches the direct attention of your interviewers. Hence, whether you impress your interviewers with your necktie, or annoy them, depends on you.
Colors to Wear:
Dark Colors: Dark colors can show your powerful character to the interviewers and help you create a strong foundation.
Burgundy Color: Burgundy color can show your maturity and a strong mindset, which can be a huge factor for your interviewers to consider you for the job.
Bright Colors: Bright colors can show your creativity and enthusiasm to the people taking your interview. However, make sure that the colors are not too flashy.
Colors to Avoid: When going for an interview, the sparky and flashy colors of a necktie are a big no! Black, silver, white and any colors which might annoy your interviewers should be avoided, when going for an interview.
Patterns to Wear:
Stripes: Stripes are a major symbol of power and sophistication. This will denote your strong character to the interviewers.
Paisleys: If you want to show your traditional classicism to the interviewers, a necktie with paisley patterns would be a great attempt at it. This will be a great way to show your maturity to the people taking your interview.
Geometric patterns: Geometric patterns show that you are a creative person. If you are going for an interview for a creativity-based job, geometric patterns are an option worth considering.
Plain: Reflecting your style and demeanor can be easy if you are looking forward to wearing a solid patterned necktie on your interview day.
Patterns to Avoid:
One of the mistakes people might make when choosing the pattern for their neckties is choosing a necktie with logos etc. This might set of your interviewers enough to reject your job application. Hence, avoid wearing neckties with logs, for example, cartoons.
The bottom line is that a necktie is one of the most important parts of your attire for an interview. It can either make or break your chances of impressing your interviewers and the opportunity to get a job in this recession driven world!
Posted by Max DeGrom On March 2, 2016
Skinny ties first became popular in the 1920s amidst a post-war climate that encouraged cost-cutting. It then made a comeback in the 1950’s, through pop icons like the Beatles and the Rat Pack – a style designed to complement fitted and tailored clothes of the time. However, in the 1970s, Elvis Presley sported thick ties making that design more stylish and the skinny ties were no longer the sought after fashion of the time. In the 1980s, skinny ties partially made an appearance, but, it wasn’t until recently that the skinny tie really made its mark in the fashion world. Moreover, Christian Dior launched the “New Look” – of “a narrow silhouette” – for gentlemen, bringing the slim, somber “conservative” ties back into fashion.
The general consensus is that skinny ties look best on men that have a tall and thin built (If Chris Pratt or Tom Hardy – in his Bane days- were to wear it, their built would over power the look).
The retro look of narrow neckties is a sought after look by young and fashion oriented men. This group of men wears the skinny tie combined with jeans, and a dress shirt with rolled up sleeves and an open top collar. A skinny tie can be paired with slim suits that are perfectly tailored to the thinner frame. These ties are gaining popularity amongst celebrities and a look at the fashion and entertainment industry will show how the skinny tie is the rage. From red carpet events, to photo shoots or even after parties, celebrities and fashionistas can be spotted wearing the skinny tie. Even among musicians, skinny ties are popular and are regularly incorporated into their attire. Skinny ties aren’t restricted to a certain genre of music. Bands such as “My Chemical Romance” as well as pop music stars like Justin Timberlake, all support the skinny tie – it is everywhere.
Thanks to the various industries, the skinny tie is now a part of the ever growing diverse fashion.
Skinny ties are not just restricted to men’s fashion. Popular fashion designers have started to incorporate skinny ties into women’s fashion providing the image of a new modern woman. Women’s collection all over the world now feature skinny ties, although the length is slightly shorter than that of men and the colors are even more brighter and better.
However, it is probably safe and acceptable to wear a skinny tie to a work place if one works in a relaxed, creative environment. For businesses such as investment banks or law firms, the skinny neck tie is unsuited and will probably be frowned upon and seen as irresponsible and non-serious.
For a more generic black-tie event, stay away from the skinny tie and opt instead for a tuxedo and white pocket square. Follow the celebrities and the elite of fashion and choose solid black neckties made from fine silk.
Posted by Max DeGrom On February 24, 2016
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.
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:
Posted by Max DeGrom On January 28, 2016
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.
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.
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!
Posted by Max DeGrom On January 23, 2016
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!
Posted by Jackie Mark On January 21, 2016
Features: Not symmetrical, somewhat difficult to tie, uses a lot of fabric, and works well with brighter colors so the knot gets accented.
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.
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:
Posted by Jackie Mark On January 11, 2016
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, Spiffster.club is giving away a free tie with promo code “FREETIE” till the end of this month!