Most likely many of you have asked yourself why men wear ties. Today, this men’s accessory serves a purely decorative purpose but this was not always the case. Scarves that were tied on the neck, or the great ancestor of the modern tie, were worn by the soldiers of the Terracotta Army of Emperor Qin Shi Huang back in the 3rd century.
The origins of the name
When in 1660, the King of France, Louis XIV, made a review of his army, his attention was drawn by the colourful, silk scarves worn by the Croatian mercenaries. TheKing took such a liking to them that he dubbed the regiment the Royal Cravattes. It was a clear reference to the word Croate that spoken sounds very similar to cravatte in French. The fashion for wearing scarves thus began and Louis XIV actually had a dedicated aide called the cravatier whose only role was to care for the royal ties.
Tying the tie
There are many different tie knots and an elegant man should know at least a number of them. The most popular knots (in my opinion) is the Windsor knot, the four in hand knot and the Prince Albert knot. The first is usually chosen by politicians but it does not always look good on them as the Windsor knot befits primarily long and lean necks, and politicians rarely can boast such great-looking necks 😉 My personal favourite is the four in hand knot.
No Tie Day
Among the less typical special days in the year is the “No Tie Day”. It is celebrated on 2 June so if you work in an environment that requires you to wear a tie, on 2 June you can leave the tie at home.
The evolution of ties
For a long time, the male scarf did not change much. But in the 20thcentury time accelerated and brought about the evolution of the tie. At the beginning of the century, it already looked somewhat similar to the tie as we know it today, but it was much shorter. This was caused by how trousers were worn at the time. Today, ties are approx. 140 cm long and 7-9 cm wide.
The world’s best ties
There is an abundance of tie brands on the market so there is a wide selection of them but there are a few brands that are worth remembering so that you can buy one or two ties when the opportunity arises. These brands include Turnbull & Asser (a tie costs from PLN 600, Winston Churchill, George Bush and Ronald Reagan used to wear their ties), E. Marinella (luxurious ties with prices over PLN 1,000) and Passaggio Cravatte (one of the few places in the world where they can tie the seven-fold tie, or the most prestigious and most expensive tie ever).