Style Q&A: The Tie Bar

 

I recently bought a tie bar, it’s obviously to keep my tie in place but are there any specific rules to wearing it?

 

What’s obvious to one may be amazing to another! Just to clarify for those who have had the rare fortune of living a life completely outside of tying straps of fabric around your neck, the purpose of the tie bar is to clip the tie to the front of your shirt. And as with all longstanding sartorial traditions, there are a few rules to go with it.

Pin Precision For Your Tie Bar

We’ve seen tie bars erroneously used only to hold the two ends of the tie together, allowing it to continue flapping freely in the wind. If that’s your only agenda, there’s a little loop on the back of the wide blade of your tie for that. A properly placed tie bar should secure both blades of the tie to the front placket of your shirt. The sweet spot for pinning on the shirt is somewhere between the third and fourth buttons, or no higher than the top of your jacket’s breast pocket. The lower you go the more traditional. In the photo above, actor James Marsden nails it, while musician Gary Barlow looks like he’s begging for attention with such a high pin.

Size Matters

This is the same story you hear time and time again, about all your suiting being in proportion. A huge tie doesn’t go with a suit with skinny lapels, and likewise a huge tie bar doesn’t go with a skinny tie. A well sized tie bar is somewhere between half and 3/4 the width of your tie. Once again Mr. Marsden flexes his sartorial know-how, while poor Gary looks like he’s borrowing dad’s accessories.

Double Duty

Tie bars are a nice touch because they’re completely functional. Put one on and not only does it add some visual interest, it keeps you looking literally sharper as your collar, tie, and belt all stay aligned under your jacket. It’s nice to stay put together, but Gary Barlow slips up one last time by throwing a collar bar on top of it all. The double accessorizing is just too try-hard. It’s one thing to be kempt, but you don’t want to crucify your tie with all the bells and whistles. Moderation is key!

There’s no point in splurging on a nice tie bar unless you’ve got neckwear worth barring, so make sure to grab one of our handmade Italian weaves if your collection is lacking!

Donegal

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