14 Necktie Types and How to Distinguish Them

Every man should have at least a few neckties on their wardrobe. It’s important for some formal attires, such as when there are corporate events you need to attend. Plus, some types of neckties just make a good statement piece for simple clothes.

Here are different types of neckties, and how you can tell them apart. If you also want to know the interesting history of neckties, we got you!

The Anatomy of Ties

shot of a pair of shoes and pre-tied necktie on wooden surface

Typically, neckties measure 3.5 to 3.75 inches broad by 52 to 58 inches in length. Ties are typically crafted from silk, although they may also be constructed of different materials. A necktie’s typical components are:

  • The fabric wrapped inside the folds of a tie is called the interlining. It determines the form, mass, and weight of a necktie.
  • The Envelope: This is the shell of the necktie. It’s the tie’s outermost fabric.
  • The neck is the middle piece of a necktie.
  • The Seam is roughly halfway down the length. Ties are often made up of three to four distinct pieces of cloth sewed together. Their stitching’s focal point is the seam.
  • The Rolled Edge: A necktie’s edge is rolled to give it fullness.
  • The Bar Tack is a thick thread that connects the two sides of the necktie. It also keeps the necktie’s form.
  • The tail is the tie’s small end that hangs behind the bigger end after it is tied.
  • The Margin: The region between the edge of the tie blade and the tipping is known as the margin.
  • The Blade is the tie’s primary, broad bottom section.
  • The cloth sewn beneath the tip and tail of the tie is referred to as the tipping.
  • The Slip Stitch is a single stitch that spans the length of a necktie to keep the two overlapping sides together.
  • The Hem is a decorative thread that connects the shell to the tipping.

Types of Neckties

Apron Necktie

Fortunatever Classical Men's Solid Handmade Extra Long Necktie,Black Tie With Gift Box

The most prevalent necktie is the apron necktie. It’s a long, pointed piece of fabric with one end that’s wider and broader than the other. The tie may be knotted in a variety of ways, some of which are more frequent or appropriate in formal situations than others. The Windsor, which is also known as the Half-Windsor knot, was popularized by the Duke of Windsor in the 1920s, thus the name, as well as the Persian knot, aka the plain four-in-hand knot, are just a couple of the most popular patterns. Apron neckties are frequently used with formal suits and come in a variety of forms and sizes.

 Bow Tie

groom wearing gray suit and light grey bowtie

Bow ties are symmetrical ties that are smaller than regular neckties. They are thin in the center and broad on both ends. They’re tied into bows with a little knot in the center. They are worn for formal meals, ceremonies, and festivities. They’re most often seen with tuxedos.

The bowtie is a playful choice and may be worn on a number of occasions, including galas, balls, and cocktail parties. In the South, it might be worn with a seersucker suit.

Western Bow Tie

Western bow ties are a variant of the traditional bow tie. In the southwest, they are fairly popular. Other places, on the other hand, may find it excessively informal and unsuitable for formal or official attire.


Barry.Wang Red Silk Cravat Pocket Square Set for Men Paisley Ascot Tie Cufflinks Set

An Ascot tie is worn over an undershirt and under the dress shirt. It is knotted multiple times and covers a large amount of the neckline below the chin. It’s looped around and a scarf pin is used to secure it. Ascot ties are more colorful than Apron neckties. With that, they are more considered luxury clothing, not appropriate for the workplace.

Cravat Ties

Historical Emporium Men's Satin Regal Cravat Black

A cravat is a type of tie that predates the current bowtie and necktie. It was passed down through the military from individuals who wore it throughout the seventeenth century. It’s more of a neckband than a tie, and it wraps around the whole neck. It’s constructed of a material that may be wrapped around the neck or tied into a bowtie. The Cravat, on the other hand, was normally kept simple and worn as an adornment or a symbol of richness rather than a formal uniform. It was only accessible to monarchs and generals. It resembles the Ascot in appearance.

Clip-on Tie

Mens Clip on Ties Solid Uniform Clip-on Neck Ties for Police and Security Pullaway Clip Ties (Black)

A clip-on tie is a pre-tied necktie or bowtie with a hook or clip to connect it to your shirt collar. If you don’t want to go to the trouble of dressing up and tying the perfect knot, this is the tie for you. Bowties may have a hook and eye closure around the neck.

Many individuals use clip-on ties because the traditional necktie bothers them, while others wear them out of necessity since they are unable to knot ties properly. They are also worn by certain disabled persons for comfort. Some security officers find it difficult to put on a necktie and prefer to use a clip-on instead.

Sailor Tie

The sailor tie evolved from sailors’ custom of tying their scarves or handkerchiefs in a knot. It’s a diagonally folded scarf or black silk handkerchief worn beneath the sailor’s collar. It’s either knotted in a sailor knot or turned into a blouse strap. Although it is not a prerequisite of the sailor costume, it has been associated with sailors as a result of its frequent use in musicals, ads, and cartoons.

Bolo/Bola Tie

close up of cowboy bolo tie with horse design

The Bolo/Bola tie is a type of necktie composed of braided leather or rope with metal points at both ends. It is generally secured with a plastic or metal clasp. It may also be tied in a knot under the collar to hide the button. These ties are frequently considered jewels and come with high-end clasps and pins. Bottle openers, refrigerator magnets, precious coins, clips, and other objects may be used to make bola ties. They are often thought of as an informal or casual garment that should be worn during joyful events rather than formal meetings.

Since the 1940s, when the Bola tie was invented, the stigma associated with wearing it at formal events has faded, and it is now regarded as more or less formal clothing. It became rather trendy in the 1970s after becoming the official neckwear of Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas in 1971. The latter two have also passed legislation making the neckwear legal in their respective jurisdictions. They’ve been worn by baby boomers who like gold panning, and they’ve even become work-appropriate in the United States’ northwestern states.

String Tie

Allegra K Women's Pre-Tied Adjustable String Bow Tie Solid Color Uniform Bowties One Size Black

The string tie is a black necktie with a width of less than one inch. It’s worn like a bow tie, but the opposing ends of the tie are left dangling considerably lower, sometimes even to the suit’s lapel. It’s also known as the Southern Colonel tie, Sherriff’s tie, and Bootlace tie. The kind of bowtie worn by Colonel Sanders, the original inventor of the fried chicken dish, is most famously seen in the KFC logo.

Seven-Fold Tie

JEMYGINS Green Formal Necktie and Pocket Square, Hankerchief and Tie Bar Clip Sets for Men

A Seven-Fold tie is an extremely thin, unlined tie created from an outer cloth folded seven times. Under some circumstances, it may even go above seven folds. This is why no lining is required; it has an unusually thick finish and feel when compared to a standard tie.

The seven-fold tie is a time-consuming item of apparel to create, taking three and a half hours. It’s an unusual tie since it’s so thick and requires so much fabric and labor to manufacture.

Skinny Tie

DAZI Men's Skinny Tie Floral Print Cotton Necktie, Great for Weddings, Groom, Groomsmen, Missions, Dances, Gifts. (Palm)

A skinny tie is a necktie with a narrower main end than typical. It’s around 1.5 to 2.5 inches wide instead of the full 4 to 4.5 inches that a standard tie front end is. Skinny neckwear is quite stylish for informal situations, however, it is not appropriate for professional occasions or business settings. Skinny ties are associated with hipster culture and do not fit into more classic or conventional dress settings.

Slim or slim ties are more often associated with new-age style and fashion than with traditional necktie sensibility. Wearing a narrow tie to a law firm interview or a business meeting is inappropriate. Wearing a slim tie to a press junket, a product launch, or a party after an awards event, on the other hand, is far more acceptable and trendy.

The slender necktie gained popularity in the 1950s and 1960s when bands like The Beatles started wearing them on stage. They created a stir, and young lads trying to impress female observers started to imitate the appearance.

For a trendy but edgy style, skinny ties may also be used with jeans. That appearance isn’t for everyone, so be cautious.

Kipper Tie

Art Deco Bridge Over Necktie -Vintage 1970's Jacquard Weave Wide Kipper Tie - Navy Blue

The Kipper tie has a broad one end and a narrow one end. The tie is frequently made to be aesthetically striking, with bright colors and patterns. During the 1940s, these neckties were popular and trendy, and they were regarded as part of a bold appearance worn by World War II veterans. They were also seen as protests against the austerity measures imposed during the conflict.

Kipper ties made a reappearance in the 1960s and 1970s, and designer Michael Fish of Piccadilly Circus created a Kipper Tie in 1966. It was also a hit in the mid-1990s when 1970s fashion made a comeback.

Up Cycle Fashion Neckwear

Dona Bela Shreds Lightweight Womens Scarf, Upcycled Statement Neckwear - Unique Fashion Roxie Shred (Blue, Navy)

Women use up cycle trend neckwear, which is generally more beautiful and colorful than conventional men’s ties. It’s frequently composed of a variety of fabrics and embellished with various patterns and styles. It generally features leather, stone, or button embellishments and is tied to the traditional method. Other sorts of knots may be used to represent the season or the colors you’re attempting to match, but most upcycle fashion neckwear is worn in a classic manner.

This kind of neckwear grew popular in the 1960s and 1970s, and it became part of the standard working uniform for women, particularly secretaries and stenographers. Today’s neckwear is mainly made of recycled fabric and comes in a range of styles and patterns to match the season and the newest trends. Women still wear them over shirts, blouses, and pantsuits. They come in a variety of colors and are sometimes considered luxury products.

Hunting Stock Ties

Equestrians use hunting stock ties while riding in a show ring hunt field. Folding them over once to fill the neckline of a jacket is how they’re worn. Decorative pins are used to connect the two ends.


unknown blonde woman wearing white neckerchief

In terms of neckwear, the neckerchief is often disregarded. It’s just a scarf or handkerchief wrapped around your neck in a different way. Unlike the sailor’s tie, this may be fashioned with a homemade handkerchief or scarf and is worn by men of many professions and walks of life. It may be tied in a classic knot or left free.

It is often used as an embellishment to casual clothing during informal parties. As a result, wearing it as part of formal attire is inappropriate. It’s also used as an identifier by boy scouts and rangers.

The History of Neckties

man wearing brown suit with brown necktie

Neckties were first used in the 17th century in France during a 30-year civil war. King Louis XIII engaged Croatian troops to fight in this conflict. As part of their uniform, these troops wore a piece of fabric tied around their necks. This material was used to tie around the troops’ coats back then. The ornament was so popular with King Louis XIII that he made it a requirement for all Royal occasions. In honor of Croatian troops, he dubbed these neckpieces La Cravate.

Neckties have experienced several modifications since the 17th century. We’ve broken down the history of ties by decade to help you better understand how they came to be.


Neckties were a required piece of attire for males between 1900 and 1909. Cravats were the most popular necktie. The distinction was in the manner in which the cravat was fastened. The four-in-hand knot, which is still the most frequent style of tie knot today, was devised two decades before the turn of the century. During this period, bow ties and ascots were also quite fashionable.


During the years 1910-1919, men’s fashion grew more informal. Comfort, fit, and practicality of the clothing were given more weight. The ties began to resemble the ties used now towards the end of this decade.


During the years 1920-1929, men’s ties saw a dramatic transformation. New York tie producers began cutting fabric for ties in a different method, allowing the tie to bounce back to its original form after each use. Many new knots arose as a result of this evolution. Bow ties were restricted and designated for formal nights and black-tie gatherings, therefore ties became a popular option for many individuals.


Neckties got larger and more boldly patterned throughout this time period, and they were worn a little shorter than they are now.


During the early 1940s, neckties did not undergo any significant changes. Neckties were fashionable after World War II ended. Fashion reflected this feeling of emancipation. Colors and designs on the ties grew more vivid.


The slim ties first appeared and gained popularity throughout this decade, 1950-1959. This tie looked well with tailored and form-fitting outfits. Various types of ties were made available.


The Kipper Tie was born during this period when ties got unusually broad. The Bolo Tie was also invented during this time period. Later on, it was designated as Arizona’s official neckwear.

1980 – 1999

Necktie widths grew more uniform during this time. The paisley designs were strong.


Ties got thinner between 2000 and 2009, and skinny ties resurfaced in popularity.

2010 – Present

Ties are now available in a variety of widths and lengths as of 2010 and forward. It’s all about what you put on.

What Is The Purpose Of Wearing A Tie?

torso shot of a man wearing navy blue suit with necktie and flowers on pocket

The majority of males like to dress casually. The importance of ties is underestimated. Your total character and approach may be significantly influenced by your tie. The reasons for wearing a tie are listed below.

  • Honor, order, and nobility are all symbols of ties. Since their inception in the 17th century, they have been like this.
  • Ties make you appear nice first and foremost. Wearing a tie may elevate a simple outfit by several levels and make you seem more professional.
  • Ties give you a distinctive appearance.
  • Ties indicate a person’s aptitude. Even if you aren’t, ties make you seem educated and powerful. People will instantly regard you as having authority and influence if you wear a tie with confidence.
  • Wearing a tie shows that you have gone above and beyond. It demonstrates that you went above and beyond to make an impression. People will be pleased if they know you put effort into your appearance before meeting with them.
  • Professionalism is shown through ties. Someone dressed casually for an interview will make a very different impression than someone dressed professionally. Even if you work in a casual atmosphere, a tie may make a significant difference in your appearance.

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