Bow Ties or Neckties?

When to Wear What: Bow Ties Vs. Neckties

Are you confused about what piece of neckwear is better suited for what occasion? Do you prefer the look of neckties but are uncertain weather or not one would be suited for a particular event? Below is a helpful summary for basic dress code etiquette related to bow ties and neckties.

Formal Attire
Formal attire, or more specifically “black tie” attire will require you to wear a bow tie. Not just any bow tie will do, but the solid color black bow tie is the gold standard for traditional formal functions in combination with a black tuxedo.

“Warm Weather” Back Tie
As the name suggests, warm weather black tie refers to a formal function occurring during the day and in warm weather. Such functions are typically associated with open-air events. Formal weddings are a classic example. Just like standard black tie attire, warm weather black tie traditionally requires a bow tie. The black bow tie is still the preferred neckwear of choice. The tuxedo jacket is typically white instead of the traditional black.

“Black Tie” Optional
“Black Tie” optional dress code is also often referred to “semi-formal” attire. As the name suggests, tuxedo and bow tie is acceptable, but there is a trend of dressing down. If you like the look of the tuxedo, then wear a non-black, but sold color bow tie with it. If the event is during the day, and/or in warm weather, then lighter colored bow ties are an excellent choice.

If you don’t own a tuxedo, and do not want to rent one, then a dark gray or black 2-piece suit is also well suited for “Black Tie Optional” attire. Wear a white dress shirt, black shoes, and formal necktie with your 2-piece suit. The best neckties are solid color ties that are made from a smooth satin-silk. As a general rule: The darker the necktie, the more formal it will appear.

“Business” Attire
Depending on your industry and company culture, business attire can vary widely. Traditional business attire consists of 2-piece suit, dress shirt, and necktie. The most popular dress shirt colors are white, blue, gray, and even light pink. The most popular necktie colors are blue and burgundy red. Striped neckties are also very popular.

“Business Casual” Attire
Wear neither necktie or bow tie! “Business Casual” means that you should dress nice but not too formal. No full suit, and no neckwear is needed. Dress shoes, dress pants, and dress shirts on the other hand make up the basis for “Business Casual”. Stay away from tennis shoes, shorts, sandals, and jeans!

Larger Selection of Bow Ties

Larger Selection of Bow Ties Coming Soon!

Dear valued customer,

Over the last few weeks we have been working hard to expand our product selection for you. Among the new additions will be a much larger selection of fashionable bow ties. Currently we only feature solid color bow ties, but within the next week we will be adding fashionable polka dot bow ties, striped bow ties, and bow ties with intricate designs. In addition we will be featuring bow tie sets with matching pocket squares. As usual, to unbeatable low prices!

Please check back with us soon to see out larger selection of fashionable bow ties.

How to sew on a button

How to Sew on a Button on Your Dress Shirt

It is just a question of time before you will pop off a button on your dress shirt. Constant dry-cleaning, washing, and pressing your dress shirts in combination with opening and closing your shirt’s buttons hundreds of times causes stress on your shirts. Sooner or later a button will come loose and fall off.

The most convenient way to fix the missing button is by using your dry-cleaner. Next time you drop off your dress shirts that need to be pressed, point out the missing button. Sewing on a new button will only cost you a few dollars. If you are a regular customer, chances are that your cleaner will do this at no charge. Next time you pick up your dress shirts everything will be fixed and look like new.

There are times however when we don’t have this luxury. Take a business trip for instance: You typically only bring just enough dress shirts needed for the trip, and there is no dry cleaner near your hotel. What do you do if a button comes off right before you get dressed for an important business dinner? Don’t panic! Sewing on a button is much easier than you think and will only take a minute or two.

Instructions on How to Sew on a Button:

  1. Find a matching button. Most dress shirts have extra buttons at the bottom of the dress shirt that serve no other purpose than being a spare. If your dress shirt doesn’t have extra buttons, cut of the lowest button on your dress shirt. No one will notice if the lowest button is missing since you (1) have the shirt tugged in your pants, and (2) your jacket will cover the lower potion of your torso.
  2. Find a matching color thread. Most dress shirts use either white or blue thread. Since these colors are so common, chances are your hotel reception will have those. If you cannot find the exact thread color, use the closest color shade you can find.
  3. Remove all excess thread that might still be hanging from where the old button used to be.
  4. Cut the thread about 1/2 yards long (the length of your hand to elbow) and feed the thread to the eye-hole of the needle. Pull at least 1/4 of the thread through the needle as this will prevent the thread of coming out of the eye hole.
  5. Place the button on the right location and hold it down with one hand. With your other hand push the needle through the dress shirt from underneath, and through one of the holes in the button.
  6. Now push the needle through the hole of the button that is diagonal across from the hole where the thread is coming from. Push the needle and thread through your dress shirt.
  7. Repeat Step 5 and 6 a few times until each hole of the button has been used 2 or 3 times.
  8. Now lets create a little extra space between button and dress shirt: You start as you would in step #6 but only push the needle through the shirt, and not through the button. You now have the needle in between shirt and button. Take the thread and wrap it around the the gap between button and dress shirt. Pull it tight after each wrapping, and repeat this 4 to 5 times.
  9. Secure the thread: The easiest and most secure way to do this is by creating a knot during the previous step. Wrap the yarn around the button, but do not pull it tight. Before tightening it, pull the end of the thread through the loop, and then pull tight. Repeat this 2 to three time.
  10. Finally cut the thread. You are done.

If you follow the steps above, you will be able to sew on a new button within a minute or two.

Leather Jackets And Neckties

Neckties & Leather Jackets

Do you like the look of leather jackets? Before you go out and spend hundreds of dollars on a new designer jacket, a few simple tricks might give your old leather jacket a new trendy look.

The Retro Look:
The retro look of the 60s is back in style. Vintage sunglasses, hats, leather jackets, skinny neckties, and retro sneakers have made a huge comeback in recent years. Especially younger men and women prefer this vintage look that was first popular in the late 60s. If this is the look you prefer, the right leather jacket will be a perfect accessory for you. Best are shorter jackets that end just a below the inseam of your pants. Leather jackets that are tailored at the waist are also preferred. Check out your local second hand clothing store. With a little luck chances are you will find a original from 40 years ago.

For the perfect vintage look, wear this jacket in combination with stressed jeans, a matching dress shirt, and a skinny necktie. Don’t tie the tie all the way and leave the top button of your dress shirt open.

The Business Look:
For business wear a slightly more conservative leather jacket. If your office is more on the “conservative”, traditional business attire side, then you may want to reserve this look for a casual Fridays. The jacket should have a more elegant rather than “motorcycle gang look”. Longer jackets made from smooth black leather are best. Keep the season of the year in mind as well. For business attire leather jackets are best suited for colder, winter days. Also, do not wear your suit jacket underneath. The leather jacket will take it’s place.

Your Cheap Neckties Team

Is John McCain a Well-Dressed Man?

John McCain’s Fashion Sense

When compared to Barack Obama, John McCain seems to enjoy a wider variety in necktie colors and patterns. Among his favorite necktie colors are slightly darker reds, darker shades of blue, and orange. Now to the question: Is John McCain a well dressed man? Overall the answer is a clear Yes! Weather it is his own sense for matching colors and styles, or his fashion consultants, his color, pattern, and design choices couldn’t be much better.

Most often you will see John McCain in a charcoal gray suit, or a fine pin striped suit in either dark blue or gray. His most popular dress shirts are light blue, and his necktie colors range from orange, to red, and dark blues. The color combination is well matched to Mr McCain’s complexion. Fashion experts would speak of a low contrast profile for John McCain. What this means is that the contrast between light and dark in his hair and skin complexion is pretty close. Fashion experts recommend to match lower contrast clothes with lower contrast skin and hair color. John McCain does exactly this. He typically wears suits and shirt with a lower contrast ratio, such as a light blue dress shirt with a dark gray suit.

John McCain wears a fine pin-striped suit quite often. This pattern works really well for his slightly fuller body type as diagonal stripes make him look slimmer. His ties either have fine checkered patterns or classic diagonal stripes.

Cuts & Designs
Most common are 2-button suit jackets for MrCain. The two button suit has a lower “V” cut which goes well with his fuller figure. The lower “V” cut on the suit jacket will make him appear taller and thinner. In addition, Mr. McCain’s suit jackets are not tapered at the waist, hiding any excess weight. Fashion experts call suit jackets in this style a “Full Cut”.

Barack Obama’s Favorite Neckties

What is Barack Obama’s Favorite Necktie Color?

After going through pictures of Barack Obama’s public appearances, we came to the conclusion that his favorite necktie color is in fact blue. He seems to favor light blue ties in especially. Below are a few pictures of Barack Obama wearing light blue neckties. We were a little stunned when we found out that we have very similar, almost identical looking neckties to the ones he is wearing. Did someone order them at our site for him? To compare his ties with the ones we thought are identical, simply click on the pictures below.

The Psychology of The Color Blue
Blue is most men’s favorite color. It is said to have a calming effect on people. Moreover, studies have shown that people are more productive in rooms that have blue wallpaper.

Next Up: John McCain’s Neckties

The Right Dress Shoes For Suit & Tie

Tips to Match Your Dress Shoes

Are you getting bored with the same old suit and tie look day in and day out? Are you looking for new ways to add more style to your business outfit? The key is in the right accessories, and learning how to match them to your suit. The most popular accessories that will freshen up your “business-suit look” are: Neckties, belts, shoes, cufflinks, and wrist watches. Ties are the easiest way to add more color and style to your outfit. But what about the shoes? There are endless different shoe styles and colors to choose from. Below are a few tips to keep in mind when matching your dress shoes to your business suit.

The Color:
Most popular are black dress shoes. Black dress shoes will match well best with blue, gray, and black suits. If you are new to wearing suit and tie, then buy a pair of black dress shoes first before considering any other shoe color. Black is the most formal, and most classic shoe color for men in business.

Brown shoes are the second most common shoe color to be worn with suit and tie. Brown shoes should always be matched with a brown belt! If you do not own a brown belt, don’t wear your brown shoes until you bought the matching belt. Brown shoes look best with tan and also green suits. Blue suits can also look great together with brown shoes and brown belt. Best suited are blue pin-striped suits in this case.

The Style:

Make sure that dress shoe style harmonizes with the rest of your outfit. If you happen to own a pair of Italian designer shoes that look like a mix between loafers and cowboy boots, make sure to wear them with the right kind of suit, tie, and belt. In this case a modern 3-button suit with fine pin-stripe pattern would work excellent. The belt buckle could also be more on the “exotic” style. As a general rule the more extraordinary the shoe design, the more fashionable of a suit you should wear.

Your Socks:
Your socks should match the color of your pants. If you are wearing a gray suit, gray or black socks are best suited. Blue socks should be avoided in this case. For tan or beige suits wear socks in the shade of brown. And PLEASE never wear tennis socks with your suit!

Other Accessories:

Cufflinks are always a great way to add more style to your outfit. Black shoes look best with silver cufflinks, and brown shoes match best with a golden pair of cufflinks. Make sure that the belt buckle color matches the color of your cufflinks.

When to Wear a Novelty Tie

Novelty Neckties & Bow Ties

Novelty neckties became popular in the glamor times of the 80s. Cheesy, bright ties were most popular – even for business events. Today novelty ties have a slightly tacky reputation. They are after all a Novelty and not a fashion statement. Although the novelty tie is much less popular than it used to be, there are occasions when it is acceptable to wear one.
Dress Code for Novelty Ties
Typically, the less formal an event, and more laid-back the dress code, the more likely you can pull off wearing a novelty tie. If you are going to a Star Wars party for example, then yes, wear your Novelty tie with Darth Vader on it. For business attire novelty ties should be worn only on special holidays. A necktie with small shamrocks would be great for St Patrick’s day.

At Cheap Neckties it is our mission to only offer modern and classic necktie designs. Since we are more fashion oriented than most of our competitors, we do not carry novelty ties in our inventory.

How to Buy a Men’s Suit

How to Buy a Men’s Suit

Are you new to wearing a suit and tie, and are confused by the endless options available to you? Even though the men’s suit has remained pretty much unchanged since the mind 19th century, many men look for advice on buying their first business suit. The quick buying guide below will help you learn all the basics when shopping for a new suit.

How much to spend?
This obviously depends on you and your budget. If the suit is in fact part of your daily work attire, it is recommended to spend a few extra dollars and be happy with your purchase every time you wear the suit. If you are a bargain shopper, look for sales, and buy your suit not the day you need it, but when you find a good sale. $200 is the minimum you should plan to spend. $300 usually gets you a nice quality, and well tailored suit.

What fabrics?
When buying a new suit, choosing a suit made from quality fabric is one of the most important things. Suits should me made out of wool as wool is more comfortable to wear in a wide range of temperatures and climates. Man-made fabrics such as Polyester and Teflon should be avoided as they do not breathe, and will be quite uncomfortable. Wool makers distinguish the quality of their wool in terms of numbers that typically range from 80s to 200s. The finer the wool the higher the number will be. Best are suits made from super 100s, or super 120s. Higher numbers are finer and might be more comfortable, but are less suited for a daily business suit: They show wrinkles more and won’t last as long.

The cut:
For your first suit, choose a standard suit that matches will with most colors of shirt and tie. The best suits for business are:

  1. Single Breasted (meaning that the sides DON’T overlap)
  2. Charcoal gray or dark blue in color
  3. Solid color (reserve the Italian pin stripes for your second or third suit)
  4. 2 or 3 button

The right fit:
Make sure that the sleeves have the right length. When wearing the jacket and standing straight, let your arms hang down. The sleeves should end where your arms meet your wrists. Besides the sleeves, ensure that the jacket fits right on your shoulders. Stretch both arms forward to ensure that you still have movement. Finally take a look at the collar and the back of your jacket. About 1/2 inch of your dress shirt should show. The jacket should lay straight, and without wrinkles on your shoulders.

The pants:
Fitting pants is much easier than the jacket. That’s why you always want to start with the right jacket first. For your pants the only two things that matter are:

  1. The color and fabric must match to the jacket
  2. The pants must fit at your waist.

The length of your pants will always be altered to the right length. The classic look of the pants is slightly relaxed when standing, and about 2-3 inches of your dress socks showing when sitting down.

Your Cheap Neckties Team

Cleaning Silk Ties

Top 6 Tips on Cleaning Silk Ties

1. Avoid stains in first place:
This is a little easier said than done, but a few scenarios are most common for getting your silk ties ruined. The most common way silk ties get stained is by eating. Next time you go to a business lunch or dinner wear a napkin. Opening of the your shirt’s buttons and tugging your necktie under your dress shirt is a great option, but should not be used at a formal business lunch or dinner.

2. Avoid Wearing Solid Color Ties
Fine solid color ties will show stains the easiest. For that reason, avoid wearing solid color ties in lighter colors during dinner/ lunch events. If the solid color tie is part of your dress code, then it is advisable to have the same tie with you as a back up. At Cheap-Neckties we offer solid color ties as low as $5. There is no reason why not to buy two of the tie you like.

2. Use Cold, Not Hot Water
If possible rinse the stain on your tie with cold water right away. Avoid hot water. Hot water will cause the stain to penetrate deeper into the fabric. Simply rinse, and do not rub the stain in. At the most, dampen the tie with a moist piece of cloth.

3. Rubbing Alcohol
Diluting rubbing alcohol with cold water is a good option to clean your tie should the stain have dried already. put the solvent onto a piece of cloth and carefully tap it onto the stain. Don’t overdo this. Sometimes the stain is gone sooner than you think.

4. Dry-Cleaning a Necktie?
Dry-cleaning a necktie should be your last option. Should you have tried everything, and the stain on your silk tie is still there, then consider going to the dry-cleaner. The risk of dry cleaning a necktie is that the fabric and the inlay of the necktie will get damaged. The stain might be gone afterwards, but the tie won’t look and tie the same as before. Talk to your dry-cleaner and get more information on how the silk fabric will be treated. The tie should never be pressed or ironed as this will ruin the inlay of the necktie.

5. Send The Tie in:
Some very high end necktie brands, costing in excess of $150, offer the option to have the tie cleaned and resown by hand. This involves opening the seam of the necktie, cleaning the fabric to a as-new condition, cutting a brand new inlay, and sewing it back together. If you have a necktie that was either very expensive, or has some sentimental value (fathers day gift for instance), then this option might be right for you.

6. Keep Your Jacket closed:
If none of the things above worked for you, then keep your jacket on, and the top button closed. Wear a 3-button jacket so that the stained area of your necktie won’t be visible. You can still wear your tie and no one will notice the stain.

If you liked this article, you might also find helpful:
Learn How to Sew on a Button

Your Cheap-Neckties Team