How do you tie the Four-in-Hand knot?

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Answered by: Charles, An Expert in the Style Tips Category
For men the necktie is one of the best ways to express individuality through your wardrobe. Your tie choice can make or break your outfit. In some cases it can even affect how you’re viewed in business situations, on a date, an interview or at an event. Certain colors and patterns can convey different messages about the wearer—even their decision making ability. Because they are primary colors, red yellow and blue are hues used for power ties, with red and blue leading the way. Take notice of public officials, especially President Obama, he nearly always wears a red tie for important meetings, press conferences and addresses.

Base your tie choice on the color pallet of the suite and shirt, the occasion, day of the week, who you’re meeting with and what about. Ideally, you’ll want to make sure that all three share similar shades and no one element overpowers the other. Also take into account whether or not you have the right pocket square to seal the deal. Now that all the elements are standing by, it’s time to opt for the perfect knot; another key component in completing your ensemble.

There are four commonly used knots to prevaricate when tying a necktie, and if you factor in bow ties or ascots it gives you six options. The Four-in-Hand knot has traditionally been the most popular style and one of the easiest to learn. That being said, it’s also the one that gets butchered by most men. This elongated knot is straight and if not correctly executed can appear somewhat uneven. The Four-in-Hand knot works well with most shirt collar styles except for the full spread collar; and unless you are particularly adept at tying it perfectly I wouldn’t suggest you try this combination.

The second knot to consider is the full Windsor. This is a more formal knot and generally worn with a full spread collar shirts. This knot shaped like an upside down pyramid, is very wide and it takes a lot of fabric to effect. The Windsor has seen resurgence lately among more youthful men trying to emulate their young mogul contemporaries like Jay-Z, Ditty and Kanye West. Personally, The Windsor knot is too immense for these men who don’t have the neck to support such a broad knot. Some local reporters have adopted this look and it’s very distracting. The full Windsor throws everything off, and instead of looking polished it degrades your appearance and makes you look more like a clown, rather than sharp man about town.

Lastly, try The Half-Windsor, a medium triangular knot that’s less ceremonial than its sibling the full Windsor, but a little more polished than the old stand-bye, the Four-in-Hand. It works with all collar styles that accommodate ties, and can go from 9 to 5, after 5 and after 6 events that don’t require traditional black tie ensemble. This knot is ideal, because it’s very versatile and always looks sharp. It provides a more polished look and shows that you attention to detail and care about your appearance.

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