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How To Tie A Tie | 8 different ways to tie a necktie

Learning how to tie a tie is a rite of passage for every gentleman. And it certainly matters even more so if you are an aspiring dapper gentleman!  In this guide, we’ll show you eight ways to tie a tie and the merits of each of them!

So you’ve bought that tie you had your eyes set on for a while, and are ready to wear it.  Maybe you’ve worn it to work, and now you want to put it on casually.  Or maybe you’ve worn it to a semi-formal event, but now need to wear it to an all important presentation. 

Before delving in, feel free to view The Dark Knot's Ties in a range of knots with this exquisite video below by Gents Lounge:

 

How To Tie The Three Most Important Tie Knots

Four-In-Hand Knot

Four In Hand Knot Summary:

  • Knot Size: Fairly Small
  • Symmetry: Not Fully Symmetrical
  • Difficulty: Very Easy To Tie
  • Collar Type: Best Worn With A Narrow Or Medium Spread Collar
  • Occasion: Daily Work, Social Occasions, Evening Out, Date Night

The four in hand knot is also known as the simple knot or schoolboy knot due to its simplicity and style. History suggests that the four in hand knot came to be known as a result of members of the four in hand club in London starting to regularly pull this tie off, hence making it fashionable. 

The four-in-hand knot makes for a narrow, asymmetrical tie knot. The four in hand knot is best worn with a narrow spread collared shirt, and is suited for men who are trying to accentuate perceived vertical lines i.e look taller. The four in hand knot looks especially good on gentlemen with shorter necks as it serves to elongate their neck.

How To Tie A Four-In-Hand-Knot:

  1. Start with the wide end of your necktie on your left, extending about 8 inches to a foot below the narrow end of the tie.
  2. Cross the wide end over the narrow end of the tie.
  3. Bring the wide end underneath the narrow end of the tie.
  4. Continue bringing the wide end over the narrow end of the tie again.
  5. Pull the wide end through the loop.
  6. Hold the knot loosely and slip the wide end of the tie through the loop.
  7. Remove your finger and tighten the knot. While tightening your knot, create a dimple under your knot by pressing in with your index finger as you pinch the sides of the knot with your  thumb and middle finger.  This dimple in your necktie will leave you looking extremely dapper!

Below is a detailed infographic presented by Men’s Style Expert Antonio Centeno with Real Men Real Style:

Four In Hand Knot infographic

Alternatively, you can check out how to tie a four in hand knot with our recently published video from The Dark Knot:

 

Half Windsor Knot

Half Windsor Knot Summary:

  • Knot Size: Average Knot Size
  • Symmetry: Fairly Symmetrical
  • Difficulty: Average Difficulty
  • Collar Type: Best Worn With Medium Spread Collar
  • Occasion: Daily Work, Presentation, Wedding Reception

The Half Windsor Knot produces a singular, neat triangular knot, which is larger than the four in hand knot but smaller than a full windsor knot. Contrary to popular belief, the half windsor knot does not take up half the space of a full windsor knot, but rather about 75%, and so still creates an air of elegance about it. 

The Half Windsor Knot is best worn with a medium or wide spread collar, due to its size and thickness. The Half Windsor Knot is a great knot for semi-formal, formal occasions and work, and because it is easier to tie than a full windsor knot, makes it extremely convenient year round! The Half Windsor Knot would particularly suit slimmer men with longer necks, as it serves to accentuate horizontal lines i.e make you look broader.

How To Tie A Half Windsor Knot:

  1. Begin with the wide end of the tie on the right hand side. Keep the wide end of your tie about eight inches to a foot below the skinny end of your tie.
  2. Cross the large end of the necktie over the slimmer end.
  3. Bring the wide end of the tie under the loop.
  4. Bring the wide end of the tie over and through the loop, allowing the back end of the tie to fall through on your right hand.
  5. Bring the tie over the knot, from right to left, wrapping it over and under the knot
  6. Bring the tie through the loop.
  7. Slide the wide end of the tie through the knot.
  8. Fasten the knot and create a dimple when adjusting the knot. While tightening your knot, create a dimple under your knot by pressing in with your index finger as you pinch the sides of the knot with your thumb and middle finger.  This dimple in your necktie will leave you looking extremely dapper!

Below is a detailed infographic presented by Men’s Style Expert Antonio Centeno with Real Men Real Style:

Half Windsor Knot Infographic

Alternatively, you can check out how to tie a Half Windsor knot with our very recently published video from The Dark Knot:

 

Full Windsor Knot (aka Windsor Knot or Double Windsor Knot)

Full Windsor Knot:

  • Knot Size: Fairly Large Knot Size
  • Symmetry: Symmetrical
  • Difficulty: Average
  • Collar Type: Medium Or Wide Spread Collar
  • Occasion: Formal Events, Wedding Reception, Presentation, Black Tie

The Grand Daddy of all knots, the Full Windsor Knot is considered the most elegant of all. The Full Windsor Knot produces a wide, symmetrical triangular knot. The Windsor Knot is a thick, wide and triangular knot that projects confidence. It is therefore a popular knot of choice for presentations, job interviews, important meetings, weddings and other formal occasions. 

How To Tie A Full Windsor Knot:

  1. Start with the wide end of the necktie on your left, about 12 inches (a foot) below the skinny end of your tie. More difference in length is needed for a full Windsor knot versus the half Windsor or four in hand, as more fabric is used to tie the necktie.  This is important to understand so that you can get the knot right hopefully on the first go around!
  2. Cross the wide end of the tie over the skinny end.
  3. Bring the wide end of the tie under the cross and through the loop
  4. The wide end of your tie should out on the right hand side.
  5. Bring the wide end of the tie underneath the knot (from right to left)
  6. When you have taken the wide end underneath the knot, take the wide end of the tie through the loop from the outside.
  7. The wide end of the tie should now be on your left hand side, with the base of your full Windsor knot firmly formed
  8. Wrap the wide end of the tie over the knot (from left to right).
  9. Bring the wide end of the tie underneath the knot and through the loop.
  10. Slide the wide end of the tie through the knot.
  11. Tighten and adjust the knot. .  While tightening your knot, create a dimple under your knot by pressing in with your index finger as you pinch the sides of the knot with your thumb and middle finger.  This dimple in your necktie will leave you looking extremely dapper!

Below is a detailed infographic presented by Men’s Style Expert Antonio Centeno with Real Men Real Style:

Full Windsor Knot Infographic

Alternatively, you can check out how to tie a Full Windsor Knot with our very recently published video  from The Dark Knot:

 

How To Tie Classic Necktie Knots

The Pratt (Shelby) Knot

The Pratt (Shelby Knot) Summary:

  • Knot Size: Average Knot Size
  • Symmetry: Fairly Symmetrical
  • Difficulty: Not Very Difficult to Tie
  • Collar Type: Best Worn With A Medium Spread Collar
  • Occasion: Daily Work, Evening Out, Wedding Reception

Looking for a tie knot that is in between the four in hand and half Windsor? Cue The Pratt Knot. Jerry Pratt, the inventor of the knot, worked for the U.S chamber of commerce. For 30 years, Mr. Pratt had tied his necktie in distinct fashion, before anchorman Don Shelby discovered and publicized the knot on television in 1989.

The Pratt Knot is a versatile, highly elegant knot, of medium size, between the four in hand and half Windsor. It is best worn with a narrow spread or medium spread collar. The Pratt Knot is ideal for daily work, an evening out or the next wedding reception. It should not be used in the most formal of situations.

How To Tie A Pratt (Shelby) Knot:

  1. Keep the tie around your neck, with the backside of the tie facing outwards. Keep the wide end of the tie on your left, and the skinny end of the right. The tip of the skinny end should lay just above your belly button (but this will vary depending on your height and the length of your tie).
  2. Cross the wide end of the tie under the skinny end, to your right.
  3. Bring the wide end of the tie up to the center, and through the loop
  4. Bring it down to your right side.
  5. Bring the wide end, across the skinny end towards your left
  6. Bring the wide end underneath the skinny end, and up through the loop.
  7. Take the wide end down through the loop that you have just created in the previous step.
  8. Tighten the knot by pulling down on the wide end.

How To Tie A Pratt Knot

Courtesy of www.ties.com

Alternatively, please feel free to watch this excellent tie knot tutorial by Birch Box Man:

 

Simple Knot / Oriental Knot:

Simple Knot / Oriental Knot Summary:

  • Knot Size: Very Small Knot Size
  • Symmetry: Not Fully Symmetrical
  • Difficulty: Extremely Easy To Tie
  • Collar Type: Best Worn With A Narrow Spread Collar
  • Occasion: Casual Events, Evening Out, Date Night

Looking for something even simpler than the four in hand? Yes, even we didn’t think it was possible. The simple knot, whilst not tied with popularity in the west, is sometimes worn in the east. It is a small, asymmetrical knot that is tied with the wide and skinny end facing outwards when you begin. The simple knot works well with thick neckties or for taller men who don’t have an extra long length tie.

How To Tie A Simple / Oriental Knot:

  1. Start with the tie facing outside, with the wide end of the tie on your left side and the skinny end of the tie on your right side. The tip of the skinny end of the tie should rest slightly above your belly button (however, this will vary depending on your height, and the length and thickness of your tie).
  2. Cross the wide end of the tie underneath the skinny end, to your right.
  3. Bring the wide end over the skinny end, to your left.
  4. Bring the wide end up through the neckloop, from underneath.
  5. Take the wide end through the loop you have just created in the previous step.
  6. Pull down the wide end to tighten. Slide the knot up to adjust.

How To Tie A Simple / Oriental Knot

Courtesy of www.realmenrealstyle.com

Alternatively, you can view this outstanding video tutorial courtesy of Real Men Real Style:

 

Kelvin Knot

Kelvin Knot Summary:

  • Knot Size: Average Knot Size
  • Symmetry: Somewhat Symmetrical
  • Difficulty: Fairly Easy To Tie (slightly more difficult than a Four-In-Hand Knot)
  • Collar Type: Best Worn With A Narrow Or Medium Spread Collar
  • Occasion: Social Occasions, Evening Out, Date Night

Looking for a straight forward tie knot that is similar to the four in hand knot, but that is more angular and with more substance? Cue The Kelvin Knot. The Kelvin is an extension of the Four In Hand Knot. Unlike the four in hand, the Kelvin starts with the tie lying inside out, resulting in an inverted tail.

The Kelvin Knot is named after Lord Kelvin, a mathematical physicist!

The Kelvin Knot, similar to the Four In Hand Knot, is best worn with a narrow or medium spread collar. Given the informal nature of the knot, it is best worn to social occasions such as a date night or evening out!

How To Tie A Kelvin Knot:

Similar to the four in hand knot, the kelvin knot is best worn with a narrow spread collar. The kelvin knot is highly versatile (but shouldn’t be worn to the most formal occasions), and so can be worn to daily work, a date night or on an evening out.

  1. Start with the backside of the tie facing away from you, with the wide end on your left side and the skinny end on your right side. The tip of the small end should rest slightly above your belly button (will vary depending on your height, and the length and thickness of your tie). This tie is tied using the wide end.
  2. Bring the wide end under the skinny end to your right.
  3. Bring the wide end across the small end to your left.
  4. Bring it over the wide end to your right.
  5. Take it across the skinny end to your left.
  6. Bring the wide end up through the neck loop from underneath.
  7. Bring the wide end through the loop that you have just created.
  8. Pull down the wide end to tighten. Slide the knot up to adjust.

How To Tie A Kelvin Knot

Courtesy of www.ties.com

Alternatively, you can view this outstanding tutorial by Real Men Real Style:

 

Prince Albert Knot

Prince Albert Knot Summary:
  • Knot Size: Average Knot Size
  • Symmetry: Not Fully Symmetrical
  • Difficulty: Fairly Easy To Tie (slightly more difficult than a Four-In-Hand Knot)
  • Collar Type: Best Worn With A Narrow Or Medium Spread Collar
  • Occasion: Social Occasions, Evening Out, Date Night

A variation of the four-in-hand-knot, the Prince Albert was actually worn by its namesake, Prince Albert, husband to Queen Victoria. The wide end of the tie crosses the skinny end twice. The first crossing / turning should stand out at the bottom of the knot. This slightly asymmetrical knot (like the four in hand) has more bulk than its predecessor. Wear this knot with a narrow or medium spread collar.

This knot is ideal for more social occasions such as a date night or an evening out!

How To Tie A Prince Albert Knot:

  1. Start with the wide end of the tie on your left and the skinny end of your tie on your right. The skinny end of the tie should be hanging just slightly above your belly button, though this will vary based upon your height and the length of the tie.
  2. Cross the wide end over the skinny end of the tie, to your right.
  3. Bring the wide end underneath the skinny end, to your left.
  4. Bring the wide end over the skinny end, to your right.
  5. Take the wide end underneath the skinny end, to your left.
  6. Take the wide end over the skinny end, to your right.
  7. Bring the wide end up through the neckloop, from underneath.
  8. Take the wide end down through both loops in the front.
  9. Tighten the knot by pulling down on the wide end. Slide the knot up and then adjust. The first loop should peek slightly under the second loop.

How To Tie A Prince Albert Knot

Courtesy of 101 Knots

Alternatively, you can check out this excellent tutorial by Howcast:

 

 

How To Tie Novelty Tie Knots

Eldredge Knot

Eldredge Knot Summary:

  • Knot Size: Fairly Large Knot
  • Symmetry: Not Fully Symmetrical
  • Difficulty: Difficult To Tie (Given Several Layered Components)
  • Collar Type: Best Worn With A Wide Spread Collar
  • Occasion: Social Occasions, Evening Out, Date Night

Looking for a knot that is both dramatic and fancy? Cue the Eldredge Knot. The Eldredge Knot is a tie knot for gentlemen who are not afraid to dress bold, and are willing to take risks in doing so. An Eldredge Knot consists of four diagonal sections and one horizontal section, all layered on top of each other.

The Eldredge Knot was invented by Jerry Eldredge in 2007.

An Eldredge Knot is not symmetrcical (leaning towards the wearer’s right side) as the right side sections overlay on top of the left side diagonal sections. Given the unique nature of this complex knot, it will require a wider spread collar. Please note that an Eldredge Knot is best reserved for casual to relaxed formal events, such as a date night or wedding reception. It is simply too intricate and a bold risk to be worn to more formal settings such as a work presentation or black tie event!

The Eldredge Tie Knot requires an unorthodox unique, where the narrow end of the tie is used to tie the tie (typically, with other conventional tie knots, we are tying the knot with the wider end of the tie).

How To Tie An Eldredge Knot:

  1. Place the tie around your neck, with the wide end of the tie around your right side and the skinny end around your left. Position the wide end of the tie to a length that you would like it to finish at.
  2. Cross the skinny end of the tie over the wide end, towards your right.
  3. Wrap the skinny end of the tie underneath the knot, and over towards your left.
  4. Pull up the skinny end through the neck loop, and pass it to your right side.
  5. Cross it over the knot, towards your left.
  6. Pull it up through the loop from underneath, and then pass it down to the left right side
  7. Wrap the skinny end underneath the knot, towards your left. Try and keep this part loose!
  8. Cross it over to the right and through the loop you have just created in the previous step (step no. 7).
  9. Pull the skinny end of the tie towards your right to tighten it.
  10. Pull the skinny end of the tie up through the neck loop (section of tie around your neck), and bring it through onto your right side.
  11. Now take the thin end up to the center, towards the neck loop (section of tie around your neck), and bring it down through the neck loop and on your left. Please keep this part loose!
  12. Bring the skinny end across the front towards your left, and through the loop made in the previous step (step no.11).
  13. Pull the small end towards your right to tighten
  14. Tuck the rest of the skinny end behind the neck loop on your right side.
  15. Strut your new found tie knot and confidently put yourself in the top 1% of tie knot technical ability!

How To Tie An Eldredge Knot

Courtesy of www.realmenrealstyle.com

Alternatively, please check out this excellent tutorial by My Nice Tie:

 

 

The Trinity Knot

Trinity Knot Summary:
  • Knot Size: Fairly Large Knot
  • Symmetry: Not Symmetrical Given Intersection Of Three Different Components
  • Difficulty: Difficult To Tie (Slightly More Difficult Than Full Windsor)
  • Collar Type: Best Worn With A Wide Spread Collar
  • Occasion: Social Occasions, Evening Out, Date Night

Similar to the Eldredge Knot above, The Trinity Knot is a complex, yet sophisticated tie knot that is best reserved for social or semi formal occasions such as a date night or possibly your next wedding reception.

The Trinity Knot showcases three different sections that weave together in the middle, creating a knot with beautiful triangular proportions. Given the size of a trinity knot (slightly larger than a full Windsor), it is best worn with a spread collar!

Like the Eldredge Knot, the Trinity Know is tied using the skinny end of the tie.

How To Tie A Trinity Knot:

  1. Place the tie around your neck, with the wide end of the tie around your right side and the skinny end of the tie around your left side. Position the wide end of the tie at the desired location you would like it to finish.
  2. Cross the skinny end of the tie over the wide end, to your right.
  3. Bring the skinny end of the tie through the neck loop from underneath,
  4. Bring the skinny end of the tie over to your right side.
  5. Bring it underneath the wide end, towards the left hand side.
  6. Bring the skinny end up and over through the neck loop
  7. Bring the skinny end down to your right side.
  8. Cross it over the wide end, towards your left
  9. Bring the skinny end down through the loop, towards your right, and keep it loose
  10. Bring the skinny end under the side end, and slide it through the loop you just created in the above step.
  11. Tighten and tuck the rest of the small end behind the neck loop on the right side.

How To Tie A Trinity Knot

Courtesy of www.ties.com

Alternatively, you can check out this outstanding tutorial by My Nice Tie:

 

Balthus Knot

Balthus Knot Summary:

  • Knot Size: Very Large Knot
  • Symmetry: Fully Symmetrical
  • Difficulty: Fairly Difficult (slightly more difficult than a Full Windsor Knot)
  • Collar Type: Best Worn With A Wide Spread Collar
  • Occasion: Fine Dining Dinner, Theatre, Artistic Events

Looking for a statement knot that is even more of a grand daddy knot than the full Windsor? Cue the Balthus Knot! The Balthus Knot is as large as a necktie knot comes. The Balthus Knot extends the Full Windsor Knot by adding an extra layer. Because of the number of times the wide end is wrapped around the small end, the finished tie produces a more substantive knot than the Full Windsor. The finished knot is broad and conical in shape.

Given the size of this tie knot and its over the top formality, The Balthus Knot is best worn to fancier events, such as a fine dining dinner, theatre or more artistic events!

The Balthus Knot, an unorthodox, symmetrical knot was named after a Polish French painter. Apparently, he invented the knot out of boredom, yet he never bothered to wear it regularly! This knot is best reserved for the most formal of occasions, and should definitely be worn with a wide spread collar.

Another important point of consideration is that while we advocate skinnier men wearing a Full Windsor Knot to add horizontal lines, a Balthus Knot may look too out of proportion. This knot should therefore be reserved for men of average or a heavier build.

How To Tie A Balthus Knot:

  1. Start with the tie hanging around your neck, with the back facing outwards. Keep the wide end of the tie on your left and the skinny end of the tie on your right. The skinny end of the tie should be raised significantly above your belly button, as this tie knot requires even more fabric than the Full Windsor Knot.
  2. Cross the wide end of the tie, underneath the skinny end, to your right.
  3. Bring the wide end up over the center, and through the neck loop.
  4. Bring the wide end towards your left.
  5. Bring the wide end up the center, over and through the neck loop,
  6. Take the wide end to your right.
  7. Bring the wide end up and over the center, through the neck loop.
  8. Bring the wide end down towards your left.
  9. Wrap the wide end over the skinny end from left to right.
  10. Take the wide end under the skinny end and up through the neck loop.
  11. Pull the wide end through the loop created in the previous step.
  12. Slide the wide end of the tie down and adjust the knot.

How To Tie A Balthus Knot

Courtesy of www.ties.com

Alternatively, you can check out this great tutorial by Ties.com!

 

And there you have it. Eight Tie Knots! Between the three tie knots that every gentleman should know, a few classic knots and some novelty knots, you have all your bases covered!

At The Dark Knot, we offer two lengths (extra long for men over 6’1), so that taller men do not have to worry about running out of tie fabric when tying a full windsor knot! To view The Dark Knot's range of extra long ties, please click here.

Are you looking for a range of essential, go to ties that you can wear throughout the week, whether its for daily work, an important meeting, a presentation or date night?!? To view our Essential Tie Collection, please click here.

 


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