Ties are the most common male accessory worn around the world. A tie is an element that gives a man elegance, style and refinement. This is why your ties should always be impeccable and should always express your personality, taste and preferences.
Vintage ties are becoming more and more fashionable today, as the rediscovery of old fashions brings new inspiration and new ways of expression. Vintage pieces have cultural meanings attached to them and, while we encourage you to own a few vintage clothes, we think that there are some things that need to be considered when you are purchasing a vintage item. We want you to look your best and this is why we have put together a list of things you should consider when you want to wear a vintage tie.
Quality, quality and quality
When you are buying a vintage tie, you should always make sure that it is really worth wearing. Look for any striking abnormalities, defects, smells, etc., that might make your tie unwearable. Always remember that a vintage tie is not a new tie and that it will have flaws, but if these aren’t major ones, they shouldn’t take away from the piece’s value.
Make sure that your seller is honest about the era from which your tie comes, the state it is in, whether it has been through alterations or not and so on.
It can be hard to find an honest source, but it is definitely worth it. There is no point in buying a “lie tie”; it is basically the equivalent of buying a rip-off!
There are, however, a lot of places where you can find quality vintage ties and you can even get them online. The Tie Haberdashery is a great website offering high-quality ties dating back to the 1970s and even to the 1920s. Their ties come in different styles and definitely have the mark of their time all over them. What we like about the Tie Haberdashery is that currently all their ties cost $25 +shipping. We feel that’s a fair price and that it’s great that they all cost the same; this way there is no debate on why a tie from the 30s costs more or less than one from the 70s.
Mix it with modern pieces
When you are wearing a vintage tie, you should always wear it with modern pieces. There are some people who think that vintage accessories work well paired with other vintage accessories, but we believe that, since you are living in the 21st century, you should look like you are living in the 21st century. Wearing references to other times and places is alright and we encourage you to do that, but we don’t want you to look like you are wearing a costume. We think that one vintage piece in your outfit is enough, but if you really want you can opt for two pieces at a time.
If you want to be clear about the era you are referencing, you can wear modern clothes that have a vintage vibe. So many designs today are inspired from vintage clothes, without looking like a costume. We encourage you to wear your vintage tie with modern clothes that have that certain vintage vibe, but are not vintage in themselves.
Since vintage ties are clearly a statement, we recommend that you wear them mostly with casual outfits. On The Tie Haberdashery website, you can find a lot of colorful styles and designs that would fit a casual shirt with or without short sleeves very well.
Know your references
When you are wearing a vintage tie, it is very important to know exactly where it comes from and what it represents. You might find out that some styles reference dark events and you don’t want to attract the wrong kind of attention. Always make sure the tie you are wearing was not part of some gruesome association’s uniform.
Know your styles
When wearing vintage ties, many men think they’ve tied their tie wrongly, if the front end is shorter than the thin end. If you find yourself in this situation, you didn’t do something wrong, as many men in the past used to stick the thin, long end in their waistband. Some famous guys like Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly used to place the entire tie in their waistband to keep it from flying away. But these days, there are better ways to make your tie stay in place. Which brings us to our next point.
Even though ties are already accessories, they can be further accessorized with smaller accessories. Tie clips, pins and other creative pieces can make a tie both stable and stylish. We think that a vintage tie looks better with a modern tie bar, but it really is all a matter of taste. If you wish, you can wear a vintage tie with a vintage tie bar (but then you should not wear any other vintage item).
If you are wearing a vintage tie with another vintage piece, you should consider whether you want to mix eras or not. Will a tie from the 1930s work with a tie clip from the 1990s? The answer is both yes and no. To make sure two vintage pieces go together well, at least one of them should be what you would consider “timeless”. For example, a simple, golden tie clip is a timeless piece. Of course, it will have a subtle mark of its era in its design, but overall it is a piece you can wear with a tie from any decade and place.
A few months ago, we wrote an article on buying vintage, in which we briefly explained the characteristics of each decade of the 20th century in terms of style. Knowing these, you will be able to tell which style or styles match your personality and taste best. There are a lot of reasons why you should buy vintage, but in the end, the decision is yours.
Fraquoh and Franchomme
P.S. Do you like wearing vintage ties? What era do you like best? What do you pair them with? Share your thoughts, comments or questions in the feedback space below! For more articles on men’s style, fashion and lifestyle, you can follow us via e-mail or become a fan on Facebook or Twitter!