In this age of work from home, digital agency and geek chic style – we wonder are ties still relevant? Everyman looks sharper wearing a tie, but there have been fewer opportunities to wear one this year. Check out our recommendations for wearing the right tie when working from home or the occasional day at the office.
Being a gentleman and a man of society means knowing how to dress for every occasion. The way you dress is the way people perceive you. It is a crucial aspect of human interaction as people will form an opinion and judge you based on the first impression. So, let's decode together the mystery of when to wear a tie!
As more workspaces accept a smart-casual dress code and work from home has taken over in the past years, we question the role of the tie within the context of workwear for men.
The tie does not keep you warm and has no other functional role except to decorate. It is an accessory that brings colour and pattern to the men's formal attire. Will the tie be extinct from the working place? We think not. The tie is more just a symbol of formality and tradition.
The tie's origins are military, and an example of neckwear called "focale" can be noticed on the Roman legionaries on Trajan's Column in Rome dating from the second century AD. Another example can be found on the terracotta army of Shih Huang Ti and the Qin dynasty (221-206 BC) with silk cords around their necks, which were more a status symbol than a fashion accessory.
However, the most similar items to the modern ties were worn by the Croatian mercenaries in the Thirty Years War (1618-1648). The purpose of the neckwear similar to a cravat was to signal comradeship. It was introduced in the civilian society by Louis XIV of France.
Skipping forward to the 1920s, the British armed forces personnel wore ties in regimental colours having the stripes running from the left shoulder to the right at functions that required civilian dress. In the US the influential men's outfitters Brook Brother's had their version of ties with the stripes running from the right to left. Ties have been used more than just an accessory, or decoration.
"The tie used to be a powerful signifier of social status - the regimental tie, the club tie and, above all, the old school tie were all used as symbols of authority and belonging, and as a subtle way of excluding those who did not belong."
Brian Wheeler, BBC News
Work from Home
The end of every day in the office doesn't mean the end of the tie. Now, more than ever, you have to remain positive and productive. To look the part, consider dressing to reflect your position. Although the world around us is turning on its head, you show that you are in control of your life and work.
Make your own rules about what to wear during your morning video meetings and conferences. As a suit might not be the right choice in terms of comfort from working for home, choose a shirt and a tie during the day. Wear some comfortable trousers in a dark colour, and you will be ready for a productive day.
Clothing is about what you communicate to the others, and in the context of working from home and reduced human contact, choose a tie. Depending on your day ahead, wear a colourful tie to lift the team spirit and start the conversation. It is all about the tiny details that will comfort your team as you look put together and in control.
For working from home and video meetings, we recommend choosing a tie in a dark green with beautiful Bordeaux coloured thread going through the fabric. Such a necktie will give you a polished and professional look. Wear it with a shirt and a jumper or a cardigan during the colder months.
While some of us have returned to a full-time office environment, some are still working in a hybrid model combining remote working and office days. Regardless of the number of days a week you must travel to the office, use them as an opportunity to dress up. As rules regarding the office attire are becoming laxer, wearing a necktie is still a symbol of the extra effort you are making for your work, especially if you are client-facing.
Choose a breathable material for your tie to keep your body temperature in check throughout the day without overheating in the office. Get dressed and get ready to be noticed as someone who cares about the details both in the working life and how he dresses.
Choosing the right tie is an art: besides selecting the appropriate material for the season and occasion, one must also select the pattern and colours. Depending on your schedule, choose a tie to send a message. While bright colours will lift the mood, choosing a classic striped design, in deeper colours, would be perfect for meetings with superiors or clients.
Whether working from home or the office, accessorise your attire with a tie. You can still relax in sweatpants or chinos at home while still looking professional by wearing a shirt and a tie on top. At the office, wearing a tie means capability and will make you stand out, especially in these times when athleisure dressing dominates.
Follow the #DHGentsTies on Instagram for more tips and ideas on how to style your workwear ties. For more information on what to look for when choosing a winter tie, check out our second episode, Gentlemen's Ties: Autumn/Winter Ties.
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