To those of you who find history hard to swallow, we'll make this lesson easy to swallow and maybe even sweet...Short and sweet.
The necktie was introduced during war time. The Croatians were observed by Parisians wearing "Cravats" as they are commonly referred to today (knotted neckerchiefs). This fashion quickly caught on in Europe and men and women began wearing fabric around their necks. Soon men were wearing lace cravats, which eventually lead to the wearing of the "Steinkirk", a fancy name for a twisted cravat. For these, they twisted the ends of the fabric together and passed the twisted ends through a jacket buttonhole.
Next, "Stocks" became popular. Initially, a stock was just a small piece of fabric folded into a narrow band wound a few times around the shirt collar and secured at the back with a pin.
Then, thanks to the young Englishmen who returned from Europe sometime in the late eighteenth century, the cravat made an appearance once again.
Then came bow ties, scarves, the ascot and then in the 1900's what we commonly know as the "Necktie" became popular. Different designs, colors, widths, lengths, fabrics and styles have come in and out of fashion over the last century, but the necktie continues to fit many Gentlemen from CEO's all the way to the regular Joe's wearing them for many different reasons and occasions. By the way, Americans spend more than $1 billion each year to buy a staggering 100 million ties. There are roughly 300 million Americans, so you do the math. If I do it, I come up with 1 tie per every 3 people. Wow!
Bow ties are another accessory in the 20th century that a Gentleman doesn't want to be without. Unfortunately, tying a bow tie is a dying art. Very few men today know how to tie a bow tie themselves, thus driving up the sales of clip-on and pre-tied bow ties. The professional "bow-tiers" however, brag that there's nothing quite like tying your own bow. Besides a great sense of satisfaction and an heir of ability, it allows you to adjust the size as well as the bow's spread in a way that perfectly fits your collar shape and size.
There are many variations of spelling bow-ties, bow ties, bowties, Bow-tie, but this isn't a spelling lesson. Don't worry about the spelling, just get on your way to being an accomplished "bow-tier". Buy one now and start practicing the dying art of tying a bow-tie. You'll impress everyone at your next black tie affair once they hear that you've tied your own bow-tie! Way to go!
So there you are, this history lesson wasn't so hard after all, was it?