The history of knitted ties
At Tie Doctor, we have sold both knitted ties and knitted bow ties for over 4 years now and we always strive to improve our quality and variety of collection. However, although most customer that we interact with in our London base in Bricklane are often surprised to see this weird object which looks like the bottom is missing and frequently ask if this is a new innovation that we have created, they are always very surprised to hear that knitted ties have been around since the 1940s. We always keep a few of these 1940s vintage ties on our stall in order to show customers how this piece of knitted necktie has evolved over the last 75+ years.
In 1940s fashion [see below], we often see most men wearing the knitted tie far above the belt buckle area, an act which is often frowned upon in men’s fashion now. In this era, knitted ties tend to be mostly plain, a lot wider, mostly priced around 0.94c to $1.30 each and tended to be made from Rayon or as silk knitted ties. We should appreciate that these are old money prices and were relative of the times.
This style of knit ties has come a long way from then till now in the 2000s when we see how men’s fashion has appreciated this unique neckwear to be incorporated into their dress code. We often see a lot of different men and women with an extended collection of beautifully structured striped or polka dot pattern on the knit ties.
What are they knitted ties mostly known as?
Knitted ties are often referred to as sock ties due to their resemblance of a long length socks before being worn. They often tend to vary in width size from 3cm – 8cm (most common on vintage ties). Or knitted ties tend to range between 4.5cm - 6.5cm as we view these length as being perfect for the modern body build. Please feel free to email us if you would like to know which knitted tie would be the better fit for your body build. We highly recommend reading our blog on suits and lapel if you are interested on matching your tie to the lapel on your suit / suit jacket.
The best fabric for knitted ties
We often do extended research into knitted ties with different fabric and although most people have the notion that Silk knitted ties are better, this is not always the case. We have looked into and inspected the knitting and quality on different ties from different brands. This includes smaller brands and bigger, and it always surprises us that in a lot of instances silk ties are made very badly.
Apart the fact that some of our customers are not religiously allowed to wear silk and consequently will go for Polyester ties, we therefore believe in designing knitted ties in with all fabric in mind, Polyester, Silk, Rayon, Wool and sometimes a blend of these fabric. The benefit with Polyester knitted ties is that they can be washing machines however with other knit ties they have to be dry-cleaned.
Important things to consider when buying a knitted tie
As we now know and appreciate that knitted ties are a good addition to outfit, their are four important things to consider when buying a knit tie
- Material - This is touched on below but all materials are worth considering. On our online store we stock Silk, Rayon, Linen, Wool and Polyester knitted ties. Poly ties often get a bad reputation for the wrong reasons. We have found from years of experience that they keep very wwell and they are easy to machine wash. Saving money. However, Silk knitted ties tend to tie better due to their fineness. The problem with knitted ties is that it can be made / knitted badly and this applies to all materials. The one way we make sure we solve this problem is by having a large variety of material, thorough testing of our knitted ties and free returns - all customers are entitled to return any purchase within 30 days, however, if for any reason a customer is not satisfied with their purchase, we always want to learn why and although we do not frequently get returns, we will accept returns after 30 days as it gives us an opportunity to learn and improve our quality further
- Knot - Due to their thickness and length the knot styles are often restricted. We often recommend a simple knot so unfortunately most customer will not be able to experiment on tying their knit ties in the over 177,000 possible ways like you would with a traditional necktie
- Event - Knitted ties are very versatile and can therefore be worn to all types of event, however we do recommend a more conservative approach for dinners and important events. We often get customers in marketing who tend to play around with more colourful knitted ties whereas our friends in accountancy tend to be more conservative
- Length - Length is extremely important for two reason. Firstly due to the pattern on most knitted ties stopping in the middle of the tie, this restrict taller customer [over 6'2"] when they are experimenting with a knitted tie. Secondly, the length in general can sometimes be smaller than traditional niceties / neckties so we recommend that customers keep this into consideration when buying a knitted tie
- Shirt Collar - As some collars are often smaller, we recommend that the neck part of the knitted tie that sits under the collar is totally covered, The problem here stems from some knitted ties being too thick around the neck area which makes it awkward for the knitted tie to sit properly under the collar and be completely covered
Cleaning your knitted tie
We always recommend looking at the care label on the ties before washing them. For most of our customers because the knit tie sits under the collar of most men’s shirt, the necktie itself does not always need to be cleaned. However, the conversation of caring and cleaning a tie stems from if a food, dust or other unclean particles get unto the tie which makes it a must to clean. In this case we would recommend taking a bunch of ties to be dry cleaned as most laundrette will have the best method to clean the knit ties
Pointed Knit Ties
In 2015/16, after we had already been selling our knitted ties both on our stalls, with our stockist and online, we had a lot of customers; mainly our female clients who commonly bought the ties online and in the stall [for their husbands, boyfriends, dads, brothers and male friends] unsatisfied that the knitted ties had their short end. In this period, a lot of women would always compliment the knitted fabric on the ties and their uniqueness but would then hesitate to buy which we found very very strange! This led to us requesting and asking for feedback over the period of two – sixth months although we were initially against the idea of altering the knit ties from what they were initially meant to be but because we love having this feedback, as it helps us improve and because WOMEN ARE ALWAYS RIGHT – please gentleman, don’t forget this! We decided to take this advise on board which was highly welcomed and appreciated by a lot of men and women on our stall and online as it seem a lot of people had this feedback in mind but were not keen on sharing.
We are extremely thankful for this feedback as the launch our Silk Pointed Knitted Ties have been extremely appreciated. Pictured above is our best seller: Burgundy Red Knitted Tie. With our main best sellers being the burgundy, navy and the dark green, surprisingly to us! We have had to experiment with the colours on the knitted ties to make the red a darker shade – a burgundy knit tie, and the green has been altered to a darker green.
Our best look so far
We are always being tagged in post on our Instagram (@tiedoctor) and via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) with customers from all around the world with their fashion inspiration and how they have worn the knit ties. The burgundy knitted tie seems to always be the most pictured item, but we have listed a few our customers pictures and some of our Instagram inspiration on how the knitted ties have been worn best. Please let us know below which outfits are your favourite and how you would alter these looks to make them better?
For a clean look we often see customer match a plain knitted tie with plain pocket square. On the other hand, some customers prefer a splash of style to compliment their outfit, so a more flamboyant and colourful pocket square might be added to their suit jacket with a plain navy or burgundy knit tie for example. We would love to know more about your knitted tie collection and your outfit and style inspiration, so please let us know below!
Picture above is our dark green knitted tie. For more similar pictures please view our instagram profile @tiedoctor
If you have any other questions about our knitted ties please don’t hesitate to drop us an email. We are always happy to help and learn new things!