• Cambridge Vintage Bridal

Bow Tie vs Tie : The Great Debate

Updated: Mar 10

The suit is picked, supplier deposits have been paid and the table plan is being re-worked on what feels like a daily basis - but, little did you know one of the tougher decisions lies ahead… bow tie or tie?


For some it might be an easy choice, if you wear a tie to work five days a week you might stick to that old faithful for the big day or naturally decide to mix it up with a bow tie. However, in the ‘dress down’ working era, not a lot of gents’ don neckwear unless the occasion calls for it.


Back in the day your choices for suits and neckwear were limited, and traditionally it would be a morning suit and a selection of satin ties or cravats to pick from, fun.


With grooms suit options transforming in the last decade and grooms being more involved than ever before in what they wear, the possibilities are endless… did you know there are over 177,000 ways to tie a tie?



At The Vintage Suit Hire Company, the chaps we see through the door for tweed suits are an even split on opting for a tie or bow tie, here’s our advice to consider when making your choice:


TIE KNOTS – Half Windsor or Four In The Hand? If you have a penchant for tie knots, then a tie is an obvious choice and you can show off your skills / impress the soon to be father in law all in one to four small steps.


PRE-TIED – Did you know 78% of all bow ties made are pre tied? Whilst some connoisseurs prefer to master the art of tying a bow tie, we know on the morning of the big day it’s much easier to simply hook it on and go, rather than stress about a lopsided bow tie.


SPACE FILLER - If you are opting for a three-piece suit, some gents prefer a tie to fill the space between your collar and the top of the waistcoat, and hey by the end of the night it will be round your head or discarded into a corner of the dance floor!


DAPPER - Bow ties add a distinguished look to your ensemble, and if you do opt to learn how to tie them, you can go for that classic draped around your neck look at the end of the night!


BEARD – If you’re a bearded fellow, then a bow tie could be lost under that glorious mane, opting for a tie will show your beard and accessories off to the fullest.


BRACE YOURSELF – Opting for chinos, braces and a jacket? A bow tie is ideal for this look otherwise your tie will be dipping into the grazing table selection before you’ve put anything on your plate.

It’s always best to try out different options, you could try a bow tie on and think, oh I look more substitute teacher than dapper groom! Fear not as this is the opportune time to decide to put the groomsmen in bow ties and yourself in a tie, the accessories matching the colour scheme keeps everyone cohesive and the subtle difference in neckwear makes you stand out from the rest of the group.

This option to mix it up also works both ways, if you are a bow tie kind of guy then you can pop the groomsmen in ties, either way you decide to deal the neckwear the little difference really makes an impact. (Think about those all-important photos!)


The vast range of colours patterns and textures available in both ties and bow-ties nowadays really opens up the possibilities for you to pick from and ultimately whichever you choose, the most important thing to remember is to find what’s right for you and showcases your own individual style on your big day.


Post written by The Vintage Suit Hire Company.

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