Ties have about as many different personalities as people which is good because it makes it that much easier to choose a tie and knot that suits you specifically. There are several factors including the color, pattern, thickness and knot. We’ll cover all of these eventually but today let’s focus on the knot. To keep it even more simple we’ll just talk about the thickness and go into the different types of knots soon.
Your tie knot thickness should be based on a few things:
Your neck size: this one isn’t hard to figure out. A small knot gets dwarfed by a big neck, so go thick if you’ve got a thick neck. Me personally, I’ve got a long skinny neck I can barely find the right collar size for. This means I stick with a thin knot and it works well for me.
The shape of your collar: a broad collar needs a broad knot, narrow collar need a thin knot. Simple enough. Basically if your collar spreads out wide you want to go with a Windsor or something similar. When your collar opens with a smaller angle, go thinner with a Four in Hand Knot. We’ll cover all the options down the road.
Personal preference: maybe you just feel like a skinny knot guy. No problem. Go with your gut especially if you feel like a particular thickness suits your outfit better. I had a groom once who just wanted an insanely thick Windsor knot and didn’t have a really great reason for it. He tied it crazy thick, used his vest to cover up an embarrassingly short tie length and it looked great.
In the end what matters is that you look in the mirror and it feels right. Knot thickness is one of those things that doesn’t require any expertise or instinct in men’s fashion. Usually you just know it looks off and if it does, pull it out and try again.