This post was written by Lindy Dandy.
I don’t usually look at clip on bow ties, but after LS’s post on 1950’s bow ties, I’ve decided to give them another chance.
I’ll be honest, I’ll pick a self-tie bow tie over a clip on any day of the week. I like that self tie bow ties cannot be tied symmetrically; I appreciate the imperfections. (The concept of wabi-sabi has always agreed with me, I suppose). Besides, tying a tie is no longer seen as particularly difficult; clip ons feel like cheating to me. When I untie my bow tie at the end of a night of dancing, girls are pretty impressed that I know how to tie it myself. That said, clip on bow ties aren’t as much of an egregious affront to my aesthetic as say, clip on ties. Yuck.
Bow ties aren’t seen often enough anymore, relegated to the stereotypes of nerds and college professors (who can actually have great style). Bow ties are seen as unusual, but I see that as an advantage. Wear one well and you’ll be noticed. Bow ties are classy. There’s a reason they’re the first choice for black tie events. If the fear of tying a bow tie is holding you back, then go for a clip on.
No matter what, pick one that is proportionate to your face, collar, jacket lapels and everything else. (Basically, try not to look like a clown). You can usually find more interesting patterns in clip ons than self ties; in fact, most of the art deco bow ties I’ve found are clip on. Most vintage clip on bow ties you’ll find will be skinny and narrow, fitting the style of the slick, “modern,” Jet age of the 50s and 60s. (Think Rat Pack; though they also wore self tie bow ties).
I don’t own any clip on bow ties, but I might make an exception for some of these. As you’ll see, I’m only posting auctions with multiple bow ties (which can also be referred to as “lots”… Get it?).
Ok, I’ll be on the lookout for self tie bow ties next time. Happy hunting!