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Though bow ties were invented for the functional purpose of holding the collars of men's shirts together in the 17th century, they're synonymous with formalwear. Most famously, bow ties are the finishing touch to a tuxedo which, for most men, is a look reserved for black-tie weddings, be it their own or that of a friend or family member. Of course, certain men routinely don bow ties as a means to showcase their personal style while others attend events and soirees where the formal neck fixture is par for the course. For those who don't veer as formally, it can be tricky to figure out the right kind of bow tie for you.
Whether you're the groom, a groomsman, or a wedding guest, wedding bow ties can go in many directions. If you're the traditional type, a black or white bow tie is undoubtedly your best bet. Shades of grey and navy are rather timeless, too, as are subtle patterns like stripes or polka dots. For the statement maker, a more striking bow tie will be up your alley; whimsical motifs, bolder colors, and luxe textures like velvet or satin all stand out. Then, of course, there's the man with modern taste. A refined and uncomplicated bow-tie with a slimmer cut will suit him best, whether in classic black, a deep jewel tone, or a subtle texture. For the guy whose all about simplifying the process of formalwear, a pre-tied bow tie is unquestionably the way to go.
Whether you have a specific style of bow tie in mind or require a little more inspiration, keep scrolling for our edit of the best wedding bow ties from timeless to bold, with options selected for every budget.
Most Universal: Saks Fifth Avenue Collection Pre-Tied Grosgrain Silk Bow Tie
Department stores like Saks Fifth Avenue are an excellent one-and-done place to get all of your tuxedo essentials like this pre-tied bow tie. The grosgrain ribbon is a sophisticated choice for those that don't want a shinier fabric like silk.
For a Fall Wedding: Calvin Klein Wine Grosgrain Pre-Tied Bow Tie
A colorful bow tie is an excellent option for the groom and groomsman when coordinating with a bridal party. This rich wine hue is an attractive choice in the fall or winter.
For a Black-Tie Wedding: Ralph Lauren Purple Label Barathea Bow Tie
Ralph Lauren's Purple label is an elegant go-to for formalwear, and this sleek bow tie is no exception. For a bolder wedding look, we love it with a white tuxedo jacket with black lapels.
For a Classic Wedding: Bottega Veneta Silk Bow Tie
Minimal and sleek, this Bottega Veneta bow tie is perfect for the classic groom with designer taste. The textured silk and slimmer cut take it in a timeless yet modern direction.
For a Winter Wedding: Tommy Hilfiger Pre-Tied Solid Bow Tie
Simple, sleek, and affordable, this navy bow tie by Tommy Hilfiger is fail-safe for grooms, groomsmen, and wedding guests. The deep hue is a stylish alternative to black or grey.
For a Nautical Wedding: Brooks Brothers Rep Bow Tie
For a dapper wedding look with a dash of prep, this striped bow tie is a classic. We can picture it on a groom, groomsman, or guest at an oceanfront venue.
In the market for a bow tie? We've answered three common questions people have when shopping for them.
- Is a bow tie appropriate for a wedding? Definitely, especially if the dress code is formal or even black tie.
- What are the different types of bow ties? There are typically three categories: pre-tied, clip on, and the self tie. Within those categories there are also various fabrics, shapes, and styles to choose from.
- Is tying a bow tie hard? While trickier than a necktie, it's not that difficult to learn how to tie a bow tie. There are plenty of video tutorials online and, if you really can't get the hang of it, there are always pre-tied or clip on options.