Guy Files: How To Tie A Tie Like A Pro

 In Style

With spring upon us, there’s no shortage of dressy events to attend (perhaps Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis’ Dada Ball?). Therefore, one of the most essential skills a man should have is the ability to tie a tie. Weddings and other events of formal nature are abundant this time of the year and it’s important to keep your look sharp. Step-by-step instructions can be difficult to follow, so I’ve scoured through the millions of videos on YouTube to pinpoint the best tutorials for the most common knots. Anyone can complete these knots with ease—all it takes is a little practice.

image courtesy of

Photo courtesy of


How to Tie A Four-in-Hand Knot

This knot is the most casual and the easiest to tie. It has a slightly imperfect, elongated shape, making it perfect for a narrow-spread collar, plus it works well with skinny or medium-width ties. This style is perfect when pairing a dress shirt with a casual pant or denim. You can find thousands of videos online of people tying this knot, however, Alex Krasny is truly someone special: He teaches us to tie this knot in 6 seconds. I swear, it’s magic.


How to Tie a Half Windsor Knot

Like the Four-in-Hand, this knot is pretty easy to tie. It steps up your game with a symmetrical knot that is perfectly sized for most tie widths and collars. This knot is the go-to for job interviews and business meetings. If you don’t know how to tie this knot, Christine Kobzeff has you covered: That’s right, gentlemen, a lady is going to show you how it’s done. Pay attention to her hands and you’ll have it in no time!


How to Tie A Windsor Knot

Sometimes this knot is called a Full Windsor. This is another symmetrical knot, but it is wider than the Half Windsor. This knot is preferred at weddings, especially if you are the groom or a groomsman. The thick satin ties that pair with most formal wedding suits look best with this type of knot. Use this knot when you have a wide-spread collar, or when you uncover a box of your dad’s double-wide vintage ties from the ’70s. Watch Charles Brunold tie the Windsor Knot with ease in this video.  His accent is super-fancy, and you’ll probably be a bit fancier for hearing it.



How to Tie the Perfect Bow Tie

I’ve never understood what make this knot so intimidating to tie. The bow tie is actually pretty easy once you practice a couple of times. The secret is in the imperfection of your knot. It doesn’t have to be perfect, just secure. I can always clock a pre-tied bow tie because of its perfectly symmetrical, smooth knot.  This, my friends, is the equivalent of wearing a clip-on straight tie. Learn to tie it from these stylish guys at Pursuit in Columbus, Ohio.


Josh Nichols is a 15-year industry veteran who is a nationally recognized expert in hair styling. A St. Louis native, Josh attended Current Trends Academy and went on to become a top revenue stylist at the award-winning American Image Salon in Chesterfield. Josh opened his first salon—Josh Nichols Studio—in 2010. He has since expanded his services, added employees and relocated to Clayton, renaming his salon KINK Salon in 2012. His latest project, Notch, a men’s barbershop concept, opened August of 2014 in The Grove.

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