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Knitwear for the neck

Timothy Barber
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NOT very long ago, knitted ties were seen as pretty much a no-go area for anyone other than the fustiest of ageing academics, but no more. The the skinny tie trend – initially a casual look, but given smart, retro credibility by Don Draper and co from Mad Men – has made the straight lines and perpendicular angles of the knitted style quite the thing. The real beauty of the knitted tie, however, is its texture. Normally made with wool or cashmere knitted into tight loops, the ties have more depth and subtlety than a normal woven number, and they’re lighter to wear and beautiful to touch too.

Nor do you have to stick to dour, conservative colours. Even Ede & Ravenscroft, the ancient London tailor which has clothed more fusty, ageing academics than most, has brought out a line of bright, snappy knitted ties for its spring/summer collection – in light colours, they look especially sharp with a summery linen suit. But they work with a more formal suit as well. Wear them with a plain shirt, since stripes or patterns will over-complicate things, and accessorise with a simple tie clip which will hold the light material in place, and works with the tie’s straight lines to create a very
crisp look.