The 10 Tie Knots All Fashion Savvy Men Must Know

May 05, 2022 6 min read

Dandy & Son Shirt and Tie On Model For The 10 Tie Knots All Fashion Savvy Men Must Know

Stop using the same old knot you learnt at school!

There are so many different knot variations - and each one has its own unique look and feel. Some knots are suited to different outfits and are better for certain occasions than others. And yes... some are more difficult to learn than others, but the investment is worth it.

If you are looking for a complete guide on how to tie a tie, you won't find one. That's because there are 177,147 different possible ways to tie the knot of a necktie. A mathematician in Stockholm named Mikael Vejdemo-Johansson arrived at this conclusion with a small team in early 2014.

In this article, we will look at ten of the most popular tie knots out there. Whether you own silk, wool, or your very own Dandy and Son tie, there's a knot for you. We will also discuss when it is appropriate to wear each type of knot.

10 Different Tie Knots for MenPhoto by Ben Rosett on Unsplash

Types of Tie Knots, History, and Helpful Tips.

There are many types of knots and ties around the world. The four-in-hand knot is the most popular in the Western world, but it is not the only option. The half Windsor, full Windsor, and four-in-hand are all popular choices. Find out which one is right for you.

1. The Four-in-Hand Knot

Four-in-hand is named such because it was once used by carriage drivers who needed to hold four horses at once. The knot is simple and easy to tie. It can be worn with almost any type of mens dress shirt and suit combination.

The four-in-hand knot is one of the most popular tie knots. It is a simple knot that is easy to learn and quick to tie. The four-in-hand knot is best suited for casual occasions. Pro tip: you will only be moving the big (wide) end of the tie.

The Four In Hand Knot was first recognized as a fashion item in the 17th century when Croatians who traveled to King Louis XIII's palace in Paris wore scarves tied in this form for its simplicity and adaptability. It's simplicity, plainness and flexibility have contributed to its worldwide and historical appeal.

Four in Hand Tie Knot

Learn how to tie the Four-in-Hand Knot by watching this video here.

2. Full Windsor Knot (Double Windsor)

The Full Windsor knot, also known as the Double Windsor, is more complicated than the four-in-hand. This knot is best suited for formal occasions. Big enough to fill out a collar, the Full Windsor is proportionate and has an impactful triangular knot. A small wool tie will make your shirt pop, while silk is often too large for the Full Windsor. 

The Full Windsor is one of the most traditional and instantly recognizable tie knots. It received its royal name during the time of the Duke of Windsor, who was an avid advocate of this knot. Men at the time would copy his strong sense of style.

Full Windsor Tie Knot

Learn how to tie the Full Windsor Knot by watching this video here.

3. Half Windsor Knot

The Half Windsor is a variation of the Full Windsor. As the name suggests, it is not quite as large as the full knot. The Half Windsor is a good choice for those who want a formal look but do not have the neck size to pull off the Full Windsor. The benefit of the Half Windsor is that it can be worn with a wider variety of shirt collar types, unlike the Full Windsor. The best type of fabric to use for the Half Windsor is silk.

Learn how to tie the Half Windsor Knot by watching this video here. 

4. The Prince Albert knot

The Prince Albert knot gets its name from Prince Albert, the husband of Queen Victoria. This simple yet elegant knot is suitable for both formal and casual occasions. Prince Albert is a good choice for a neat, symmetrical look. This knot is also easy to tie and does not require a lot of fabric. The best fabrics for the Prince Albert knot are wool and silk.

The benefit of the Prince Albert knot is that it can be worn with a wide variety of shirt collar types.

Prince Albert Tie Knot

Learn how to tie the Prince Albert Knot by watching this video here.

5. Pratt Knot (Shelby Knot)

The Pratt knot is also known as the Shelby knot. It is suitable for both formal and casual occasions. The Pratt is named after its inventor, Jerry Pratt. In the late 1950s, he was a chamber of commerce employee. In 1986, 92-year-old Pratt taught it to television journalist Don Shelby, and it became a hit. This knot is easy to tie and is versatile enough to be worn with any shirt collar type.

The Pratt knot begins in the "reverse side out" position, like the Nicky knot, a self-releasing variant of the Pratt. The Pratt is claimed to be faster and easier to tie than the Nicky and results in a neater knot.

Learn how to tie the Pratt Knot (Shelby Knot) by watching this video here.

6. Small Knot

The Small knot is just that: small and simple. This is a good choice for those who want a quick, easy way to tie their tie. The Small knot is best suited for casual occasions. The benefit of the Small knot is that it can be worn with a wide variety of shirt collar types. So whether you are wearing one of our limited edition shirts or an extreme cutaway shirt, the Small knot will work for you.

The Small knot is also known as the Oriental, or Kent knot. It is similar to the Four In Hand knot but with an additional wrap around the "small" end of the tie.

Small Tie Knot

Learn how to tie the Small Knot by watching this video here.

"Fancier" Tie Knots

Above we looked at some of the more common tie knots. Now let's look at some of the "fancier" knots. These knots are not as well known but can add a touch of style to your outfit.

7. Trinity Knot

The Trinity knot is a more complicated version of the Small knot. This three-tiered knot is best suited for formal occasions. The Trinity knot is suited for those with a long neck and narrow face. The best fabrics to use for the Trinity knot are wool or silk, and wearing this type of tie is bound to turn heads.

Fun fact! The Trinity knot is in the shape of t
he Triquetra, which is an old religious symbol, dating back to the 9th century. It is found in the Book of Kells from and in the Norweigian stave churches (back in the 11th century). The Triquetra (also known as the Celtic Triangle), is one of the most lovely Celtic symbols and it features an interwoven continuous circle of three.


Trinity Tie Knot

Learn how to tie the Trinity Knot by watching this video here.

8. Eldredge Knot

The Eldredge knot is complicated and often elaborate. This knot is best suited for formal occasions such as weddings or banquets. The Eldredge is not for the faint of heart; it requires a lot of patience and practice to master. But once you know how it is done, heads will turn!

The Eldredge knot is a complex and intricate and will have people talking. It was created by Jeffery Eldredge in 2007 and has become one of the most popular knots, among the more complicated and fancier tie knots. The Eldredge Knot uses an unusual approach, manipulating the tiny end of the tie rather than the broad end. This knot portrays an elegant and luxurious persona from every angle.

Learn how to tie the Eldredge Knot by watching this video here.

9. The Van Wijk Knot

Requiring eleven steps to master, the Van Wijk knot is a less common choice. However, it is a good option for those who want something different and who likes a challenge. 

The artist Lisa van Wijk created the extremely towering and cylindrical tie to make the tallest wearable tie achievable. As a variation of the Prince Albert, you simply add a third turn to the end of the tieThis knot is best suited for casual occasions as it does convey an element of fun and excitement.

Learn how to tie the Van Wijk Knot by watching this video knot here.

10. Onassis Knot

Although not as well known, the Onassis knot is a good choice for those who want something different!

Named after Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis, the Onassis knot is a variation of the four-in-hand knot. This knot is suitable for both formal and casual occasions. The Onassis is easy to tie and does not require a lot of fabric.

Learn how to tie the Onassis Knot by watching this video knot here.

Choosing the Right Shirt for Different Tie Knots

With so many different tie knots to choose from, it can feel overwhelming. And apart from a good tie knot, you also need a nice dress shirt. Luckily, Dandy and Son is here to help. We stock the finest quality of shirts for our clients. Choose from the classic cutaway shirt, extreme cutaway collar shirtnon-iron shirt, or French cuff, to high-contrast, premium cotton, and shirts for the winter. Whatever your style is, you can find it here in our luxury shirt collection

So head over to our website and get yourself a new dress shirt and maybe a new tie and start mastering the skills of tie knotting! 

Pink Extreme Cutaway Collar Shirt

Are you a fan of the Windsor Knot? The Extreme Cutaway Collar Shirt from Dandy & Son provides room for wider knots which gives more options when styling your tie.⁠

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