A tie or necktie is a long piece of cloth worn for decorative purposes around the neck or shoulders, resting under the shirt collar and knotted at the throat. Variants include the ascot tie, bow tie, bolo tie, zipper tie, cravat and the clip-on tie. The modern necktie, ascot, and bow tie are descended from the cravat. Neck ties are generally unsized, but may be available in a longer size. Men and boys wear neckties as part of regular office attire or formal wear. Neckties can also be worn as part of a uniform (e.g. military, school and waitstaff), whereas some choose to wear them as everyday clothing attire. Neckties are traditionally worn with the top shirt button fastened, and the tie knot resting between the collar points. Among younger men, neckties are sometimes worn as a casual item, tied loosely around the neck, with the top shirt button unfastened.
There is a long history of neckwear worn by soldiers (Roman), whether as part of a uniform or as a symbol of belonging to a particular group. Some form of neckwear other than the outdoor scarf can be traced intermittently through many centuries.
The modern necktie spread by Europe traces back to the time of the Thirty Years’ War (1618–1648) when Croatian mercenaries from the Croatian Military Frontier in French service, wearing their traditional small, knotted neckerchiefs, aroused the interest of the Parisians. Due to the slight difference between the Croatian word for Croats, Hrvati, and the French word, Croates, the garment gained the name “cravat” (“cravate” in French).The boy-king Louis XIV began wearing a lace cravat about 1646, when he was seven, and set the fashion for French nobility. This new article of clothing started a fashion craze in Europe; both men and women wore pieces of fabric around their necks. From its introduction by the French king, men wore lace cravats, or jabots, that took a large amount of time and effort to arrange. These cravats were often tied in place by cravat strings, arranged neatly and tied in a bow.
International Necktie Day is celebrated on October 18 in Croatia and in various cities around the world, e.g. in Dublin, Tübingen, Como, Tokyo, Sydney and other towns.
How to Tie a Tie – gallery ( click on picture )