Black tie. What clown did not realise that means a Bowtie?

BuggerAll

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#1
Why are so many men wearing long black ties with dinner jackets? Has anyone had the nerve to turn up at a mess with one - I hope he was lynched with it. Where has this fashion come from?

Is it possible that some clown got an invitation to a black tie do and did not realise that he was supposed to wear a bow tie? If this was the case why did anyone else copy him?
 
#2
Surely one only keeps a 'long' black tie for funerals?

One hopes that officers would know better!
 
#3
Better still if it's a clip-on bow tie; that can be a source of merriment as you set fire to a collected pile of them :)
 
#4
Look on the bright side; at least it wasn't one of those strange bootlace things that Texans wear!
 

BuggerAll

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#5
I've some sympathy with the bootlace. The wearer, presumably, is aware that he is defying convention and that is what he intends to do. The wearer of the 'long' black tie is either an ignorant prat or a foolish follower of fad.
 
#7
I can confess to having done it, almost.

In my defence, I'm a student; I only have one black bow tie, it was muddy from a party the night before the dinner, and my apparently black tie was - in fact - very dark green and the room ill-lit.

Fair defence?
 
#8
I first noticed this phenomena with the likes of Wayne Rooney at David and Posh's last bash.
I am sure it all began with misunderstanding what *Black Tie* means.
 
#9
duffdike said:
I first noticed this phenomena with the likes of Wayne Rooney at David and Posh's last bash.
I am sure it all began with misunderstanding what *Black Tie* means.
Well, they're hardly gentry are they? I suppose they knew no better.
 
#10
I wore a Texan bootlace thingy, with a skull as the centrepiece, to an HAC ball in the 90s.

My excuse was that, despite being in the Regiment, I was also in the regimantal rock band, and we were playing that night. I thought it looked rather natty.

Sensibly, the HAC don't have any form of tie in mess dress, so I didn't have one cut especially to tie in a bow.

Of course, if you want to trace it all back, a tie is just that, a tie, ie a piece of cloth which, almost inexplicably, became fashionable to wear around the neck, in many different ways.

The "dinner" thing required, in late Victionaian and early Edwardian eras, a tie to be tied in a bow, hence the bow tie.

But if you look back, it was considered quite proper before that, to wear a mad big frilly black silk hanging thing, tied in almost any way you fancied, infact, the more modern kiltmakers are encouraging the use of just such a tie at dinner.

So let's not all jump to conclusions.

I know what you mean about the shiny-suited ones though.

There is a big difference in wearing something mad and effete, which was probably all the rage in days of yore, and just turning up as if you are a footballer going to the funeral of a chum who fatally crashed his Ferrari.
 
#12
I thought there was nothing worse than the matching ready-made coloured bow tie and cummerbund (invariably pronounced 'cumberband' by those who buy and wear such things) set, but I see that I was wrong.
 
#14
londonirish said:
I wore a Texan bootlace thingy, with a skull as the centrepiece, to an HAC ball in the 90s.

My excuse was that, despite being in the Regiment, I was also in the regimantal rock band, and we were playing that night. I thought it looked rather natty.

Jebus. I don't know what's worse. Londonirish wearing a skull bootlace combo or the knowledge that the HAC had a rock band. You'll be telling us that the Pope's not catlick next.....
 
#15
I thought there was nothing worse than the matching ready-made coloured bow tie and cummerbund (invariably pronounced 'cumberband' by those who buy and wear such things) set, but I see that I was wrong.
Even if the said set is a spectacular example of 1970's fashion in dark green, swirly velour? I have found the oversized (and might I add cushioned!!) bow tie provides a very satisfactory chin pillow for after-dinner speeches. :oops:
 
#16
DavetheApe said:
londonirish said:
I wore a Texan bootlace thingy, with a skull as the centrepiece, to an HAC ball in the 90s.

My excuse was that, despite being in the Regiment, I was also in the regimantal rock band, and we were playing that night. I thought it looked rather natty.

Jebus. I don't know what's worse. Londonirish wearing a skull bootlace combo or the knowledge that the HAC had a rock band. You'll be telling us that the Pope's not catlick next.....
Probably the latter. We were alright, but we were'nt really very good. Got people dancing though. Or they might have been jerking involuntarily becase of the awful cacophony.

And the Pope isn't catholic. He's Hitler Jugend, as any fule no's.
 
#17
OMG now we really are going to the dogs :D

Since when were we ex-Ruperts and serving Ruperts suposed to look trendy? I remember an Adjt smiling during game of Mess Rugger - he was smiling because al of the Subbies were wearing those multi-coloured sleeved shirts.

Extras all round amd job done for the next month.
 
#18
rickshaw-major said:
OMG now we really are going to the dogs :D

Since when were we ex-Ruperts and serving Ruperts suposed to look trendy? I remember an Adjt smiling during game of Mess Rugger - he was smiling because al of the Subbies were wearing those multi-coloured sleeved shirts.

Extras all round amd job done for the next month.
OMG, what multi-coloured sleeved shirts?
 
#19
Those multi coloured sleeve mess kit shirts are the bees knees. On sale in Jermyn St - Hacketts etc. Very harsh to be giving extras. Removing your mess kit jacket is not a proper form of dress anyway. But they are all the rage now I understand. Very popular in the Andrew.
 
#20
As a new arrival to the Mess, might I endeavour to reassure you gentlemen on the messages being passed?

Despite there really (in my humble opinion) being no need, it was made clear to me verbally and in writing, no less that clip-on bow ties would not be countenanced at any event connected, however faintly, with the mess. Not, I hasten to add, as a result of my having committed this awful sin.

I'd have to encourage any young (or old) officer who displays the panache and independence to interpret this as meaning a funeral tie would be acceptable - as such individuals would inevitably, if only temporarily, distract the attention of the PMC from my generalised sartorial indifference.

Would anyone still alive (having waded through this post) care to advise me on the whole cummerbund issue?
 
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