Black Tie

When the invitation reads "black tie", a fashion critic once observed that "its a command, not a request, and only the very rich, brave, or foolish dare defy it." In 1886, the first tuxedo was worn. More than 100 years later, the proper attire for most formal occasions remains virtually the same as the 19th century original. This is: a black jacket and matching trousers, worn with a white formal shirt with a black waistcoat, or whiite tie with a white waistcoat. The tie matches the facings of the tux. Another touch of fashion for the gent is a short cape, a walking stick, spats, gloves, and a top hat. Puttin' on the Ritz!

 As for a pre-tied, or worse, (gag) clip-on tie-- forget it! The trousers' waistband should be hidden beneath a waistcoat or a cummerbund. The cummerbund is worn with the pleats facing up. The proper shoe is the formal pump with a grosgrain bow or any black formal shoe, and , of course, black socks. 

1. Adjust so that one end is longer than the other, crossing long over short end.

2. Bring the long end through center at top.
3. Form single loop with short end, and bring long end over.
4. Form loop with end and push through in back.
5. Adjust ends and tighten bow. The bow is completed!