The Grenadine Tie - An Ultimate Cheat Sheet
If you're not very familiar with the range of ties available, you probably don't know the difference between a grenadine tie and any other tie. However, if you want to make the most out of any outfit, it's worth knowing your grenadine ties from your knitted ties. By becoming more familiar with the different ties you can wear, you'll be able to make the best choice for any outfit, whether you're going to the office or to a wedding. A grenadine tie is a silk tie that's perhaps best known for being a favorite of James Bond. You don't have to be Bond to make a grenadine look good, though. All you need to know are a few tips on how to identify a grenadine and when and how to wear it.
What Is a Grenadine Tie?
Firstly, you need to understand what a grenadine tie is. To the untrained eye, you could line up several different types of ties, and they would all just look like ties. However, you don't have to look very hard to notice differences in quality, feel and appearance. A grenadine tie is made from Italian silk that has been woven, as opposed to having been knitted, in a gauze (or leno) weave.The weave is open so that the tie has something of a dotted or textured look. The grenadine material offers a more formal look than a knitted tie, but it can still be worn in a wide range of situations. There are only two mills that weave real grenadine silk, both in Como, Italy both using ancient wooden looms. Much in demand, these small mills can only weave so much grenadine a year. This makes a real grenadine tie a pretty special and unique item to own.
Grenadine Materials and Weave
Grenadine ties are made from silk, but also use other materials to form different parts of the tie. For example, the interlining of the tie, which goes in between the outer fabric and the finishing lining, is usually made from wool in a grenadine tie. The wool helps to give the tie its shape and avoid any wrinkling so that the tie stays smart throughout the day. The wool is also dyed the same color as the silk. The silk of a grenadine tie can have one of two main types of weave: garza grossa and garza fina. If you have any Italian or language knowledge, you can probably guess that garza grossa is a looser weave than the garza fina. You can also find garza Prometeo and garza piccola, but these are less common.
Choosing Between garza Grossa and garza Fina
So, should you select garza grossa or garza fina for your tie? There are benefits of both, but there are also some other things to think about. Sean Connery as James Bond preferred the looser weave, but it's important to consider that they might not be the best tie to hold up during his adventurous escapades. The looser weave of a garza grossa grenadine tie can mean that it's more prone to snagging. So while the tie can look great, it can be a little more difficult to look after it. The garza fina gives you a tie that will last for longer and still looks smart.
The Textured Look of a Grenadine Tie
One of the appeals of a grenadine tie is that it has an attractive textured look. It looks a little like a knitted tie, but knitted ties are generally regarded as being a lot more casual. The texture of the tie can mean having to be careful to take it into account when you're deciding when it's appropriate to wear grenadine silk ties. You might be concerned about what textures and patterns you can pair your tie with. However, you don't have to worry about it too much, especially if you've chosen a solid color tie instead of one with a pattern.
Mock Grenadine Ties
You can also find mock grenadine ties, which are an imitation of the real Italian ties. It has a similar texture to the real thing, but it doesn't have an open weave. These ties are also less likely to be woven in Italy. You might choose a mock grenadine tie if you're looking to save money, but it really is worth spending a bit more on the real thing.
Solid Colors vs. Patterns
Grenadine ties are available with patterns, but most style experts recommend a solid color, especially for your first tie. If you do want to choose a patterned tie, you're likely to find some rather delicate options, instead of anything that has a very obvious and large pattern. You can try some patterns of small dots or perhaps a subtle stripe. For something a little louder, you could consider a tartan or stripes in multiple colors. However, when you're first looking at grenadine ties, consider getting something like a solid navy tie. It will be versatile, so you won't have to spend too long working out how to wear it.
Selecting the Right Color
Of course, even if you choose a solid tie, you need to get the right color. If you're building a collection, you can eventually own grenadine ties in a few different colors. However, if you're just choosing your first one, you might want to think carefully about which one is the best shade. As mentioned before, navy works well for your first tie because it's so versatile. While black can be paired with a lot of things too, it can be seen as a bit severe. It does work well for a funeral, wedding or another type of formal event, though. Another classic color is the wine grenadine tie, which is a deep red color which can work well. You might also consider gray, other shades of blue or even brown. Remember to look at different shades of the same color to find one that works for you.
Choosing the Right Knot
Whenever you wear a tie, choosing the right knot is an important part of your outfit. If you're an experienced tie wearer, you've probably tried out a few different knots before. However, if not, you might have learned how to tie a tie with the four-in-hand knot. This is good news for grenadine silk ties because it's often recommended as the best knot to use. It gives you a knot that's not too big and is slightly asymmetrical. It works for a grenadine tie because the material is thick and you don't want to make the knot thicker. In short, the wide end of the tie goes over, under and over the narrow end, then through the loop at your neck and down through the loop you've just made.
Grenadine Ties for Formal Occasions
Grenadine ties are generally regarded as being more formal, but that doesn't mean you can only wear them at weddings and funerals. Although they are a good choice for the most formal occasions, they also work well for doing business, going out to dinner or even working behind the bar of a 5-star hotel. It's up to you to work out which occasions you think your grenadine ties are best suited to. They can give your suit the extra edge that it needs for a job interview, and it can even be a good conversation starter, with its smart look.
How to Wear a Grenadine More Casually
Some people will say that a grenadine tie isn't suitable for a more casual outfit. But you don't need to be super dressed up to make grenadine ties work. They're also a good choice for a smart-casual look, even if you're not going to wear it with cargo shorts and a t-shirt. If you want to create a slightly more casual look with Italian grenadine ties, you can consider pairing them with sports jackets or chinos. You can also wear a grenadine tie with knitwear, as long as it's nothing too casual.
Matching Your Tie to Your Shirt
If you're feeling a bit unsure, you might need to think about one of the most basic but important parts of wearing a tie. You need to make sure your tie doesn't clash with your shirt. If you have a solid colored grenadine tie, this is immediately made much easier. You don't have to worry about coordinating your patterns. However, you do still need to think about color. Although it's often best to choose your shirt first, if you're determined to wear a particular tie, you can start with that. There are no hard or fast rules about which colors go together, so use your eye. If you're not sure, ask someone else to check. As for patterns, it's best to pair large patterns with smaller ones so that you don't have two similar-sized patterns battling for dominance.
A grenadine tie might be slightly more suited to a formal look, with its silk weave. However, that doesn't mean you have to limit its use. You can find many ways to wear one both formally and for less formal occasions, whether you're going to a business meeting or on a date. If you're looking for your very first grenadine tie, opt for something simple and versatile so that you can wear it with a wider selection of outfits. A navy tie in garza fina is a perfect choice.