I was chatting with a good friend the other day how I never wear ties any more. I have a boat load of them from the days when I did, but they slowly phased out of my day to day wardrobe. Sometimes I miss them.
We threw about a few ideas as to why they were invented in the first place, none of which turn out to be correct. My friend suggested I post about the history of the tie. So Martin, here is your post. I'll keep it brief, though that could itself be a whole other post...
It seems Ancient Egypt had the first known neck tie - a rectangular piece of regular cloth wrapped around the neck and draped over the shoulder a bit like a shawl. It represented social status. China had a form as well, noted from around 220BC. But the modern tie stems more from a fashion statement by the military in Croatia in the 17th century which was noted by the French and copied. They must have found the Croatians sexy.
The ties were worn in a lot of different shapes and styles with loads of different ways to tie them.
Up until the 19th century, the styles mostly included country symbols and were tied in ways that represented the social status of the wearer. I wonder if a certain knot indicated sexual persuasion...
The modern necktie developed its shape in 1924 when New Yorker Jessie Langsdorf patented a style of cloth and cut, made in 3 parts which were sewn together to form the now worldwide fashion item.
And maybe, having researched some of the uses of it (ie the photos for this post) I might have developed a new interest in Ties, and the men who wear them.