I’m tall. 6’3″ or so. I like the look of a thicker knot in a necktie for some occasions, but if I try anything other than a four-in-hand I end up with a tie that is too short. I realize there are longer ties available, but that brings with it the limited options and history of bad fashion at big-and-tall shops. Any advice?
Sam, I myself am 6’3″, and don’t worry: there is help!
First of all: there’s nothing wrong with the four-in-hand. Best tie knot around. Versatile, rakish, handsome, never ostentatious. However, if you want to fill out a spread collar, a bigger knot is great to have in your repotoire.
I agree with you that avoiding big-and-tall shops is a great idea. Especially if you’re just tall – they tend to make clothes for people who are both.
Two sources for longer neckties come to mind. On the budget side, Land’s End is a great source. They offer many traditional necktie styles, and while their quality isn’t world-class, it’s very good for the price. Here’s a classic Churchill dot tie, for example – long size is only $19.99. You can also try some focused Ebay searching for long ties that may net some similar options.
If you’re willing to spend a bit more, you can get your ties made to your exact preferences by Sam Hober. They charge $80 for hand-made neckties in any length and width, so you can buy a tie that fits you perfectly. I bought the tie I wore in my wedding from Sam Hober, and while it took quite some time to arrive (the cost of bespoke), the quality is quite nice, and it’s a relief to have a tie with a rear blade that actually reaches past the keeper loop. Of course, Hober is also a great option for shorter men who have the opposite problem.
Hopefully some combination of these two will help keep you from looking like Oliver Hardy whenever you’re suited up.