Dialectical Materialism II: Pursuing Ties

Earlier this week, David "Skulls" Colman declared in the Times that d tente has been reached in menswear for the first time since the French Revolution, or maybe the '70s: everybody's wearing slim suits. But leave it to the contrarians at Journal Pursuits to problematize things for the weekend; according to Ray A. Smith, the present era isn't one of tight jackets and low-slung trousers—it's about fat ties!

Apparently, trendsetters like U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly, and Jaden Smith (Will's son, not the one in "Just the Two of Us"— that one's disappeared) are all sporting Rubenesque knots. But unlike the effete skinny suit, the dubs-Windsor takes a real man to rock properly.

To wit:

You can't have the word "sunshine" in your name, or otherwise act like a scared little girl:


Mark Sunshine, president of a financial-services company and commercial lender based in West Palm Beach, Fla., says the big-knot look isn't for him though he likes the way it looks on others. "In light of what I do for a living, I would feel funny, like I was taking a risk," he says. Mr. Sunshine, who favors point-collar shirts, says a big knot might be seen as over-the-top at his company.
You can't be too small, or your cranium too big:
Stylists say that the thicker knots work better from some body types than others. "If you have a small frame or if you are on the short side, a big knot will overpower you," says stylist Clinton Kelly, co-host of TLC's "What Not to Wear." Big men with large heads also should avoid supersizing their knots so they don't look even wider, says Glenn Laiken, an image consultant and designer in Culver City, Calif., whose clients include Dr. Phil and pro-basketball coach Phil Jackson.
You can't not have a banal thing to say when some reporter asks you about neckwear:
Windsor fans say their knots are more prominent and less likely to slip throughout the day than other styles. "It shows off the tie a little more," says Mr. Kelly, the New York police commissioner, whose father taught him how to ties a Windsor. ESPN sports analyst and former NBA all-star Allan Houston says the Windsor know shows that the wearer is making an effort: It says, you're "taking it to a different level," he says.
Right. Also, is fun to look like a crook!


In the Windsor Circle: Big Knots Return
[WSJ]

EARLIER: Dialectical Materialism: Pursuits v. Sunday Styles
SEE ALSO: How That 'Slim Suit' Photoshoot Went Down: An Imagined Conversation