When it comes to choosing a bow tie, there are many aspects to consider. The colour, the shape, the fabric, the pattern, etc. But before all that, there is one major criteria : do you want it to be pre-tied or self-tied ? Let’s see what are the differences, pros and cons.
The difference between pre-tied and self-tied
A pre-tie bow tie is a bow that can’t be untied. How is it made ? One main piece of fabric, usually a simple rectangle, forms the body of the bow tie. If you picture the bow tie as a butterfly, that would be the wings. Then a small piece of fabric squeezes the middle of the main one to form the center of the bow (or the body of the butterfly). That makes the bow tie, which is then attached to a neck band.
You’ve now probably guessed that a self-tie bow tie is tied manually and therefore can be untied. The whole bow, including the neck strap, is made in one single piece.
Pre-tied vs self-tied : pros and cons
The obvious advantage of a pre-tie bow tie is that you don’t have to know how to tie it. It’s undeniably quicker and hassle-free. You have no risk of doing it badly, as it will always stay as is it, straight and symmetrical. But it has two huge disadvantages that should convince you to switch to “real” bow ties.