Want to wear the perfect tie knot with your formal outfits? Keep reading to learn how to tie the Full Windsor.
The Full Windsor is a large, triangular knot. Due to its symmetrical look, it’s considered the perfect knot for serious business environments and other highly formal occasions.
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This know is also known as the Double Windsor or just the Windsor (as opposed to its younger brother, the Half Windsor). And, while most people assume it’s a difficult knot to learn, it’s actually easier than it looks.
This large knot is best suited for spread collar or cutaway collar shirts. Since it doesn’t wrap tight around the neck, it’s more comfortable than most other knots (despite its formal appearance).
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Full Windsor vs. Half Windsor
There are some key differences between the two that are important to know.
Here's what you need to know…
- More formal
- Larger knot
- Looks better on men with long and wide necks
- Requires more fabric to tie the knot
- Perfect knot for a thick tie
- Less formal
- Smaller knot
- Looks better on men with small necks
- Requires less fabric to tie the knot
- Better knot for a thin tie
As you can see, both knots have their place depending on the occasion.
When Should You Use This Knot?
The Full Windsor knot looks best when you’re dressed up in either a spread collar or a cutaway collar shirt. They give silk ties and ties with dark colors and spaced out patterns an elegant look.
The Full Windsor is symmetrical and large, making it the perfect knot if you want to command people’s attention.
Because of its large size and bold appearance, it looks best on men with wider faces (square or round) and men with facial hair.
It will also work well on you if you have a wide neck and broad shoulders, as its appearance reduces the perceived width of the neck.
When Should You Not Use This Knot?
Full Windsor knots are large. If you happen to have a very thin neck, this large knot will not look flattering on you.
We also wouldn’t recommend using this knot with a tweed or knitted tie. On those fabrics, Full Windsor knots look bulky and unappealing.
They also don’t work with skinny ties since the knot will be disproportionately large compared to the rest of the tie.
The Windsor doesn’t work for ties with bright, gaudy patterns either. It creates a jarring effect and shifts people’s attention away from your face.
How to Tie a Full Windsor Knot
Drape the tie around your neck. Let the wide end hang about 14 inches past the narrow end.
Cross the wide end over (in front of) the narrow end.
Push the wide end up through the loop around your neck.
Pull the wide end out and over the right side of loop.
Now cross the wide end behind the narrow end and pull it to the other side (to your left). The back side of your tie’s wide end must be visible in the mirror.
Take the wide end and pass it again over the loop around your collar. You're forming the other side of the triangular knot.
Pull the wide end tight (but not too tight) through to your left.
Pass the wide end over the front of the knot to create a horizontal bar – the front of the triangle.
Now push it up through the back of the loop around your collar.
Tuck the wide end through the bar you just created at the front of the knot.
Pull down gently on the wide end to tighten your knot.
Hold the narrow end and push the knot up towards your collar to finish. Pinch the top of the wide end, just under the knot, to create a dimple.
To finish, slip the narrow end of your tie through the keeper loop behind the wide end.
Your Full Windsor knot is now complete.
Your tie should hang around your belt line or slightly above it. If it’s longer than that, reduce the initial distance between the wide and narrow end when you first drape the tie around your neck. If it’s too short, increasing the gap should help.
The Full Windsor has a lot more steps than a knot like the Simple Knot, but it pays off the go the extra mile and look appropriate for the occasion.
A Full Windsor knot projects an authoritative image because of its large size and symmetrical appearance. This makes it a fantastic choice for formal functions, especially if you have a broad neck and face.
Now you know how to tie the Windsor Knot! It might take you a few tries to get comfortable tying it, but it’s an all time classic that’s definitely worth the effort.