The history, style and a guide on tying the Half-Windsor necktie knot.
The Half Windsor, or single Windsor, is one of the less used necktie knots. This is unfortunate, as it shares much of the same prestige as the full Windsor but appears as having less pretense. This makes it a solid choice for everyday menswear.
The History of the Half-Windsor Knot
The Half Windsor knot was possibly created as an attempt to simplify the steps of the Windsor knot. The Half-Windsor gathered prominence in the gray business suits of the 1950’s. This was likely due to the fact that the crisp, clean focal point that the knot creates gives it an air of power in any business situation.
A Closer Look at the Half Windsor Knot
In The 85 Ways to Tie a Tie, by Thomas Fink and Yong Mao the Half-Windsor is known as knot numbers seven (Li Ro Ci Lo Ri Co T) and eight (Li Ro Ci Ro Li Co T). The Half-Windsor creates a moderately sized symmetrical triangle shaped knot. This knot is larger than the four in hand, but smaller than the full Windsor. And despite the misnomer, the Half Windsor is not half the size of the full Windsor. Rather it is about 75% of the size. This makes it a better proportional choice for taller men, or those who have more height in their chest, as uses less of the necktie than the Windsor.
How to Tie the Half-Windsor knot
Traditional Half Windsor
Step One: Begin with the wide end of the tie on the right side. Keep it about six to eight inches lower than the smaller end.
Step Two: Cross the large end of the tie over the small end. Then continue to bring the wide end of the tie underneath to form a half loop.
Step Three: Bring the wide end of the tie over the collar line and slip it through the center near the neckline. If done correctly, the tie will end up on the left upside down.
Step Four: Now, with the wide end of the tie on the left side, firmly pull it across the half triangle that was formed. This will form the other end of the triangle.
Step Five: Bring the wide end back through the collar area and down through the center of the triangle that was formed.
Step Six: To tighten, use one hand to pull down gently on the wide end of the tie. With the other hand, push the knot toward the collar line. Don’t forget to form the dimple, as this will add class to your Half Windsor.
How to Tie a Half Windsor Knot | Art of Manliness
Self Releasing Half-Windsor
Step One: Begin as above by crossing the wide part of the tie over the narrow end.
Step Two: Loop the wide end of the tie through the center.
Step Three: This is where it varies from the traditional tying. Continue the loop, ending up with the wide end of the tie on the right side. If done correctly, half of the triangular knot will be formed and the underside of the tie will be showing.
Step Four: Cross the wide end of the tie over the center. Bring it back under the narrow side of the tie. This will form the other side of the triangle.
Step Five: Finish the tying the Half-Windsor by tucking the wide end through the center of the triangle.
Step Six: Tighten as above.
When to Wear the Half Windsor
The Half Windsor works perfectly for moderately formal situations. The smaller symmetrical knot provides a nice compliment to most medium sized faces. The triangular knot also adds a bit of vertical height to a squat face, evening out the proportions.
Because of the smaller size of the knot, the Half-Windsor works well with standard spread and button down collars. Taller men will also find the Half Windsor helpful, as it uses less material than the full Windsor. Overall, the Half-Windsor is a well thought out knot choice that the average man can add to his repertoire.