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What Is Sartorial Neckwear?

 

It's one thing to buy a two-dollar tie from a thrift store. It is quite a different thing to be in possession of a fine article of sartorial neckwear-and when it comes to fancy words for ordinary elements of business style, we at 2tieatie.com perk up and want a piece!

Sartorial is a word that comes from Late Latin sartor, meaning tailor. Coined at some time in the early 1800s, "sartorial" became the catch phrase for tailors with talent. Every suit of course had to be tailored-factories were producing textiles, not full wardrobes-and there needed to be a way for some tailors to prove that they were a cut (and a couple of stitches) above the rest. Sartorial workmanship became the key to selling your stuff.


Interestingly, the term sartorial also indicates anything having to do with the sartorius, a muscle in your leg. It is long, flat, and narrow, running from the front of the hip to the inner side of the tibia. The sartorius helps bend the hip and knee joint and in rotating the thigh. It is the longest muscle in humans. Does that have any connection to the sartorial nature of ties and suits? At the very least, the shape sounds something like a tie. So long as you keep your newfound vocabulary away from your brother-in-law the MD, you should be fine with touting sartorial as the new word of the day.

As with any hallmark of greatness, the term sartorial has been snatched by less-than-quality tie manufacturers from time to time. Ultimately, the only way to tell a tie's sartorial splendor is to test it out yourself. Many less-expensive ties, claiming to be made according to Italian patterns or from exotic Asian silk, are in fact cheap (though decently sturdy) imitations. You will find that some ties leave runs when they tie and that others never quite hang right. With that said, though, terming a tie to have sartorial excellence is quite the statement. If ties are discussed or advertised in this manner, it's probably worth looking into. Owning a truly sartorial piece of neckwear makes you a veritable fashion figurehead.

We were very well-acquainted with a local business leader whose term of service was about to come up. He was returning to an earlier venture, forgoing the trappings of suit and tie for the more comfortable office wear at his previous managerial position. (Truth be told, the clothing might have had something to do with it-mostly, though, he just felt that his time had come.) He had led an amazing team through all sorts of recessions and eventual growth, setting records in the area for the volume of success and the level of satisfaction and performance within his team. At the final meeting of some of his top advisors, he took a moment to let us all unwind: he broke out his tie collection.

Never had we seen such sartorial masterworks! From glittering silver-on-black to deftly woven red-and-blue sevenfold ties, he had every color that a man could want. As we perused the pile of ties and were permitted to select an item of neckwear each, many of us could feel the difference. Being younger in the field than he was, some of us wore the only nice tie that we owned to that meeting. Appropriately humbled, we carried on his legacy both in our work and in his sartorial taste. Truly, knowing the word-and knowing that your tie deserves it-makes such a level of quality in neckwear worth every bit it claims.

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