This month I will be highlighting one of my hand painted silk neckties. This particular tie was a gift from a very good friend of mine who just so happens to be an artist as well. So please indulge me and allow me to give a shout out to René Shoemaker, painter on silk extraordinaire! Rene is a really talented artist whose main medium is silk and her focus has a definite architectural bend. This necktie goes really well with my gray shirt, but looks just as fine with my white shirt, my sage green shirt, and my black shirt. I first met René several years ago at an Annual Conference of the Special Libraries Association. She was a solo librarian at an architectural library within the University of Georgia who has since retired and is now pursuing her art on a more full-time basis. Now that she is no longer attending conferences, I am able to keep up with and follow her art via her blog, Coffee Cup Press. One of these days I will just have to take a trip back to Georgia to visit. Keep up the good work René! Happy painting!
Archive for the ‘Neckties’ Category
This month I will be highlighting another one of my bowties. This multicolored tie provides a lot of versatility when it comes to selecting which shirt to wear. And, as with most of my colorful neckties, the color of the complementing shirt really makes a difference on the impression this particular tie will make. My favorite colored shirt to wear with this tie (and most conservative look, believe it or not) is my pale purple shirt. But if you really want a bold look, the following colored shirts really accentuate a “bright” look: black, lemon yellow, bright orange, neon green, raspberry, teal blue, and hot pink (a really amazing look).
Since Valentine’s Day is just a couple of weeks away, my red and pink (the traditional colors for Valentine’s Day) necktie is the perfect choice for this month’s post. I do have a solid red bow tie, but I do not have any other “novelty” tie (with hearts or cupid), so this one will have to suffice. And, it is one of my newer acquisitions — this tie was gifted to me at Christmas by one of my co-workers (secret Santa) — and it came with a matching pocket square, and, a set of cuff links! Twas a most thoughtful (and practical) gift. It did however reveal a gap in my current wardrobe. Aside from my plain white shirt, the only other shirt that really compliments this necktie is my really pale pink shirt. The combination works, but it certainly is a bit bland. So, over the Christmas break, I forced myself to go shopping (it did not require a great deal of force) and found a wonderfully bright hot pink shirt which really looks great with this tie, and a plain white shirt with French cuffs (so that I can use the matching cuff links). Ah, life is good indeed.
As we officially welcomed the winter solstice a couple of weeks ago, allow me to highlight one of my snowmen neckties (I have a couple now). Growing up in Michigan, we certainly had our share of winter weather with plenty of snow. From building snowmen, to tunneling in the drifts, to building snow castles, to snowball fights, to playing “king of the hill” with my brothers on the mounds of snow in our yard created by the snow plows, my memories of playing in the snow are many and varied. I have now spent the last 30+ years in Oklahoma where winter is drastically different. Freezing rain (ice) is more the norm (and a lot less fun) and when we do get the occasional snow, it is not nearly as frequent, nor as voluminous in comparison or duration. I miss the crisp, clean air and the serenity that accompany a freshly fallen snow — ’tis even more magical when it happens overnight and you awaken to a winter wonderland.
I probably should have highlighted one of my several holiday neckties as the official “necktie of the month” for December, but alas, I did not. So, here is a bonus necktie post to correct this oversight. This is one of my newer acquisitions, a Jerry Garcia holiday tie entitled “Creme de Menthe Hangover” (what fun!) With a title like this, one certainly can ponder whether the reference to Creme de Menthe is because of the sporadic and possibly drunken/ill-defined highlights of green in the necktie . . . or perhaps it refers to the condition of the artist (and the guilty libation) when the necktie was designed . . . or perhaps I’m just over thinking the title . . . ah, what fun! The tie looks really great with my festive red shirt. And, it doesn’t look too bad with my holiday green shirt either. With such colorful options in my closet, I can’t even imagine wearing this necktie with a plain white shirt, but it is always an option (I guess). I currently have ten (10) holiday neckties, two (2) of which are bow ties: a solid red one, and a green and red plaid one. So despite the short season, I do have plenty of options. If my collection continues to grow, I may reach the point where someday I would be able to wear a different holiday necktie for each work day between Thanksgiving and Christmas . . . heaven help me!
This month I will highlight another one of the bargain ($5) neckties that I acquired in mid-October during my road trip to northwestern Arkansas. And, while I am not always a fan of the color blue, I like the pattern of this one a lot and knew that it would go well with and complement my brown and beige suits quite nicely. I should be able to pair this tie with my beige shirt as well as my brown shirt, my light blue shirt, my dark blue shirt and my white shirt.
Of course one of these days, I may have to acquire and/or add some form of blue suit to my wardrobe. I used to have a navy blue blazer, but once I started wearing suits on a regular basis, I quit wearing blazers and sport coats and gave them all away. Sorting through the closet every now and then is always a good thing — get rid of the clothes that no longer fit and make room for the new acquisitions. Ah, the burden of being a “clothes horse.” Luckily I have several local options for donating my gently used clothing for re-purposing.
With a collection of neckties that now numbers well over one hundred, I am always keeping my eyes peeled for an interesting design and/or color combination. Last month I took a little weekend getaway to Northwestern Arkansas to visit a friend. We met at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas, on Thursday and then spent the rest of the weekend exploring the restaurants, shops, antique stores, and art galleries in the cities of Rogers and Bentonville. A good time was had by all. This month’s necktie was discovered in a second-hand/antique store in downtown Rogers, Arkansas, and was a steal at only $5. Combined with the four additional neckties that I found at this shop, I ended up spending less money for five neckties than one would normally pay retail for one. What a bargain. This particular tie goes really well with my gray shirt, my maroon shirt, my pink shirt, my raspberry shirt, my light blue shirt, my dark blue shirt, and of course, my white shirt.
This month I will be highlighting my camouflage bow tie. And, while I not necessarily a fan of “Duck Dynasty,” this is a most apropos necktie for either the Robertson brothers or anyone in the military. I acquired this particular tie earlier this year (on sale, of course) and have several earth-toned shirts on which to pair this necktie — sage green, beige, brown, white, and black (yes, it actually doesn’t look too bad with a black background). According to the Oxford English Dictionary, camouflage is primarily defined as “disguise, concealment; (now) esp. a means of, or the action of, misleading someone or disguising the truth.” But there are several other additional definitions including: “clothing designed to disguise or conceal its wearer, typically having a mottled pattern in shades of green, brown, or grey, and worn by military personnel or (later) hunters. Now also: clothing designed with this pattern, worn as a fashion item.”
A couple of months ago I found yet another wonderful Jerry Garcia necktie. This one is from the Signature Collection and is entitled “Birdland.” I’m guessing I was drawn to this one because of the heavy use of orange. Regardless of the reason, I liked this one the moment I saw it. Pictured here on my solid brown shirt, this tie looks equally fine on my beige shirt, my orange shirt, my white shirt (not too flashy), and my aqua/turquoise shirt. And depending on the shirt I pair this with (lighter versus darker), this necktie goes really well with either my chocolate brown suit or my lighter beige plaid suit. Such versatility is always a wonderful thing — it sure stretches the wardrobe and allows for multiple different “looks.”
This month I’m going to do something a little different. Rather than highlight an actual necktie from my collection, I’m going to provide an instructional video on how to create an origami bow tie. So, let’s have some fun and let’s get folding!