5 Ties for the Bold: Ascots, Bolos, String Ties, and other Alternative Ties for Men

Do you want to take your style up a notch this season? There’s no better way than with a bold and daring tie. Forget the standard traditional necktie that everyone else is wearing; break free from conformity and express yourself in an unexpected way with one of these five alternative ties: ascots, bolos, string ties, novelty ties, or bowties. 

Whether you need something for everyday wear or special occasions like weddings or graduations, we’ve got the perfect selection of modern alternatives that will turn heads wherever you go! Read on and find out how best to add fun and flair to your wardrobe with our top five picks.


Cravat is a generic word that describes any cloth worn around the neck for ornamental reasons. It is considered the ancestor of bow ties, scarves, and many other types of neckwear.


A Royal Ascot Race took place on the Ascot Racecourse, located in Ascot, the British town Ascot is what gave the dress its name, even though dress cravats weren’t used with morning dresses during the Royal Races by the Edwardian period. Ascot dress is typically worn only with a formal or morning dress.

String Tie

This is the string tie, also known as a bootlace tie or a sheriff’s tie, which is popular in the UK. It’s exactly like the name implies it’s a string looped into a bow instead of being normally tied. It was primarily connected to the Teddy Boy Movement in Britain during the 1950s. It resulted from Neo-Edwardian and rockabilly trends, often misinterpreted as a Bolo tie.

Bolo Tie

A bolo tie, also referred to as the shoelace or bola tie, is a kind of neckwear that is made of the length of cord, typically made of leather instead of an edging of silk or any other material secured with a jewel-like side clasp. It typically has ornamental metal tips, known as “aglets,” which is the source of the “shoelace tie” moniker.

Most sources suggest the bolo tie’s originator was an Arizona silversmith in Wickenburg, Arizona, named Vic Cedarstaff. While riding back in 1940, his cap blew away. He could retrieve it, but he didn’t want to lose the hat’s band, buckle again, reattach them, and place the hat on his neck. Cedarstaff also added silver-coloured aglets to both edges of the band and called it bolos, or bolas, worn by Argentine Gauchos. He also patented the design in the year 1959.

Novelty Ties & Other Tie Styles

We need to include novelty ties from the 20th century in today’s roundup, including things such as Christmas ties, keyboard ties, leather ties, and the famous fish tie invented by Ralph Marlin in the 1980s.

Furthermore, it is essential to consider some 21st century alternatives to tie styles, like bow ties made of wood, metal cork, leather or feathers. Other historical styles need to be covered here, for instance, things such as the rosette tie, among different styles.

Alternative ties for men have come a long way since the days of bland, uniform traditional neckwear. Now, that’s not to say there isn’t a place in every man’s wardrobe for something classic. 

But when you’re looking to add style and personality, it’s time to explore other options. Burgundy bow ties are an excellent choice – they give off a hint of sophistication while adding a pop of colour to your look. 

Fun ties let you express yourself further: bold prints and bright colours will turn heads! Where once there was only one acceptable choice in neckwear, now gentlemen have many options for alternative ties for men.

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