Tie Tack Etiquette

Written by shauna heathman Google
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Tie Tack Etiquette
A tie tack is used to keep the tie in place. (tie and shirt image by jeancliclac from Fotolia.com)

A tie tack has been around since the 19th century to keep a tie in place and discourage any tie etiquette blunders that may arise when the tie is not secured to the shirt. With the variety of options and price points, a tie tack exists suited to every personal taste.

Tie History

The tie originated from the European cravat which was a long strip of cloth worn around a man's neck. The four-in-hand tie documents back to the 1860s. At this time, the tie was originally worn with upturned, detachable collars. Wearing the tie with downturned collars did not appear until the 1920s.

Tie Tack History

By the 1870s, shortly after the four-in-hand tie became popular, men started using tie pins or tie tacks to fasten the tie directly to the shirt. At that time, ties were prone to wrinkles and often did not fall straight, so a tie tack was needed to help the tie lay properly.


The tie tack, otherwise known as a tie pin, is used to keep the tie in place. Other accessories that men wear for the same purposes include tie bars, tie chains, tie clips and tie straps. Each function slightly differently but serve to keep the tie from blowing in the wind or draping in food.


The tie tack looks like a stud earring with a chain attached to the back, leading to a piece of metal. The piece of metal is slid through one of the buttonholes on the man's dress shirt. On the other side of the chain where the pin and tack is found, the pin is detached from the base and poked through both pieces of the tie fabric and then reattached to the base.


The tie tack can be found in many styles, metals and materials to suit the personal style and preference of the wearer. Tie tacks can be found in gold, silver, platinum and other metals and can be engraved or set with gemstones and diamonds.


Tie tacks pierce the tie fabric when worn, which can leave permanent hole marks on the silk of the tie. If the wearer plans on wearing the tie without a tie tack on other occasions, he may want to opt for a tie bar, tie chain or tie clip which will not puncture the fabric.

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