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(franck camhi/Getty Images/iStockphoto)
(franck camhi/Getty Images/iStockphoto)

All tied up: The Windsor knot or the four-in-hand? Add to ...

As you know, the Windsor knot was popularized by crypto-Nazi abdicator Edward VIII, but what are the merits of the Windsor versus the four-in-hand? Can you also explain the British penchant for extremely wide spread shirt collars? I find them appalling.

Okay, first, whether he was a Nazi or not, I rather admire Edward VIII for abdicating. But this has little to do with the value of spread collars. Style mavens often argue that a Windsor is necessary with a spread collar because the narrower four-in-hand leaves a few millimetres of tie visible as it snakes horizontally around the neck. But I am really not alarmed by that sight at all. I have inspected Prince Charles's tie and collar close up, in the flesh, and can report that he sports a widely spread collar and a narrow knot with a tiny end of horizontal tie exposed. That's the kind of rakishness that got the Duke of Windsor such sartorial sway. It's good enough for me.

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Russell Smith's latest novel, Girl Crazy, was recently published. Have a fashion question? E-mail style@globeandmail.com.

 

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