Bow ties are a traditional type of necktie often worn primarily at formal occasions, including weddings, funerals, religious services, graduations, special parties, prom, and other dances. Technically speaking, the bow tie is described as “a ribbon of fabric tied around the collar of a shirt in a symmetrical manner so that the two opposite ends form loops.”
The bow tie is said to have originated during the Thirty Year War that took place in Europe during the seventeenth century. Scarves were worn by mercenaries, or hired soldiers, to hold together the neck opening of their shirts. The scarves became popular in France, and later evolved into bow the standard necktie and the bow tie.
Culturally, the bow tie inhabits a number of roles. Events may be described as “white tie” or “black tie affairs,” meaning that attendees must “dress up” formally. This typically includes a bow tie for men. During the 1980s, many business women wore a fuller, feminine form of the bow tie with their business suits. Alternatively, clowns are at times depicted as wearing oversized, comical bow ties.
Bow ties, long regarded as relics, are making a comeback in modern society. For example, young Moziah Bridges of Memphis, Tennessee, USA has reintroduced the bow tie as an accessory for adolescents. Says Mo, “I started my company because I needed an accessory to help me look sharp, but didn’t see anything out there that fit my style or personality. So, with the help of my granny, I started making my own bow ties.” Mo is now the CEO of the company Mo’s Bows; he will graduate high school in the year 2020.
Would you like to draw a bow tie? Now you can, using this simple, step-by-step drawing tutorial. You will need only a sheet of paper, a pencil, and a good eraser. You may also wish to employ markers, crayons, colored pencils, paints, or other implements to shade your finished drawing.
In each step of this drawing guide, you will find detailed illustrations as well as explanatory text. Pay special attention to the highlighted blue lines, as these indicate new lines to be added to your drawing. In some steps, lines drawn previously will be removed.
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Step-by-Step Instructions for Drawing a Bow Tie
1. Draw an oval. This will form the knot in the center of the bow tie.
2. Draw a long, curved line extending from one side of the knot. This forms one side of the bow tie itself.
3. Draw the other side of the bow tie using a long, curved line. This line should be a mirror image of the one on the opposite side.
4. Enclose both sides of the bow tie, using a curved line for each.
5. Shape the knot of the bow tie. Draw a curved line across the top and bottom of the knot.
6. Erase the guide lines from the bow tie’s knot.
7. Extend two sets of long, gently curving lines downward from the knot of the bow. These will form the bow’s ribbons.
8. Enclose the bottom of each ribbon using two straight or slightly curved lines. An open triangle shape should be formed at the end of each ribbon.
9. Add depth to the bow. Extend curved lines from the knot into each side of the bow and into the ribbons.
10. Color your bow tie. Bow ties can come in any color you can imagine, so be creative! You can add patterns to your bow tie, too. For example, you might use our star drawing tutorial to craft your own star spangled tie.
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