Monday, October 18, 2010

Gene Meyer's Ties: Dot Calm World


It is time to do something about our neglect of the necktie.

Some people may lament the current state of our political, financial, and educational worlds, but I find the lack of respect for ties equally alarming.

Many blame the tie's demise on the rise of the dot-com world and the casual look. Whatever the cause, I prefer the dot calm world of Gene Meyer's neckties above all others.

I draw your particular attention to the green tie with the large blue dot, second from the left. Despite the fact that green can be a very difficult color to blend, I wear this tie as often as any other: to parties with a navy blazer, or in summer with a tan poplin suit. It has never failed to get positive comments from people, no matter how many times I've worn it. People always seem to think it's "of the moment," even though it's at least ten years old.

Gene Meyer made this tie and the other ones in the photo as well. My wife, the DG (Darling Girl), and I discovered his work while we were in Milan in 1995. This was back in the days before I had become a blogging tycoon; I was an informal client-advisor to the best hotel company in the world. That company had just hit the jackpot by buying another hotel company and landing two gems, one on Fifty-Seventh Street in NYC and the other in Milan.

Lucky us: I had to make sure the hotel was fit for ultra-sensitive editors, photographers and their models. I assure you that it was.

I cannot provide a photo of that first tie, because it is hiding somewhere* (certain daughters like to borrow brightly colored ties to wear as belts; I 'll need to check on that); however, here is the tin from the shop, Nationali Cravaterie. I recall immediately liking Meyer's signature polka-dot linings.

The two ties shown in the top photo, on the left, were constructed with a vertical weave in the silk which gives them a smoother feel than diagonally woven ties. It also encourages stretching, but not so much as would happen with a knitted tie. Still, it's best to keep this type of design wound inside a round tin or wooden box.

Meyer used a different, fuller weave for the ties to the right here, which gives them a kind of spring to the touch. Also, they are more formal. I wear the silver/blue/green one at parties and celebrations, especially at holiday time, when the circles are sometimes taken for ornaments. The blue one is more appropriate for business.

Some of you may have seen Meyer's work and not known, at the restaurant Le Cirque in New York or its more modestly-priced cousin, Circo, across town. The waiters at both places wore Meyer ties in various circle designs. Perhaps they still do so, despite the fact that Meyer, apparently, has stopped designing ties altogether.

Reportedly Mr. Meyer is designing and selling carpets and rugs now in Florida. We wish him great success in this endeavor. In fact, we wish that he is so successful at it and makes so many great carpets and rugs that he wakes up one morning with a sudden urge to make ties again, a lot of ties, with dot linings.

The RareBurgher world will be waiting for them.

*Ed Note: Readers might have taken note that losing items of clothing is a recurring theme here. My DG has become used to hearing laments about who has taken this or where that could have gone when I placed it right there only three years ago. Experience says that the tie in question will turn up in a suitcase, inside a jacket pocket, or hanging in a  garment bag in the attic. We will keep you updated.

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