Bow Ties Sydney, Australia - Le Noeud Papillon - Specialists In Self Tying Bow Ties

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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Introducing The Lucky Dip Bow Tie!

When I was a child they used to have lucky dips in most toy shops and newsagents. It was a lot of fun, especially when the lucky dip prizes were wrapped so well. It meant that even if what was inside was terrible, you didn't care, because it was the fun of not knowing and of having a surprise. Well, we don't make terrible products here at Le Noeud Papillon, but we do want you to enjoy the feeling of a surprise. So, we have added a lucky dip bow to the shopping cart at almost half the price of a normal bow. Of course, our lucky dips are not the $2 types, but we promise you that it will be a bow that will have been on the website or the blog. And please, if you feel up to it, tell us a little about yourself when you purchase the bow so we can cater the bow to your taste. 

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

For Those That Care About The Minute Detail - Pulling Apart A Ralph Lauren Purple Label By Rafael Caruso

Jeffery from Tutto Fato Mano - now called Made By Hand - The Great Sartorial Debate - has been fortunate enough to receive a Purple Label Ralph Lauren jacket made by the workroom of Rafael Caruso, to be used for dissection and analysis of production methods. A very interesting article. Take a look at his unravelling:

This One Sent In From A New Friend Who Believes That Bow Ties Are Indeed Cool

Australian Cricket Star Brett Lee In LNP B Diamond

Australian Cricket Star Brett Lee wears Le Noeud Papillon of Sydney's B.Diamond

And Who Wore Bows Yesterday At The Oscars?

This link was sent to us via our web partner in the United States - TIE DEALS . Tie Deals is a California based website which offers a range of bow ties from leading brands around the globe.

It seems black satin silk bow ties are the 'soup du jour'.

Whilst I don't wish to insult anyone, I think the only one who got it right is Colin Firth, who understands proportions,  followed by Jean Dujardin - which is a strange name 'John Of The Garden' - who got it mostly right except for the fact that on a wing tip collar you should not wear an adjustable bow tie because the break in the silk is noticeable. Add to this the fact that his bow looks slightly awkward because the centre knot is too tight because of the weight of the silk used in making the bow and this creates a triangular flair on the bow at either end.

Here is the link to Hollwood Wire that they wanted us to know about:

Monday, February 27, 2012

The Thing About Fashion...

This post popped up on my Facebook feed. It was nice to see Angelo Flaccavento back in a bow tie, however, notice that he is wearing a three button jacket with a high notched lapel. I found this rather amusing because just last night an acquaintance asked me for some advice. He said 'Tell me, is this suit okay to keep? It is fairly old but I paid a lot of money for it and I don't want to throw it out'. To which I replied 'This black three button high notched lapel is so out of date that you may as well store it until it comes back into fashion in a retrospective sense'. And then bloody Angelo pulls one out and wears it in this photo, which then begs the question 'Well, is it coming back in again?'.

The trouble with fashion is it is so often a process of picking old things up and making them new again. Whilst I hated and always hated the three button high notched lapel suit, I can understand why it might be looked at again because every other avenue of suiting has been explored in the last three years and it is possibly the final frontier... But I beg of you, people out there, please, let us not return to the three button high notch. I couldn't bear it to tow the party line.

Looks I Saw On Guerreisms That I Like

Embracing Change - The Vedic Way

For all those of you who meditate, Limor Babai from Double Bay Meditation Centre has written a small article for meditators and non meditators on how to cope with change.

Read it here:

A Meditator Asks:

I have heard you say that I should embrace change.   How can I overcome my fear of change and embrace change in my life?

Evolution means progressive change.  There is no progress in life without change.

Fear of change develops from a lack of awareness of that deep, inner quiet, non-changing aspect of consciousness that we refer to as "Being" or "Pure Consciousness" - the underlying or transcendental aspect of our consciousness.

Being is the foundation of consciousness.  Without a foundation, instability is guaranteed and from that fear develops.

When a change occurs and we have insufficient adaptation energy to adapt to that change then we 
mal-adapt and our body begins to try to fight or flee from the change.  The fight or-flight/stress reaction is a well-known reflex where the nervous system mobilizes a set of physiological responses to a demand/change in environment when it is unable to adapt to the demand marked by an increase in the stress chemicals plasma cortisol and arterial blood lactate, increases in blood pressure, heart rate, blood flow to the muscles and oxygen consumption. This leads to the accumulation of stress in the body.

How can we avoid having this stress reaction in response to a demand or change of expectations?

The most effective course of action is to stabilize our own state of consciousness; to make our own capability, adaptability, creativity, and happiness non-variable.  A non-variable, high state of consciousness is the only basis on which we can embrace progressive change in our life and we can consistently meet the demands in our lives without unconsciously resisting the process of evolution and thereby accumulating stress.

We need to simply sit twice a day for 20 minutes and practise the technique that we have been instructed in.

Our technique of meditation is designed to deliver that deep inner quietness to the mind in meditation, and over time with consistent regular practise allows us to experience this with our eyes open - first for a little while and then as time goes on more and more until it becomes a permanent, 24 hour experience - "Being" becomes well established in our awareness.

As our state of consciousness grows and we begin to stabilize that state of Being in our awareness we begin more and more to have adaptive responses to change and our desires become more easily fulfilled.  This is the way to live a blissful life.

We can make a decision to stop resisting change and start embracing it by bringing more of that deep, inner quiet, non changing, transcendental aspect of consciousness into our awareness.

If you have lapsed with your practice, you can simply sit and practise your technique again - it will come back to you naturally.  Join Group Meditation Meetings - these provide the opportunity to strengthen your practice of meditation through a review of technique, and to broaden and deepen your personal experiences and results through more advanced understanding.  Lapsed meditators find this an ideal way to get refreshed.  Come and ask questions about your experiences.

With love,

Mugshots From The NSW Police In The 1920's

These photos were found by Carlos Oppenheimer on The Daily Mail website in the UK. Read the article here:

I would venture to say that these days petty female criminals in Australia are somewhat more attractive than this bunch (save Fay Watson at the bottom who was done for cocaine possession on Crown Street....  Little minx..... Nothing has changed, still plenty of Fay Watsons on Crown Street on any given Friday night).

Alma Smith, 34, performed an illegal abortion
Clara Randall told police that her jewellery had been stolen from her  Bondi flat and put in an insurance claim, but she stole it herself. She's wearing 'Vintage' available from the Bondi flea markets on Sundays...
This Belle Of The Ball, Dorothy Mort, 32, yes, you heard me, 32, killed her Dr lover after he tried to end the romance. I wonder what part of it was 'romance'.
This vixen, Fay Watson, was done for a bag of rack on Crown Street in Surry Hills. Nothing has changed.... You can still find Fay Watsons on the same shiiit every Friday night...

Sunday, February 26, 2012

A New Store In Melbourne For Le Noeud Papillon of Sydney

We are now stocking in Cyberia in Melbourne. Located at 579 Chapel Street, South Yarra, we are very pleased to be included within Cyberia's product mix. It is worth taking a look at Cyberia's 'uber trendy' website . They have a very interesting mix of labels in store and online.

For those of our customers that are in Melbourne, we recommend you call Cyberia before purchasing a bow as they are not stocking the full range just as yet but can take delivery of any bow you require within 24 hours. Tel. + 61 3 9824 1339

One More Josephine Baker Reference If I May

Friday, February 24, 2012

A Tribute To This Fine Weather We've Been Having Here In Sydney!

And, don't we deserve it after all that rain! Here is the 1927 rendition of 'Blue Skies' by Josephine Baker.

The Artfulness Of An Artisan - The Process Of Patine

For those of you that read this blog regularly, you will know that recently Ivan Crivellaro began working on a pair of shoes for me. The intention of making the shoes was as much to see the work as it progressed, from a blogging perspective, so that you, the readers, might see how a real artisan goes to work.

What Ivan does best is a process called 'patine' which is a dyeing technique which gives a marbling effect on the shoes which has been made famous by production houses such as Berluti and also by companies such as Matthew Cookson in Paris. There are many companies offering patine (some people spell it 'patina') finishes, but these are two that I am familiar with that have websites I know of.

The process can be done one of two ways - either you start with a white or tan coloured leather as a base and then apply the dye, or, alternatively, you can do a reverse patine, which involves stripping back the leather of an old shoe and reapplying the dye. 

The example below is what we would come to expect from a 'new shoe' being treated. Ivan has taken a white leather, and once he has finished putting the shoe together, he is now ready to apply his artisan dyeing technique.

Notice the effect of the brush and spotting techniques on the shoes as the dye is applied. The workmanship means that you essentially treat the shoe like a canvas and you create whatever look you like - except that it is a shoe, and therefore requires consideration as to its function for the final wearer. With patine you can use multiple dye colours and mixes to create a layered technique which can showcase many different colours that have been slowly melded together through layers of brushing on and then stripping back. The result is a finish which can be so unique and complex that it is more a work of art than a traditional shoe, with subtle nuances at play in every part of the shoe from the heel to the toe notwithstanding how to the dye will take to the brogue and details in the leather. The most common patine finishes either give a rich wooden finish or else a marbled finish, though some will be a combination of both.

When the shoe is finished with the dyeing technique you can then begin your glaçage process to finish the shoes with that lovely coated film which brings out all the hard work and workmanship involved in the patine.

I have found another interesting blog entry on patine if you would like to see the process being done from start to finish by a shoe maker in England. Click here

The start - a shoe with a white base leather from which artisan Ivan Crivellaro will embark on his unique patine  dyeing technique

Notice the different brush work, a spotted or sponged technique at the rear of the shoe, with a brushwork finish on the front to given an olden wooden feel to the leather.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

It Is So Gratifying When Your Customers Like What You Do

This email arrived from a regular customer. I find it so enjoyable when his emails come through and I stop what I am doing to read all that he has to say, not just about the bow ties, but about how he puts his outfits together. I hope you like it too.

As it happens the bows I'd ordered this time didn't really suit the sombre weather we'd be having here lately. I've managed to collect quite a lot of your wares over the past year, so rolling out a new bow more slowly is much easier, and, I think, showcases the new bow in a better light. It just doesn't feel right to wear a sky blue jacket on a day the rain's coming down sideways, after all. 

Needless to say the outfit was a pretty big success, though -- one of my favourites in some time. I wore Parisian Nights with the aforementioned jacket and some wonderful navy pants I'd recently acquired, and though I could use some better shoes to tie it all together, I was happy with the result. I'll admit I mishandled the Orlando debut somewhat, though: I paired it with a grey pinstriped jacket that didn't really make the best match. As much as I love the Orlando, I do think it's a bit hard to incorporate into one's wardrobe. The navy dots are an excellent detail, but they get lost if there's no other colour in the outfit. In a perfect world I'd love to wear it with a navy smoking jacket (or just a velvet jacket, maybe), but I'll have to leave that for another day. 

I'm sure I'm boring you with those details by now, but at the risk of being verbose I did want to add one more thing: 

I recently purchased a couple other bows from a small American bow tie company I'd heard about. It's called NO NAME MENTIONED, and their wares looked pretty interesting to me. I couldn't help but notice the prices were what I'd call downright cheap -- certainly a noteworthy detail.

It turns out you get what you pay for, though -- I ordered a velvet bow and one of the last of a cotton fabric they had. While I'm certainly not disappointed, the quality of the velvet is, in all honesty, rather low. It looks okay, but the feel of it is rough and unpleasant. (I ordered it in lieu of a Dicky -- when I'd made up my mind to get one of those, naturally you'd sold out of it by then. Ah well.) The other cotton bow is definitely of better quality but compared to your own wares it's somewhat... lacking. 

So essentially what I'm trying to say is that your own bows are still far and away my favourite. I know you've heard me say that many times by now but I still find it remarkable just how much I like them. So I'll go ahead and risk sounding obsequious one more time (and what a loathsome trait that is!) and say that I remain, as ever, a fan of your work.


B.P "

A Customer's New Canclini Shirts

A Customer's New Carlo Riva Shirts

If you live in the Sydney metropolitan area and are interested in our shirt service, please email 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Monday, February 20, 2012

Taking A Risk.....Cream Flannel

Will Boehlke of A Suitable Wardrobe decided to commission Fox Brothers to make a cream flannel in a heavier wool (13 ounce 370/400 grams). It is for cooler climates, and I am banking on it getting cold this winter with all the rain we've had, otherwise I just subscribed to something I may never wear. Nevertheless, I am all for taking risks, and this could be something very special, very rare, and perhaps that alone is enough to push me over the line. What I am going to do with it will be a surprise, suffice to say that I will share the surprise with my blog readers.

According to Will, this flannel wool, made in Somerset England, is the last place in the world to make a cream flannel. So, if you want some for yourself, last I heard there were a few metres left.... Buy Now

Arnold - A New Grosgrain Black Silk Bow Tie From Le Noeud Papillon of Sydney

Just arrived today, available through

Penny - In The Vein Of Churchill

One of the things I learnt recently was that Winston Churchill wore navy with white polka dot bow ties, not, as I have previously thought, black with white polka dots. The reason I had it figured incorrectly was that my only reference was black and white photos I could find of Churchill. It was an article in the Wall Street Journal by William Lyons, with Charles O'Reilly from Turbull & Asser, where Churchill once bought his bow ties from, which set me straight:

"I suppose we really ought to put it on display," says Charles O'Reilly, the buyer for Turnbull & Asser who is responsible for purchasing the retailer's stock of brightly colored silks. Not that the tailor is short of neckwear; leafing through a tie rack replete with dozens of styles, Mr. O'Reilly picks out a royal-blue polka-dot number familiar to many as the preferred choice of Sir Winston Churchill. Due to a number of handwritten requests from customers over the past two years, the London-based tailor decided to reintroduce its Churchill Spot bow-tie range this year. "It's proved hugely popular," he says, adding that sales of bow ties at the company have increased as much as 25% in the past two years. 

Sunday, February 19, 2012

An Interview With James Andrew Of 'What Is James Wearing?'

James Andrew is the face and creator of What Is James Wearing, a blog which documents James' style as he works his way through New York, his interior design work, his love of museums and galleries, his friends and his travel itinerary. It is one of the most interesting and unique male fashion blogs in the world today and I was privileged to have James answer a few questions about his blog and his sense of style.

James, how did it all start with What Is James Wearing?

It was all rather reluctantly - the cat calls I’d receive at the gym for my usual (slightly over the top?) outfits – I’d come in with my citron yellow jeans or a dusty rose suede safari jacket and there’d always be a “Hey Jimmy – whatcha got on today?” Of course I’d be tickled by the response I was getting, but I didn’t really see the opportunity I had until I started fitness training with the amazing Ngo Okafor. It was in fact Okafor who, with huge foresight, suggested I make a blog based on my fashion sense. It did take some friendly insistence from him over the next month or so, but I eventually called on Alex Scott to help create what we now know as What is James Wearing?!

Are you a born and bred New Yorker?

I consider myself a "New Yorker" although I am from Providence , Rhode Island, anyone,like myself, who has lived in New York City for more than 20 years can be considered a true "New Yorker"

When it comes to your own personal style, you seem to be very loyal to your brands. In your repertoire are Tom Ford, Charvet, Turnbull & Asser, Creed (as a fragrance), Gucci – what other brands do you love which we don’t see appear on your site?  And, do you indulge in ‘made to measure’ and ‘bespoke? If you do, are you willing share with us who your favourite tailor is?

I have been very inclusive of all the diverse brands and designers that I am fond of , from Tom Ford to Levi's. 

I am planning an expedition to London's  Savile Row and look forward to having several pieces made, Huntsman has a terrific pink tweed that I am wild about, Poole - a smoking jacket in midnight velvet , shoes from Cleverly "The de Rede" tasseled loafer is a must have, hats from Lock and umbrellas from Swaine Adney Brigg

Tell us about your shoe collection? What sort of shoes will we find in your wardrobe? What sort of finish do you look for in leather?

My favorite shoes are by Tom Ford , I love the narrow waist and the height of the heel makes me feel several inches taller.

The greatest pocket square I own is?

I have masses and masses of pocket squares, it would be a challenge to pick a favorite, the vintage patterns from Charvet, Tom Ford and a lovely pale pink cotton voile from Ralph Lauren

If I could offer one tip of advice for a young man trying to develop his own personal style it would be....

Be true to oneself, don't look outside of oneself for acceptance and approval, don't be afraid to make a mistake and continue to evolve.

What is the greatest faux pas you can make when working with a colourful palette in your wardrobe?

There has to be the right amount of balance and juxtaposition or one can end up looking like a parrot on crack

If you were forced to make one last blog post and to wear your favourite clothes, could you describe to us what you might like to wear?

I would think that my last blog post would have to be most celebratory so a fantastic suit or black tie ensemble.

Friday, February 17, 2012

I Love A Pop-Over For The Australian Summer

A pop-over for the Australian summer is ideal for a few reasons. For one, if you are in and out of the water, on or off the beach, in or around the pool, you cannot really wear a button up shirt. It can be cumbersome if it gets slightly moist and it probably needs to be laundered after every use. As a compromise, a crinkled pop over looks better than a t-shirt, it can be dressed up or down and gives you a shirt without having the formality of being in a full button up shirt. This example is after unfolding it out of my bag. Still looks good, still holds a lot of shape. This particular shirt is made from Carlo Riva light blue cotton twill with white contrast and blue detail on both collar and cuff. I urge Australians to re-consider the pop-over during the summer. It sure looks a helluva lot more sophisticated than wearing a v-neck t-shirt.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

All About Wool - Talking About Wool With Dom Knight On ABC 702 Evenings

If you wish to hear that interview, click on the link below.

Never Rush Your Tailor

Being a Young Turk in this whole tailoring game, I was quick to want to catch up with some of the more flamboyant European designs I had seen by the likes of Viktor & Rolfe and of course on that extraordinary Parisian, Hugo Jacomet. Hugo was wearing a double-breasted peaked lapel in one of the posts on the Dandy Portraits with a one button working sleeve. As I posted earlier, the Italians wouldn't let me wear double-breasted, so the compromise was a two button suit with a widely curved Viktor & Rolfe styled high peaked lapel. The faux pas, totally mine, was to rush them in their work and to set them a deadline, which is why I am suffering at the moment, because, sadly, the jacket does not sit as well as it should and is not nearly as lovely as the shawl lapel blazer they made me last year. I hate to say it, but it must be said, you should never rush your tailor. No matter how important you think it is, let him do his work or else you will be disappointed, just like me. And the second thing to note, when working with light fabrics, be very careful. Every little nuance will play out two fold on a lighter wool. I am starting to want to move back to the Super 100's I started on. I think they are far more hard wearing and have more contour, drape and body.

Regards, N_.