Published By: Michael Joseph
Released On: 16/11/2021
Every single one of Stephen Fry’s ties – whether floral, fluorescent, football themed; striped or spotty, outrageous or simply debonair – tells an intimate tale about a moment in Stephen’s life.
Inspired by Stephen’s hugely popular Instagram posts, this book will feature beautiful, hand-drawn illustrations and photographs to celebrate his expansive collection of man’s greatest clothing companion: The Tie, in all its sophisticated glory.
Everyone I told that I was reading this book looked at me like I had gone quite mad. And I can see their thinking. Why would I – a woman who has never worn a tie in her life outside of fancy-dress occasions, and has no real interest in them – spend money on a book documenting a large quantity of them? Well, mainly because it’s written by Stephen Fry who is one of my idols. But also, it just seemed to have a little charm about it.
There’s a really interesting introduction to menswear – not just neckwear – as well as what ties and other neckwear means to Stephen himself. He’s made something as simple and practical as a tie have so much passion and heart, and you can tell they mean something a little more than simply clothing to him.
I wasn’t aware of Stephen’s lockdown Instagram posts documenting his ties, so this was a fresh concept to me, but I don’t think you miss out on anything having not seen them. However, I can’t say if this would simply be a repeat for those who did see the Instagram posts, but I think it would be worth reading anyway.
Each page has a photograph of the tie in question, interspersed with hand-drawn illustrations of different ways to tie a tie. Okay, I know this sounds a bit dry, but they’re beautifully done, and the photos and drawings really depict the beautiful nuances of each piece of neckwear.
This isn’t just a book about ties in and of themselves. Stephen has attached witty stories or anecdotes to each tie, as well as a history of where the tie came from and its creator. It’s part factual and party fantastical. I adore Stephen’s use of words, and only Stephen can take a seemingly dull topic like neckwear and make it interesting and fascinating. There’s a real heart to this little pocket-sized book.