The Cambridge University Heraldic & Genealogical Society

C.U.H.&G.S. Tie Page

This is not the place to look for information about C.U.H.&G.S.’ own ties!

A number of books have been published on the history of the tie (and cravat and stock). However, relatively few have written about the colours and design of club ties and on the way they are knotted. This document reviews books on these last two topics. There is also a short note on summer ties.

Laver — Lewis — Fink and Mao — Sells — Summer Ties


Laver, J. (introduction by), The Book of School, University, Navy, Army, Air Force and Club Ties, Seeley Service and Co. Ltd, 1968 [—]

Twenty-seven plates in full colour of ties. Also, a key for identification of the same.


Lewis, V., Cricket Ties – An International Guide for Cricket Lovers, Ebury Press, 1984 [0 85223 415 5]

Pictures of ties of cricket clubs – from test match sides to wandering clubs – with commentaries.

Fink and Mao

Fink, T. and Mao, Y., The 85 Ways to Tie a Tie – The Science and Aesthetics of Tie Knots, Fourth Estate, 1999 [1 84115 249 8]

Dr Fink and Dr Mao enumerate all ways of tying a knot within the constraints that the tie must pass round the neck, must terminate in two loose ends and is of finite width and limited length. This results in 85 knots. Of these, thirteen are deemed to be aesthetic knots in terms of symmetry and the distribution of moves which make up the knot. Four of the thirteen are the existing knots used for ties and the remaining nine are new.

Diagrams indicate the way in which all 85 knots are tied. In addition, there are photographs of the thirteen aesthetic knots.

This book has caused a certain amount of interest in the press – press release, The Daily Telegraph (with links to further tie sites) and The Times.


Those interested in tie knots can find further information on the web. The most extensive site I have found so far shows eight knots.


Sells, C., Ties of Distinction, Schiffer Books, 1998 [0-7643-0633-2 ]

Shows colour plates of 472 regimental, college, university, and club ties. Introduction by Christopher Sells of P.L. Sells & Co., “Britain’s last remaining manufacturer of a complete line of today’s regimental stripe ties.”

Summer Ties

The concept of summer ties appears to be unique to Cambridge. They are striped ties in college colours but the distinguishing feature is that the background is always white.