The bolo or bola tie, as it’s variously known, is a fairly recent addition to men’s formal clothing, invented some time in the 1940s by a Wickenburg, Arizona, silversmith named Victor Cedarstaff. Taking its name from a type of Argentinian rope called the boleadora, the bolo tie consists a small braided lariat-like cord that’s secured around the neck by a decorative clasp.

Silver usually decorates the tips of the cord, and the braids are often made of multicolored strands, but it’s the clasp that captures most of the attention of artisans and jewelers. In keeping with its Southwest origins, Native American jewelers make bolos out of sterling silver set with blue turquoise, red coral, and other semi-precious stones. Agates and beads are also used.

Some men’s-clothing purists question whether the bolo tie is a tie at all. In 2005, for example, a 17-year-old high school senior in Montana was denied his diploma because he wore a bolo tie to his graduation ceremony rather than a tradition cravat made of silk or (shudder) polyester. The state’s governor rushed to the lad’s defense, declaring, “In Montana and anyplace in Indian country, a bolo tie is dressed up... a tie is a tie." In fact, in 1971, the state of Arizona had already made the bola tie (as it’s spelled there) its official state neckwear. New Mexico followed suit in 2007.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

The Black Tie Guide

The Black Tie Guide

Peter Marshall became an authority on formalwear out of necessity — he needed a tux to wear on the maiden transat… [read review or visit site]

Ventagli.org

Ventagli.org

Anna Checcoli's homage to the beauty and art of hand fans ('ventagli,' in Italian). Use the left-hand nav to browse… [read review or visit site]

Antiquespectacles.com

Antiquespectacles.com

Dr. David Fleishman's comprehensive spectacles site (over 3500 images), in collaboration with museums around the wo… [read review or visit site]

Fashion Columbia Study Collection

Fashion Columbia Study Collection

The Fashion Columbia Study Collection (FCSC) is the digital home of the Columbia College Chicago’s fashion archiv… [read review or visit site]



Most watched eBay auctions    

For Serious Collectors:turquoise Bolo By Julian Lovato!Old Pawn Vintage Navajo Signed Bold Green Nugget Turquoise Sterling Bolo TieLarge Native American Sterling Silver & Royston Turquoise Inlay Bird Bolo Tie│rsVintage Bennett Silver Zuni Roadrunner Stone Inlay Bolo Tie Clip C31 #196Vintage Zuni Sterling & Multi Stone Inlay Large Headdress Bolo & Tie - E1168Vintage Robert Bernice Leekya Zuni Sterling Silver Kingman Turquoise Bolo Tie JBig Old 1974 Signed Begay Green Royston Turquoise 925 Silver Bolo Tie NecklaceBig Vintage Old Pawn Navajo Large Turquoise Sterling Bolo Tie SignedSterling Silver Turquoise Bolo Tie @ E1170Vintage Bennett Silver Zuni Thunderbird Stone Inlay Bolo Tie #215Vintage Navajo Sterling Silver Turquoise Coral & Multi-stone Inlay Bolo Tie | Rs3 Pair Sterling Silver Bolo Tie Tips 11 Gms Total Wt. Native AmericanLarge Lot Of Men's Belt Buckles & Bolo Ties #2781950s-1960s Navajo Handmade Sterling Silver & High Grade Turquoise Bolo TieEarly Old Pawn Navajo Sterling Silver Turquoise Eagle Bolo Tie | J AxBeautiful Signed Native American Handmade Turquoise Inlay Ironwood Bolo Tie J BxEffie Calavaza Signed Handmade Zuni Sterling Silver Bolo Tie Turquiose & Coral Native Indian Southwestern Vintage Bolo Tie Turquise, Coral, Pearl, Black Onyx.Old Pawn Navajo Sleeping Beauty Turquoise Sterling Silver Bolo Tie -29.5g NrSterling Silver Cowboy Bolo Tie With Turquoise Stone Vintage Old Pawn Turquoise Sterling Bolo TieBt23 Wow Huge 44.3g Pawn "james Lee" Cluster Style Bolo Tie Sterling Excellent Vintage Native American Turquoise Bolo Tie Signed "h.j." Beautiful Silver MatrixAmazing Vintage 925 Sterling Bolo Beaded Turquoise Rope 31.9gBeautiful Royston Turquoise Caboshon And Sterling Silver Men's Bolo Vintage Ray Bennett - Willie Yazzie Sterling Silver Buffalo Bolo Tie.Great Old Inlay Eagle/snake Bolo Tie--nr!Turquoise Stone Set Sterling Silver Bolo Pendant W/two Sterling Silver Tie TipsNative American Bolo Tie Navajo Pawn Turquoise Sterling Silver Ss Tips Signed SVintage Native American Bear Claw Circular Sterling Silver Bolo TieVintage Old Pawn Navajo Sterling Silver Bolo Tie Morenci Turquoise Pyrite SignedVintage Sterling And Turquoise Bolo Tie Very Nice Vintage Turquoise Coral Sterling Silver Bolo Tie Signed Ls Indian Jewelry Sterling Silver Buffalo Deer Antler Old Bolo Tie Vintage Black Leather Cord TipsOld Native American Zuni Sterling 925 Multi-stone Sun Face Bolo Tie 925 Tips UsaSterling Silver Abalone Shell Bolo TieVintage Navajo Green Sterling Silver Signed Bolo TieBolo Tie Black Leather Strap, Sterling Silver Warrior EagleSouthwest Silver And Turquoise Bolo TieVintage Girl Scout Cap Hat Beret, Belt, Bolo Tie/slide, Badge Lot!Gorgeous Vintage Turquoise Inlaid Silver Arrowhead Bolo Tie Black Leather Sterling Silver Bolo Tips 10gms. 2 3/4" Native American Made New Zuni Native American Silver Thunderbird Bolo Tie Coral Turquoise Pearl StonesVintage Zuni Paul Peyketewa Tortoise Shell Mop Turquoise Bald Eagle Ss Bolo Sterling Silver 925 Blue Turquoise Bolo Tie Signed 'j' Extra Large Stone1950s-1960s Large Navajo Sterling Silver & Gem Quality Turquoise Bolo TieBolo TieHand Made Glass Beaded Native American Bolo TieNative American Bolo Tie Black Leather Straps, Sterling Silver, Turquoise, CoralBt21 Estate Sw Bolo Tie Made By "ram " W/ Kachina Dancer "owyhee Jasper" Cab ExcMen's Bolo Tie - Mobil Pegasus Symbol - Very Nice Condition!Waltham 19 Jewel Gold Filled Pocket Watch With Fob - Very Nice Looking*****Vtg Signed Bolo Tie Sterling Turquoise Native American By Jimmy Nezzie NavajoLot Of Three Bolo TiesVintage Taxco Mexico Silver & Black Obsidian Mask Warrior Bolo Tie Brown LeatherBolo Ties--lotBolo "roadrunner" Tie - Turquoise & Red Stones - Silver & BlackMichael Simon, Cute Bolo Tie Beaded Embellished Sweater, Sz S, NwotVintage Bolo Tie Clip Bennett Turquoise Sterling Silver Bolo TieVintage Bolo Ties