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Sovereign Beck Gets Sketchy

BY lauren caruso 10/25/2012

How do you come up with a tie print? Like this.

“My mom used to make ties for my dad back in the sixties and seventies, so I’d always wear one of his oversize, printed styles,” explains Will Beck of his all-boys-school wardrobe essential. Decades later, he and his partner in crime Ryan Sovereign (who was into comic-book-style drawing during his junior-high days) have built a neckwear line around their affection for the classic three-inch tie and mathematica-inspired print design. Here, see how the latter comes to life. 



Ryan: “Sometimes designs start with a little Post-it doodle. Sometimes it’s pretty laborious, and we spend a ton of time redrawing and finessing the sketch. I can’t really remember where this one came from, but I probably saw something somewhere that inspired it and wanted to sketch it before I forgot. Or could have just been: Draw a line, draw another, and keep adding.”



Ryan: “Often, when a pattern idea sparks, we’ll hand-draw it…and then we’ll think maybe it’d be done better in Illustrator. Sometimes it’ll start off one way, and once it’s scanned into the computer, it’ll end completely differently.”



Ryan: “I don’t know that we have a color palette that we really gravitate to. There are colors we don’t like—like orange, green, and tan—so that usually narrows it down. Pink seems to come up a lot. It matches everything.”



Will: “Our ties are hand-cut and -sewn, and we only work with all-natural fabrics like silk, wool, cotton, and linen. It’s best to see the fabrics in person and feel them—if they’re too thick, then the tie won’t tie right. In terms of width, 2 ¾ to 3 inches looks right to us. A lot of our bigger, bolder patterns would look disproportionate and, well, downright silly on a skinny tie.”



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