Since the beginning of the tie’s modern history (somewhere around World War I), its width has fluctuated heavily, with extremes as narrow as 2.5 and as wide as 14 cm.
The configuration we carry today at Shibumi with a width of 8 or 9 cm and a standard length of 150 cm is not, as one could think, just on some point of the curve between wide and narrow. Well, of course it is, but there’s a reason why we’re exactly here. In our opinion, the overall impression one should get from a man’s dress is one of harmony. Harmonious colors, textures, proportions. Proportion being the key word here: an outfit, a shirt, a suit, has to be well-proportioned for its wearer to look good. Directly related to the width of the tie is the width of the lapel; the lapel should cover about half the length between shirt and shoulder to look harmonious. The tie at its widest point should be about as wide as the lapel (maybe minus 1-2 cm) at its widest point to achieve a well-balanced look. In practical terms, this roughly translates to the following: if you wear a EU 50 or 52 (US/UK 40 or 42) you will be best served with a 9 cm tie, if you’re under that, 8 cm is the way to go. Or, as a visual guide: I always wear our 9 cm ties, Benedikt wears 8 cm.
But that’s the theory. It’s fun to obsess about these things, but at the end of the day: wear what you feel best in.