An Interview with Ryan Sovereign


We've been taken with the Sovereign Beck range of ties for some time. The Brooklyn-based company create snappy, stylish ties that mix wickedly vibrant lines with quirky, illustrated shapes. We interviewed Ryan Sovereign—one half (with William Beck) of the duo behind the label. (See CH's egg-frying, kite-flying, jam session video to get to know them both a little better visually.)

What makes a good tie? Is it the fabric, the color, the texture, the cut, or a mix of everything?
I think a lot of it is the pattern on the tie, whether that is the print or the weave. I own polyester ties, mix material ties and pure silk, all of which I would wear. I will say that a 'wide' tie or a 'skinny' tie is going to make a statement of its own. I try to stay in that mid-range of not going to far either way. When you start going to those extremes, you are looking to make a different statement then just wearing a nice looking tie.

For a while there it seemed that everyone was getting all casual on us, trainers, t-shirts, cargo pants wherever you looked. But smart suits and crisp collared shirts seem to be having a mini-revival. Do you agree?
I totally agree. When we started, the world was still that phase, but we were hoping that things would come back around. They always do, don't they? While being casual and comfortable has its place, there is always something to be said for dressing up and feeling sharp. Who wants to go to a nice restaurant or fashionable event and just see a bunch of dudes in khakis, printed t-shirts and sandals. "Every girl crazy 'bout a sharp dressed man!"
Where does your passion for creating beautiful ties come from?

We both have a strong appreciation and love for design from the turn of the century to today’s designs. We absorb everything we see and want to have a place in that world. I think that the desire to be appreciated now and twenty years really drives us to create a more timeless aspect to our prints instead of just aiming at the immediate trends.

Which one are you wearing now?
If I were wearing one, it would be Levitate.