Neckties from China?!
March 15, 2011 2:25 PM   Subscribe

How much does a quality silk neck tie cost at its point of origin? China, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, etc...

I'll prefix this by saying that after spending some time in Pakistan, I've seen a few parts of the garment industry first hand. I've seen the places where stuff you would buy for $45 is produced for $3 a piece and boxed in containers destined for JC Penney, Sears, The Bay, etc.

However, I never did visit any tie factories, though I bought many very nice ties in Pakistan at retail for about $10 a piece. I'm wondering what the real point of origin cost of a tie is. While shopping for a few gifts on Alibaba's version of eBay (AliExpress) I came across this necktie seller and another place that seems like the same idea selling ties very similar to the ones I bought in Lahore. My questions are:

a) Are these really the same quality of ties you see selling for $65-75 a piece in US shopping malls?

b) I know people have bought things from sites like DealExtreme that ship direct from China, but what's the success rate really like buying direct from China using random AliExpress sellers? Everything seems to be a gold supplier / verified status seller, etc, something that looks like a rubber stamp every vendor gets to encourage trust. I trust it a bit less than eBay and Paypal's payment system...
posted by thewalrus to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (7 answers total)
In 1996 I bought a nice silk tie for US$ 1 or US$ 2 in Hong Kong (I think it was 2 DM). That was the regular street price. I still have it today. It is one of my favorites.
posted by yoyo_nyc at 2:29 PM on March 15, 2011

I'm not sure of average cost but understand that many many ties are produced in Shengzhou, China, which has a massive tie manufacturing cluster. This article might be worth a read.
posted by laukf at 2:47 PM on March 15, 2011

I once sat next to a silk tie salesman on an international flight, and he told me his Made in Italy ties cost him $10 each. Third world countries would obviously be a lot cheaper.
posted by alonsoquijano at 2:49 PM on March 15, 2011

Actually re-reading the article I linkd to above suggests "Prices offered to foreign companies by the major producers in Shengzhou range from USD 1.5 to USD 5 for 100% silk ties".
posted by laukf at 2:50 PM on March 15, 2011 [1 favorite]

I had someone bring me a half dozen or so ties from an out-of-the-way shop in Hong Kong about a year ago. He said he'd paid US$15 for the lot. They are very well made, and the fabric seems to be of a pretty high quality. They are very conservative paisleys and one or two rep ties - I've worn them quite a bit and they really feel like they're going to last quite a while.
posted by OneMonkeysUncle at 2:59 PM on March 15, 2011

I bought a silk tie with matching cufflinks and a tie-pin in Northern Thailand a few weeks back for about $3.

I should've got a few of them, really...
posted by pompomtom at 5:11 PM on March 15, 2011

I don't have any particular knowledge of source-pricing of silk ties other than to confirm buying them for very cheap in the Middle East, where they'd obviously already gone through at least one middle-man.

One thing about your first link: the material is listed as 40% silk, 60% polyester.
posted by empyrean at 7:34 PM on March 15, 2011

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