Friday, January 28, 2011

Urban Practicality: Cassette Holder = Tie Rack

A local used record store was going out of business, and I'm apparently the only person in the city who feels that a cocktail party is best paired with 1960's Bossa Nova on vinyl, because the records were in abundance at $1-3 a piece.  Bossa Nova, laughter, and smoke (acceptable then) would waft up the stairs to where the children would sneak over and sit in pajamas, listening to scandalous gossip/implausible anecdotes from well-dressed guests, occasionally receiving an illegally diverted platter of sandwiches or small cakes.

The records aside, my best find was an old cassette holder which displayed all genre of tape in the rear of the shop.  I asked the manager if it was for sale, and he thought for a moment, and finally answered "Um... sure.  Ten bucks?"  Yes... ten dollars will be fine.  I had already un-run my tie to fold it and take measure, which worked.  I carried the awkward and foolish hunk of oak (yes, oak) and hardboard home, and threw some of my ties into it.  Softly folded to halves four times, they fit well. 

I decided not to remove the "ROCK" label that the record store had pasted on to tell browsers where they could find Van Halen and Rose Tattoo cassettes within the shop.  It was a nice reminder of the origin.

Mounting it on the wall is tricky, because it is pretty heavy, and a strong cleat will be needed to actually hold it up, but the ties are none the worse for the gentle folding they get, and it actually looks pretty nice.

If you have a large number of ties, it won't hold all of them, but in terms of economy of space, it can't get much better.  Bowties are obviously exempt from the practicality of this holder, but they occupy far less of the precious urban indoor real estate to begin with.

I have spent far too long experimenting with every manner of tie holder, from wagon-wheel-style spokes to rotating wooden dispensers... none of which worked for me.  Generally, the thrift shop shopper or thrifty shopper has a larger selection of ties than most men under fifty years old, so why not turn your ties into a functional sculpture? 


  1. Brilliant idea to showcase your ties. I might have to do something similar for my favorite ones.

    The Cable Knit Collegian

  2. This is actually an amazing idea. I have a tie rack that is completely overflowing, and two hangers bowing with the weight of even more.

    If I can find an oak holder like the one you have above (and I think I will, it will just take some time), I'm going to implement this myself. With plaster walls, though, it might be a trick for hanging...

  3. I used to use clear parts drawers, the sort you see in electricians workshops, to store my ties. They are fairly cheap and practical, but take up a lot of room.

    I have since moved on to an Ikea Komplemet tie hanger. I know, I should hang my head in shame.

  4. Brilliant. Just beautiful.

    My ties, some 300 of them, hang behind the door in my closet. There are three racks which handle the brunt. However, I am out of space and am loathe to get rid of any. I like the idea of displaying a few of the more colourful as you do.


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