Bow ties are becoming big and there is no sign that this will change. I think this is more than just a trend. There is a growing need in the male fashion scene for diversity and bow ties fulfill that role without the stench of a trend. Unlike ties, there is no shame in using clip on bow ties. In fact most stores that are carrying bow ties are carrying the clip on kind. If you choose to wear a bow tie frequently, it will tend to have a whimsical air. The playfulness of a bow tie will diminish the formality that is usually associated with bow ties.
Whimsical however does not mean goofy. When choosing a bow ties opt for slimmer kind, it is a more refined look. As to the pattern, the rules that apply to ties apply to bow ties. That is to say that your bow ties should be as well chosen as a tie, and if you choose to wear a pocket square while wearing a bow tie do not go matchy-matchy. You should not be afraid to don on a bow tie, rather wear it proudly and stylishly.