Pocket Squares are the most overlooked menswear accessory – their addition to any outfit can immediately add an abundance of style. Given the cost and ease of use, in my opinion they represent the best value in any menswear accessory. There are three key points to remember when looking to add a pocket square: colour, fabric and fold. Keep reading further as I break down these three points further.
As always the key with choosing the right colour is to compliment, not match. Neutral colours are always the safer option , particularly when using flamboyant folds that show a lot of the square. Like other accessories such as ties, the colour should match the occasion you may be dressing for. A white square matches well with nearly every outfit, and should always be worn to any event requiring a tuxedo.
The majority of pocket squares are made in silk as the material is lightweight and easy to shape. The other three predominant materials used are cotton, wool and linen. I’d recommend looking for a silk blend to provide more texture and personality to the square. 100% silk pocket squares can be shiny and overstated for everyday use.
Like tying a neck tie, the folding of a pocket square is an art not a science. There are two staple folds I would recommend using, each is simple and stylish. Down further I have provided a GQ video where they’ve nailed the explanation of these two basic folds.
The first is commonly know as the ‘Presidential’. This is where the square is neatly folded with a straight square shape obtruding from the pocket. This is a fantastic go to for corporate dressing as well as black tie occasions.
The puff fold opens the door for a bit more versatility and ‘sprezzatura’. The square is pulled tightly through your hand and folded over once. Following this you can choose whether you have the corners facing up (providing a flared look) or facing down leaving a ‘puffed’ square poking out.
A simple, starting video for any gentleman:
If you’re new to pocket squares I would recommend the following three as a start:
- White silk for black tie and formal ocassions
- Mid blue chambray square for casual wear and sports jackets
- Pastel coloured square with funky pattern
If you have any questions or need a hand choosing/folding your next square, please get in contact.
Miles Wharton – Founder – The Bespoke Corner