Life is starting to move toward some degree of normalcy. We are returning to work, attending social events, making plans to travel, and recreating.
In less than two weeks, I have plans to attend four events that I would not have attended a year ago. I plan to wear four different jackets—a blazer, sports jacket, and two different suit jackets. The accessories that I choose to go with my jackets are critical to the final polish. When deciding on a tie, bow tie, or no tie at all, the choice of a pocket square is an important complimentary accessory. In my opinion, the pocket square should not be the center of attention but a deliberate addition to the outfit. It's part of the polish. This accessory is evidence that the look is intentional, finished, and the gentleman knows how to pay tribute to attention to even the smallest of details.
The typical pocket square ranges in size from 10 x 10 inches to 17 x 17 inches and is made of different materials—cotton, linen, and silk, just to name just a few. Pocket squares may have had their start centuries ago when a pocket handkerchief was kept in the pants pocket for wiping sweat or blowing the nose. But once jackets were made with a breast pocket on the outside, the “handkerchief” was displayed in the pocket and became a fashion first accessory.
For my upcoming attendance at the four events, normally I would choose four different pocket squares to compliment the different jackets I plan to wear for each event. For example, if I wear a blazer for a casual event, I may decide on a solid linen pocket square. For these upcoming events, however, I’ve decided to go in a different direction. I’m going to utilize a 4-pattern pocket square that will suffice for all four events. I can coordinate the patterns with my four different outfits and fold my square so that the desired pattern is on display. The 4-pattern pocket square is a good investment because I get four different looks even if I wear the same jacket.
Here’s My Take on Pocket Squares
- I think every man needs a minimum of 7 pocket squares – one for every day of the week.
- I group my pocket squares by color and store them in a special container in the drawer of my dresser.
- Don’t overlook the simplicity of a white linen pocket square—it should be a staple in your collection.
- I’ve used many different folds, but my “go to” is The Puff.
- Its intentional on my part that my tie or bowtie and pocket square never match perfectly, i.e. an orange silk tie with an orange silk pocket square. If I chose a cotton bowtie with vibrant blue and green stripes, I may choose a patterned silk pocket square with complimentary colors.
My motto: If the blazer has a pocket, you need a pocket square—even if you don’t wear a tie. I call it a "pop in your pocket.”
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