One of my many issues with the way most men dress is the void of color dressing their breast pocket. It seems that most men in their 20’s are averse to sport a pocket square or handkerchief. It is regarded as too pretentious, unneccessary or old man-esque. This is saddening, as there are few things that can bring an ensemble together as well as a pocket square. The primary purpose of a pocket square is aesthetic. A well matched pocket square will tie to the wearers tie or shirt. There should be some sort of dialogue of color between the items. Pocket squares look best when they look like they were thought of at the last minute, a sort of impromptu afterthought to an outfit. However, never, ever, ever should the square be of the same pattern as the tie, ever. It will look too put together and thought out, it will also draw attention away from the wearers face.
It is best to start with a plain white handkerchief and then move to more complex combinations. White will go with almost anything and will look best when matched with shirts that have white as the base color and ties that have white in them. The best squares will be made of Irish linen or silk and have hand rolled and stitched, not machine stitched, edges.
There are many ways to place a pocket square in one’s pocket. The easiest is to pinch the square in the middle, lift it up, fold it roughly in half which leaving only the 4 corners exposed and then place in the pocket (The final product is shown above, more square is left showing than recommended. This was done for purposes of example). It is also recommended that the peaks create a slanting line that follows that of the pocket (also as seen above), this will help maintain the diagonal line, not a horizontal line, across the body. Utilizing a pocket square is one of the easiest and most effective ways to elevate the appearance of any man in a jacket or suit. It’s not pretentious, it’s elegant.