Squares, Pocket Squares

Men's fashion...wait, hold on a second--

All right, I had to step away from the keyboard and get my laughter under control before I could begin typing again, anyway...

The state of men's fashion is pretty close to being at an all-time low (with maybe the '70s being the most horrid--but I'll give them one thing--they owned it, and at least tried, the male of the 2010s does not try at all). The ape creatures of the Indus (thank you, Blackadder (a hilarious BBC show from the '80s starring Rowan Atkinson)) attired themselves better than the male of the 2010s.

What do we have now but a bunch of slobs (who simply just don't give a hoot) and hipsters (who try too hard and end up looking silly)? I'll take this one-step further and say that even the men who wear suits, or at least blazers and sport coats over an honest-to-goodness button-down shirt look pretty drab and boring.

I didn't intend this diatribe, and I didn't intend to author a treatise on the demise of male fashion, my apologies. But I just can't stand how men attire themselves these days. Wow, what a digression.

  Without the pocket square, this suit is forgettable.

Without the pocket square, this suit is forgettable.

Back to squares--pocket squares--an easy and often overlooked way to add a dash of style and catch attention. This is a way to show people you care about, and actually consider your appearance.

I've been wanting to write about pocket squares for quite some time now, and then I opened up the latest issue of The Chap (a most excellent British magazine with oodles of fun tips and advice) only to find an entire article on the pocket square.

I should have taken a photo without the pocket square to illustrate how much the simple art deco type fold I used there dressed up the suit.

   Art Deco fold, I've also seen this called Three Stairs

Art Deco fold, I've also seen this called Three Stairs

What becomes noticeable in the closeup are the diagonal lines from the folds I used. This is a neat fold I use quite often. I call it the art deco fold, but I've seen it called three stairs. At first glance, this fold is a simple one point fold, but this is layered and adds more depth than just making a single point.


And here is a second type of fold--a four pointer.  Without getting into the weeds too much here, I am going to point out that all of these folds are not hard to achieve.

Here is a site that will give you some step-by-step instructions for folding pocket squares, from the basic folds all the way the to the more exotic: Sam Hober -- the website sells pocket squares and ties.

The material matters as well. Some folds, like the two I have in the larger photos work better with crisp cotton, while there are some puffier folds much better suited to silk.


Here is a gallery showing some other combinations using silk pocket squares. 

Notice how the pocket squares enhance the jacket they are paired with, including the smoking jacket (the black jacket with white piping with the crimson pocket square).

Pocket squares are fairly inexpensive. Here is a quick story.  A few days ago at work I wore the black suit in the photo up top to work with the four point pocket square. I didn't take the suit jacket off before I spoke to a few people I work with--and they all asked why I was so dressed up. Now, I normally wear suits, jackets, sport coats, etc, but what they noticed was the pocket square.