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When your suit is in need of that je ne sais quoi touch, just tuck a pocket square into your jacket. Often confused with handkerchiefs, these classic accessories have been used throughout history as perfumed pocket-sized odor blockers and as accoutrements for declaring one’s religious devotion, to name a few.
Nowadays, these sartorial statement-makers are primarily worn in the outer breast pocket as a way to complement a tie (or bowtie) to create a cohesive look. But not just any pocket square will do: It’s important to take into account a few things, such as the fabric, color, pattern, and size. You’ll also want to consider the occasion — the general rule of thumb is that the more formal the event, the smoother your accessory’s fabric should be.
When choosing the best pocket squares for your wardrobe, here’s what you should know.
How to Choose the Best Pocket Squares
Fabric: Like ties and bowties, pocket squares come in a range of fabrics, including cashmere, cotton, linen, polyester blends, silk, suede, tweed, velvet, and wool. Smoother and thinner fabrics, such as silk pocket squares, look best with heavier textured suits, and vice versa.
Size: Most pocket squares range in size from 9-and-7/8-inches to 17-and-3/4 inches. Thicker textiles (such as wool and cotton) are usually smaller so that they’re easier to fold, while thinner fabrics (such as silk) usually measure at least 10 inches so that they don’t lose their shape when folded.
Colors and patterns: When in doubt, opt for neutral colors like white, black, gray, or navy blue. Those shades work best in conservative or formal situations, and more vibrant and playful hues work well in laid-back or creative environments. Of course, rules are always made to be broken, so feel free to break out of the mold if the occasion calls for it.
How to Fold a Pocket Square
There are no shortage of ways to fold a pocket square, but you don’t need to be an origami master to pull one off. If you’re a beginner, here are some common and easy folds:
The one peak fold: Fold your pocket square in half diagonally into a triangle, then into thirds so that a single peak shows when you place your accessory into your pocket. This versatile fold works great for any setting, from galas to brunch.
The two peak fold: Lay your pocket square flat and fold semi-diagonally so that it forms two overlapping triangles. Fold the left and right sides towards the center to create a base, then place into your pocket and style.
The puff fold: After laying your pocket square flat, pinch the center, pull up, and form it into a puff-like shape. Fold the tips up into the puff, place your styled accessory into your pocket, and adjust as needed.
The presidential fold: Fold your pocket square in half from left to right, then fold it again from right to left to create a rectangle. Next, fold it in half from top to bottom. Tuck into your pocket and adjust.
Keep reading for the best pocket squares that’ll upgrade your outfit in any stylish setting.
1. Jeatonge Pocket Squares
This set includes 20 assorted polyester-silk blend pocket squares, each measuring 10 inches by 10 inches. There really is something for everyone: the collection includes 10 solid colors (red, orange, yellow, green, sky blue, navy, purple, pink, white, and black) five polka dot options (red, wine red, blue, purple, and black), and five paisley colorways (red, turquoise, blue, purple, and black).
It also makes a great gift and comes packaged in a 3.4-inch by 4.6-inch storage box.
2. DanDiao Men’s Pocket Squares
You’ll have nearly every colorful option on hand with this pack of 30 pocket squares, which come in every shade of the rainbow. Each piece measures 8.5 inches by 8.5 inches and is made of satin polyester. This pack of pocket squares should be a staple in any guy’s closet.
3. Luther Pike Seattle Pocket Square
This silk-like pocket square is made of soft microfiber that adds a luxe finishing touch to any suit. Measuring nine inches by nine inches, this accessory features a twill weave and single-needle stitching for a tailored and textured look.
It’s available in 11 versatile solid colors: Red, burgundy, gold, champagne tan, sage green, emerald green, royal blue, navy blue, black, gray, and white.
4. SelectedStyle Pure Silk Pocket Square
This 100% pure mulberry silk pocket square weighs 19 momme (the Japanese term that’s similar to thread count), meaning it features a mid-weight weave that offers a luxurious luster. It measures 12 inches by 12 inches, so it’s a larger size that allows you to really play with the pocket square’s shape.
This hand-sewn accessory also features hand-rolled edges that add a high-quality finish. Choose from five different bold and neutral colorways, including white, ivory, black, red, and gold.