How to fold a pocket square

14 August 2015

How to fold a pocket square

An often overlooked accessory, the pocket square trend has been gaining momentum in recent times with every Tom, Dick and Harry embracing the finishing touch that is a neatly folded handkerchief in your breast pocket. But with such popularity comes a wealth of wearers that are asking us how to do it. Well, as always, we're here to help. So read on to find out how you can become a champion pocket square wearer.

Always Complement, Never Duplicate

Well… almost never.

 

Learn the folds

There are many ways to fold a pocket square, but the majority of men make use of these nine folds.

Presidential Fold
Worn on very formal occasions but also suitable for casual wear

One-Point Fold
Worn in the office or with a blazer

Two-Point Fold
Another one found primarily in the boardroom

Three-Point Fold
For businessmen with sartorial savviness

Cagney Fold
Suitable for business or casual wear

Puff Fold
Very stylish and though it’s not a formal fold, it can be worn on any occasion

Winged Puff Fold
Worn at semi-formal and smart casual events

Scallop Fold
A popular fold for weddings and other social occasions

Dunaway Fold
For business or casual wear

Mastering all of the folds is no easy feat but if you want to give it a try then check out this excellent infographic describing the method for each fold.

 

Know The Rules

 

Colours
When choosing plain colours, matching your tie and pocket square is an easy trap to fall into for those that are unschooled in the use of this essential accessory. This is a rule that can be easily broken, with contrasting colours adding more flair.

Plain Squares – Your square can match a single colour in a patterned or striped tie or complement the colour of your shirt. So a blue shirt would work well with a square that is a contrasting shade of blue.
Patterned Squares – One colour in the pattern should match or complement either your shirt or tie colour. If your tie is patterned, then it can match one of the colours within that pattern

Don’t Complicate Things

Remember while this is a key element in your ensemble, there will only be a few centimetres on show at any time. So try not to fret too much over your choice of pattern when purchasing a pocket square, it’s the colour that’s most important.

Pay for Quality

As you may know, we are advocates of investing in quality tailored suits and shirts, a pocket square is no different. Yes, it may only be an accessory, but you want your pocket square to stand up to close inspection. It’s a part of your outfit that draws the eye and should anyone take a deeper interest, it’s best if they don’t discover a poorly stitched effort or worse, your mother’s old scarf.

A Pocket Square for Show, a Handkerchief to Blow

It’s an old Irish proverb that perfectly sums up the purpose of the pocket square while also reminding you that a good old handkerchief should be in your inside pocket in case of any mishaps.

Know When to Abstain

Sometimes no matter what pocket square you try, nothing seems to work with your outfit. Like we said earlier regarding colours and patterns, there comes a time when you should trust your instinct and go without rather than wearing something that you might regret later. Embarrassing style choices have a habit of multiplying tenfold through the lens of a camera.

Follow these rules to be considered the most stylish man in the office, but break a few and you just might become a sartorial legend. Either way you’ll be on the path to being a true pocket square aficionado of the modern age.