Apr 17, 2009

How To Wear A Pocket Square

I've been noticing a revival of the breast pocket handkerchief. I like the look but I'm not sure how to wear it. Tips? via email

You're right. No longer just a staple with the Rex Harrison crowd, the handkerchief, aka the pocket square, is making a comeback. Like a pair of fine shoes, a well made handkerchief can add zap to an otherwise dull outfit.
Here are five tips to follow when adding a handkerchief to your ensemble.
1. The handkerchief should not match the tie.
2. It should be placed in the breast pocket like it is being used. To achieve this look fold the handkerchief into a square. Pinch the fabric in the middle. Pick it up. Fold the bottom portion and insert into the breast pocket folded bit down. The points of the handkerchief should be pointing out with gusto.
3. A white handkerchief should only be worn with a white shirt.
4. To fully achieve the elegance a handkerchief implies, it should have a hand-rolled hem.
5. Don't reserve the handkerchief only for suits. If wearing a vest without a jacket, add a handkerchief in the vest breast pocket for some extra flare. A silk handkerchief added to a blazer with jeans adds sophistication.

Earth 88