Product Focus: The School of Athens Collection

This week we wanted to honour one of our most timeless and classic artworks celebrating Greek philosophy. An incredibly popular design since producing it as a bespoke commission for a customer, this weeks pocket square features the Raphael masterpiece, The School of Athens. 

Raphael’s fresco The School of Athens has come to symbolise the marriage of art, philosophy, and science, a hallmark of the Italian Renaissance. Painted between 1509 and 1511, it is located in the first of the four rooms designed by Raphael, the Stanza della Segnatura, Vatican City.

Did You Know? - Experts have suggested that nearly every great ancient Greek philosopher can be found in the painting, but determining which are depicted is difficult since Raphael made no designations outside possible likenesses, and no contemporary documents explain the painting. Can you spot Socrates?


The painting has long been seen as "Raphael's masterpiece and the perfect embodiment of the classical spirit of the Renaissance". The soft colour palette and exceptionally detailed back story from one of the Renaissance's greats make this a perfect addition to our collection as both a tailored jacket lining or a beautiful silk hand-rolled pocket square.


The School of Athens was hugely influential at the time and is remembered as the perfection of artistic ideals from the period. The painting features several figures from classical Greece and is a statement about the coexistence of pagan Greek philosophy and modern Christian Italian culture as the basis for European civilization.

The School of Athens was painted during the Italian Renaissance, a period which lasted from roughly 1300 to 1600. The Renaissance was mainly characterised by a wealthy new intellectual elite class with a huge passion for the arts. Religious fervour was also at its height.

The School of Athens is one of four wall frescoes in the Stanza della Segnatura, Vatican Palace. The room was set to be Julius’ library. Therefore, Raphael’s overall concept balances the contents of what would have been in the pope’s study.

In the 15th century, a tradition of decorating private libraries with portraits of great thinkers was common. However, Raphael took the idea to a whole new level with massive compositions that reflected philosophy, theology, literature, and jurisprudence.

Read as a whole, they immediately transmitted the intellect of the pope and would have sparked a discussion between cultured minds that were lucky enough to enter into this private space.

Frescoes in the Stanza della Segnatura 


This historic fine artwork is light in colour and predominately cream and gold in tone, thus creating a rich backdrop and complementary palette to suit all types of jackets and clothing.

Match With a Navy Jacket
Most pocket squares would suit our navy made to order tailored jacket as this classic menswear item is extremely versatile and wearable across smart and casual uses. The School of Athens painting has rich cream and blue tones from the sky backdrop alongside gold outlines to create a neutral palette that works beautifully with any navy textured background.


Pair With Matching Silk Lining
Want to make a statement? Why not double up with this pocket square and purchase our School of Athens silk jacket lining. Our linings can be bought as individual panels for you to take to your tailor or added as a lining option through our bespoke tailored jacket collection. 

The artwork is bold and instantly recognisable, so pairing the pocket square with your jacket lining is one way to be seen and truly stand out. Also, that Instagram shot is going to be genuinely unbeatable! 

Complement With A Cream Tie
Tonal dressing is a current and creative way of combining the same colour across different tones, fabrics and hues to match any outfit and tie it together. In this instance, we would create a tonal ensemble by pairing it with our new Shantung Silk Tie in cream and blue.

The colours are similar to the hues within the artwork of the School Of Athens. Therefore, they will pair nicely together to bring your ensemble together quickly.

What Makes Our Pocket Squares So Special?

1. We use the finest mulberry silk with our silk pocket squares and linings. The quality of the fabric can be seen in the texture and the level of detail and vibrancy of the finished product. All our silks are printed in Macclesfield, England, an area renowned for silk printing for the past 200 years.
2. We take the utmost care in printing our silk pocket squares and linings which results in truly remarkable levels of detail. Faces, objects and colours are sharp and well defined to give a truly stunning finish. We also take exceptional care with the colour bleed, so the print is almost as crisp on the back as it is on the front, allowing for an unlimited number of folds to a pocket square.
3. The art of hand rolling pocket squares is a unique craft and truly makes each piece individual and unique. We feel that the precision and care taken by our skilled artisans gives each square its own unique character, finish and feel. To create the finest rolled hems, the edge of the silk must be softy turned over with a handheld needle and then small stitches are inserted approximately one half to one centimetre apart around the edge, creating a supple yet prominent border.
4. We believe that 40cm is the minimum size for a high quality pocket square. Any smaller and it will slide down inside your pocket with any movement of your jacket, while it limits the number of folds you can achieve as there is not enough volume to hold it in place. It goes without saying we would never advocate any form of pocket square holder. All our pocket squares are either 42cm x 42cm or 40cm x 40cm.

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