This week's Product Focus Journal Series explores why a classic white pocket square is so versatile and can complement any tailored jacket. We recently launched our new collection of white pocket squares on-site, and they have become an instant community favourite.
Alongside the history of the white pocket square, we will also explore the best-coloured jackets to wear them with, as well as the different fabric bases we offer and their key benefits.
WHITE CLASSIC POCKET SQUARES: SHOP THE COLLECTION
Perhaps the most classic of all is the men's white pocket square. From the grainy white pocket square, black suit photo's from the early 20th century, this simple square has an illustrious history. The key reason being that this square works with every jacket and pattern combination, there are no real white pocket square rules to take into account when selecting your chosen outfit.
The classic understated look with any white pocket square is the flat fold. This is the most formal look and works for any situation or event you may be attending. Our advice would be that this simple square can be elevated with just a touch of colour, whether that be evidenced coming through in your fold or by having a coloured edging to your square.
HISTORY BEHIND THE CLASSIC WHITE POCKET SQUARE
The white pocket square is a subtle yet sublime menswear accessory that suits any type of tailored jacket, no matter the fabric, pattern or colour. The white pocket square can be the perfect accent piece to finish an outfit.
The original purpose of a pocket square or piece of cloth was to mop up sweat or other messes. It didn’t become the smart fashion accessory we know and love today until the late 14th century where King Richard I of England, who was often mocked for his dress-sense, and was ridiculed for commissioning pieces of cloth used to wipe his mouth and nose.
Differences Between a Handkerchief vs Pocket Square
With the rise of the modern suit in the 19th century, gentlemen settled on putting their fine pocket squares in their suit jacket breast pocket and reserving their inner jacket pocket or trouser pockets for their handkerchiefs. Creating the classic jacket and pocket square combinations we know and love today.
As explained, a pocket square is usually made from finer fabrics such as silk or wool, so is mainly used for fashion and visual appeal, having no practical purpose besides making you look stylish.
The handkerchief however, is meant for more practical uses such as wiping sweat or blowing your nose. A good rule of thumb to follow is this simple rhyme; one for blow, one for show.
SOME CLASSIC COLOUR COMBINATIONS TO WEAR WITH A WHITE POCKET SQUARE
When choosing your pocket square, we would never advise having your tie and pocket square exactly match in colour and pattern, so keep it complementary or contrasting, and you will always look immaculate. Some classic tailored jacket colours work perfectly with any white pocket square, which we discuss below.
There’s nothing quite as essential to a man’s wardrobe as a navy jacket. Whether it’s a classic business suit, a soft-shouldered sports jacket or a traditional navy blazer, it’s a timeless garment that always looks good.
White and navy are a colour combination that cannot go wrong. It’s simple yet genuinely effective at displaying elegance, style and contemporary colours. Navy suit jackets paired with white pocket squares work for all occasions and events due to the versatility of the colour palette.
Wearing black with a white pocket square is perfect for a cocktail party or black-tie event. The classic combination of white pocket square and black bow tie will see you fit in at any fancy occasion.
Wearing a white pocket square with a black jacket or blazer is more associated with formal events, such as funerals, private dinner parties, or black-tie weddings. Therefore it’s always helpful to have new silk white pocket squares to hand to pair effectively.
WHAT FABRICS DO WE OFFER OUR WHITE POCKET SQUARES IN?
Our collection of premium white pocket squares is available across three classic fabric basis, all with their own benefits and unique natural properties.
Linen is a beautiful and high-end fabric that provides a superior step up on classic cotton. Linen is a lightweight, soft and highly absorbent fabric, making it perfect all year round but especially suitable as a fabric base in the warmer months. Our white linen pocket square will complement brighter lightweight summer jackets, but will still work with darker jackets in the cooler months.
Linen is the most casual option within our collection and will work superbly in the Summer months. We suggest using a white linen pocket square at weddings or dinner parties that are predominantly outside.
Within our printed pocket square collection we mainly use silk to highlight print and colours, but it always works superbly on white clean pocket squares. With its unique sheen and soft feel, silk is particularly popular for white pocket squares. We use the finest mulberry silk with our silk pocket squares, meaning the quality of the fabric can be seen in the texture and vibrancy of the finished product.
Silk is historically the most formal fabric option to use for a pocket square, due to the delicate hand-feel and fine drape of the cloth. Silk fabric pocket squares will add a touch of elegance and class to any tailored outfit.
Wool and cashmere is a popular blend to ensure texture within the fabric but with a soft finish and hand-feel. In white, they have a subdued and understated appearance and pair well with a range of tailored jackets or suits in flannel or other heavier-weight fabrics such as tweed. The main benefit of wool blend pocket squares is the durable nature of the fabric which means they can hold folds very well.
SOME OF OUR FAVOURITE WHITE POCKET SQUARE FOLDS
The answer is simple, all types of folds work perfectly with a white pocket square due to its versatility and clean colour, creating a neutral palette. The use of different fabrics such as linen or wool can add unique textures within the pocket square that can totally transform the look of a jacket.
With the latest wedding season in full swing, purchasing a new white pocket square will help you look dapper and stylish at any upcoming ceremonies. Below, as part of our YouTube Pocket Square Fold Series, Alex explores how to fold a pocket square that will be perfect for a wedding.
Watch Now: Pocket Square Folds Series