November 15, 2017

The Tie and Pocket Square Set - Why they are a crime against good dressing

It may seem the obvious way to coordinate your accessories, directly matching your tie and pocket square, indeed, many mainstream retailers will even offer the dreaded matching pocket square and tie as a set!

However, it is no exaggeration to say that pocket square and tie sets are right near the top of the list of fashion faux pas for the well-dressed man.

In the blog post we will cover:

  • Why you should never buy a matching tie and pocket square set
  • How to choose a tie and pocket square combination 
  • Some examples of how to match colours of your tie and pocket square
  • Some examples of complementary tie and pocket square colours


Tie and Pocket Square Set - The Basic Rules

These are relatively simple. What you are looking to do is to take a colour from your tie and reflect that as a secondary colour in your pocket square, or vice versa. So the colours in the pocket square should accentuate the colours in the tie, but do not directly match it. 

Matching tie and pocket square


The other option is to employ complementary colours, for example, a burgundy red tie will always go well with pocket squares that have a dominant element of dark green.

Below we've highlighted some options that will always have you looking on top of your sartorial game. 


Burgundy tie reflected in a dark red pocket square 

A burgundy tie is a staple of many men's wardrobe and is a classic tie colour. As you can see from the three images below, a deep red accent in the pocket square is the perfect complement to this tie. The jackets below are all heavily textured and patterned but this combination of colours works just as well with a more traditional plain navy or grey jacket.

Burgundy and tie set

For reference these products can be viewed on the following links:

Tie: Burgundy Cashmere Tie

Pocket Square First Image: The Annunciation, With Saint Emidius

Pocket Square Middle Image: Samson and Delilah

Pocket Square Final Image: The Destruction of Pompeii and Herculaneum


Green Tie with green accented pocket square

Although not as prominent (and some would say not as powerful) as a burgundy tie, a green tie is a popular option being a classic primary colour.

Whether they are plain or patterned, you can never go wrong by having a pop of green in your pocket square to complement your green tie. In the examples below the first image has a small reflection of greens and browns that work nicely with the patterned tie. The middle image has a more prominent use of greens in the pocket square, while the final image uses just a small pop with a lighter shade. The second and third image also shows off how a similar tie can be paired with either a plain jacket and more discreet fold for a more formal look, or equally well with a bold jacket pattern, flamboyant pocket square and fold for a less formal look, but more striking look.

Green tie and pocket square

Products similar to the above can be found on the following links:

Patterned Tie: Green and Blue Leaf Silk Tie

Plain Green Tie: Green Wool Tie

Pocket Square First Image: The Annunciation, With Saint Emidius

Pocket Square Second Image: The Battle of Trafalgar

Pocket Square Third Image: Kinglet Calyptura


Patterned navy tie with blue accented pocket square 

Much like the burgundy tie, the patterned navy tie is definitely a staple of most men's wardrobes. The reason it's such an elegant choice is it always works beautifully with your classic business jacket colours of navy and grey.

When pairing your pocket square with a patterned navy tie you have the choice of complementing the navy or reflecting the secondary colour of the pattern. In the first image below the white polka dots are reflected in the white base of the pocket square, while the deep burnt yellow also provides a beautiful contrast with navy.

The second image is similar with the light coloured diamond repeat mirrored in the pocket square, wherein the final image the different shades of blue all complement each other with the more casual shirt and jacket providing a more relaxed look. 

Navy tie and pocket square set

Similar products to the images above.

Wool Tie: Navy and Red Check Wool Tie

Silk Tie: Navy and Red Floral Repeat Tie 

Pocket Square First Image: The City of New York

Pocket Square Second Image: Hummingbird

Pocket Square Third Image: Venice: The Basin of San Marco on Ascension Day

Conclusion

So it really is quite straightforward. You have huge flexibility with your tie and pocket square combinations and as long as you avoid pocket square and tie sets and only match elements of the colours you will always have the look of a man displaying satorial elegance.