The pocket square seems to be one of those final touches we men add sometimes out of obligation, other times to lift a dull ensemble. It’s a finishing touch that can instantly elevate a look from blending in to getting noticed. There’s a pocket there, so adding something just seems appropriate. That said, a little caution is crucial here so one doesn’t end up looking like an attention-seeking peacock.
Attention to scale is vital when blending a patterned square. I’ve tried some outlandish combinations in the past. All attempts were under the guise of “well the colors work together.” The colors may have, but the patterns looked god-awful together.If the tie has bold stripes, the pocket square shouldn’t be equally attention-grabbing. There is a delicate balance these two dance partners have. They have to work in tandem, one must lead, the other, follow. Otherwise, it’s just a lot of shit going on up top.
There are many options for inserting the square into the breast pocket. I’m all for keeping it simple. Too many ridiculous folds exist with all their damn points and triangles. It’s not fucking origami! Just fold it or plop it.
Linen and cotton squares have the heft to be folded and can also be plopped. Wool and silk squares, structurally, look better plopped with abandon.
One needn’t spend minutes, with the plural ‘s’, on the arrangement of the square. Of course, every one in a while you’ll notice your poor square has slipped into a slumber below the pocket. At this point, help a brotha out and fidget with it. The same goes for the exploding squares (like the one below), tuck ‘em back in.
Otherwise, leave it the hell alone.
This brings me to one of those ‘rules’ that should probably always be followed. The matching tie/square looks tacky. Why? It lacks imagination. Adults have lived long enough to come up with another color that goes with blue other than blue. Those who match, look like tactless louts who routinely takes the easy way out, cheat on their taxes and throw chicken bones in the collection plate, thinking it was the trash can. Instead of matching, find a harmony with a mix of colors.
Take cues from your tie, socks, an overcheck in your coat, the color of the dial on your watch, hell, even your pants. There are many sources of inspiration on how to blend colors effectively. Nature gives us a great many options on colors that blend nicely. Take the cues from art.
There’s a never a reason for a man to match, ever. Said brutes shouldn’t be trusted in matters of taste or otherwise.
White that said, coordinating a white shirt with a white pocket square will never fail.