It’s hard competing with other men in the room…
Classic suits, fancy ties & watches, polished shoes…
It’s like a sea of Bond clones…
How do you get an edge and be that guy – the one who makes heads turn and nod in approval?
Simple – check your jacket breast pocket… something’s missing…
An accessory that not all guys have (or think of using)…
A pocket square.
It makes a powerful upgrade to your style. Find out why…
A pocket square isn’t something you should find strange or intimidating to use. It’s simply a square piece of fabric that you can fold up in different ways. In its finished form, it’s tucked in your jacket breast pocket looking clean, crisp and elegant.
Some of you may wonder if these are the same as handkerchiefs. As similar as they look, there are distinct differences between pocket squares and handkerchiefs. Pocket squares are primarily used for a sharper, classier style (and less for wiping off stuff).
I’ve met guys who say they don’t wear pocket squares since they’re a little hesitant about drawing attention to themselves in this way. But that’s kind of ironic – by simply showing up in a well-fitted suit or jacket, you’re already setting up yourself for more attention.
It comes to a point where you can either be okay with being like most of the men in the room (which can mean losing out on compliments or potential “connections”), or you can OWN and magnify the sharpness of your style. The whole point of a pocket square is to allow you to do just that – so you can stand out among other well-dressed guys and express your personality through your wardrobe.
In line with that, let’s talk about the #1 fold that all men should learn about: the Presidential Fold. It’s a simple fold that’s perfect for beginners. It does a great job in making your pocket square presentable for formal occasions. Take note: this fold is most suitable for simple solid colors – especially white linen.
Here are the step-by-step instructions for the Presidential Fold:
Presidential Fold – Step #1
Start by placing the pocket square on a flat surface. Make sure it’s fully unfolded and flat. This is where you perform the first fold in half – so that the fabric turns into a literal square.
Presidential Fold – Step #2
Fold the square once again, but this time – it’s not necessarily going to be in half. The goal is to create a rectangular shape that matches the width of your jacket breast pocket. (But in most cases, it actually works fine to just go straight down the middle.)
Presidential Fold – Step #3
This is where you perform one last fold – this time a vertical one which starts from the bottom. The height (or length) of the front side should be about half an inch longer than the height of the covered side.
As shown in the image below, this fold is should not be exact – and all the fabric above the fold line is what’s going to stick out of the breast pocket. So you’ll want to make it a nice, crisp fold.
Presidential Fold – Step #4
Tuck the folded-up square into your jacket breast pocket, snugging it down to the base. Do the necessary adjustments to create a single, smooth strip of visible cloth that’s exposed at the very top.
Neatness is key. So there shouldn’t be any visible overlaps between the edges of the square in this fold. Everything is supposed to look like one solid piece.
Presidential Fold – Things To Remember
- Both pocket squares and jacket breast pockets often come in various sizes. You’ll want to avoid buying irregular-sized pocket squares because they may end up being too tall, short, wide or narrow for your breast pocket.
- If it turns out your pocket square doesn’t quite fit in your breast pocket correctly, here’s a possible solution: when performing the final fold (Step #3), fold the fabric partly from both sides so it adjusts to the desired width. As for the height, fold it more or less until about 1/4-1/2 inches of fabric is seen above the breast pocket.
- In my opinion, the presidential fold looks best if it follows the slant of the pocket. But you can also wear it straight across if that’s your preference.
- Finally, double-check that the pocket square isn't sticking out in front of (as in covering) the jacket lapel. It always looks better tucked in behind the lapel.
The pocket square is a classic accessory. Don’t underestimate what a small and thin piece of cloth can do for your appearance. If folded properly, it takes your jacket style to a whole new level – showing other guests, colleagues or businessmen that you’re way more than just “some regular guy who happens to have a suit on.”
Click below to watch the video – How To Fold The Presidential Fold
Check out our complete guide on how to fold a pocket square.