Get Squared Away

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a lit­tle silk in the pocket says so much. IT’S EASY TO turn up your nose at the pocket square. Un­like its cot­ton cousin the hand­ker­chief, which has a clear util­i­tar­ian pur­pose, a linen or silk square is purely for show. But with busi­ness-ca­sual now busi­ness as usual, the pocket square has re­turned, front and off-cen­ter, to add a dash of panache with­out mak­ing you look like a stiff. In 2015 Men’s Wear­house re­ported a 50% in­crease in pocket square sales over the past five years, and dap­per men such as Daniel Craig, David Beck­ham and CNN’S Jake Tap­per are rarely seen with­out one.

As for how to wear it, the first rule is never match it to a tie (if you still even wear one). Be­yond that, there are count­less ways to let it flow from your jacket pocket—aside from a sim­ple straight fold—so start with these two ba­sic meth­ods: Pick it up from the cen­ter of the square and de­cide whether you want points up (so they rise like sta­lag­mites) or down (to cre­ate a sim­ple puff). Fi­nesse as needed. You re­ally can’t blow it—or into it.

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