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In defense of the cotton pocket square

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by The Louche, Dec 19, 2012.

  1. The Louche

    The Louche Senior member

    Oct 31, 2008
    Most "expert" guidance says that linen should be used for the classic white TV-fold pocket square. The reasons are unclear to me, and I disagree that linen is the best choice--I think that cotton makes the best choice. For starters, hand-rolled cotton hankerchiefs are available for about 1/4 the price of their linen counterparts. Also consider that cotton is easier to press and fold, has a cleaner white color, and--perhaps most importantly--has a smoother, slightly more formal hand in general, and I see no reason why linen seems to be the overwhelmingly preferred choice.

    What do you think?
  2. Sam Hober

    Sam Hober Senior member Dubiously Honored

    Jan 4, 2005
    Chiang Mai, Thailand

    The Louche,

    You make a good point.

    Historically, I can tell you that my father who is 85 and whose career was in the New York fashion industry only wears cotton pocket squares and he explained to me when I asked a long time ago that the popularity of linen pocket squares is more of a recent fashion. Quite often experts who write books and articles are good writers but have limited experience actually making clothes and really knowing the industry - but they write well.

    Linen makes a nice crisp fold and is good for simple pocket square folds.

    But cotton is softer and has a great look.

    I disagree about the cleaner white and lower prices for cotton. High end Egyptian cotton is very expensive.

    Cotton of course is much better at helping damsels in distress.

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