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The pocket square first seems to have become popular during the 1400’s as an accessory worn by wealthy men. Squares of cloth have been worn by men throughout history, dating back to the ancient Egyptians.

 But the pocket square that we know today can be traced back to the handkerchiefs worn by wealthy men in the 1400’s. In France, men used to put perfume on their squares so that they did not have to smell the foul smells of most people, who did not have the most hygienic bathing routines. 

A popular story is that Marie Antoinette got upset that the handkerchiefs were  not all one size, so she got King Louis XVI to make a law that all handkerchiefs were to be 16” x 16”, which is the traditional size of the pocket square still today.

When the 2 piece suit became popular in the 19th century, men did not want to have their nice, expensive handkerchief mixed in with their dirty coins. So their solution was to move their handkerchief to their left breast pocket.

 That was the beginning of the pocket square. 

In the 1920’s, men would wear pocket squares with their suit. During this time the pocket square transitioned from being a practical thing to have, to a fashion accessory.  During the 20’s, men would wear their pocket square with a suit, vest and the signature fedora hat which was very popular during that decade.

In the 40’s and the 50’s, having a handkerchief in your pocket was considered to be unclean. So people stopped carrying their handkerchief in their breast pocket. Also, the Kleenex Company was founded in 1924, which was the first time that disposable handkerchiefs were invented. This permanently made the pocket square a fashion accessory.

Now pocket squares are worn by men all over. Pocket squares are great accessories that add a little bit of color and flair to your outfit. If you have on a plain shirt and plain jacket, a pocket square can help make your outfit have some color which makes you stand out and have some character to your outfit. You can coordinate a pocket square with a bow tie, or you can add a little bit of color to your outfit if you add a pocket square to your jacket when you are not wearing a bow tie.


Today, Beehive Bow Ties offers many different options for pocket squares. Each one is of pure silk with hand-rolled edges. The pocket squares are all 16 x 16 inches. The pocket squares in the Beehive Bow Tie collection coordinate elegantly with the bow ties in our collection. Click here to check out Beehive Bow ties pocket squares.