How-To: Make a No-Fuss Pocket Square

Just a few stitches is all it takes to make a classy pocket square. No one will guess that your "square" isn't even square.

While I’m not a big fan of overly matchy-matchy weddings — a half-dozen girls in identical dresses, hairstyles, shoes, jewelry and makeup are better suited to Radio City Music Hall than weddings, in my opinion — I love when details of weddings appear carefully planned, and naturally, when bridesmaids and groomsmen compliment each other.

That’s why we decided to make pocket squares for our groomsmen.  By ordering extra fabric in the same shade as the bridesmaids’ dresses and making simple pocket squares, we could get a coordinated look without going overboard.

While sewing a pocket square sounds easy at first, there are some tricky steps involved — like hand-rolling a handkerchief hemline, with 30 stitches per inch.  Yikes!  That was too much for my overwhelmed mother and me to take on just days before my wedding.  So instead, my mom came up with an ingenious plan: shape the fabric into what we wanted to appear coming out from the pocket, and then sew that shape into place.

It was incredibly easy — and each pocket square took less than ten minutes to complete, from start to finish.

1.     Select a reasonably stiff fabric (not chiffon) that coordinates with your wedding colors.

2.     For each pocket square, cut roughly ten-inch squares of fabric.  Don’t worry if the cuts aren’t perfectly straight.

3.     Manipulate each square into the desired shape — whether puffed, pleated, or folded flat.  Make sure no rough edges of fabric are visible at the front of each pocket square.  You want the rough edges at the bottom of the pocket squares, if possible.

4.     Pinch the bottom of the fabric together and run a seam that catches all the loose pieces together, binding them in one seam.

5.     Puff or iron each pocket square as necessary.  Tuck inside tux or suit pocket, fluff, and enjoy!

Don't worry about messy seams on your pocket squares -- they'll be safely hidden inside your groomsmens' tux pockets.

An extra perk of pre-shaped pocket squares is that the groomsmen don’t have to worry about folding them properly, and also don’t have to worry about them becoming misshaped as the day progresses.  Your pocket squares won’t look like much when they’re just sitting on a table — but peeking out of a dapper suit pocket, they’ll look fabulous, and none of your guests will know that you cut corners, literally!

We loved how our pocket squares turned out.  In fact, Danny loved them so much that at the last minute he requested he get one, too.

Good luck sewing!

~ Laura


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