To some, pocket squares are like bowties—one minute a smart and somewhat whimsical must-have, the next an eye-rolling affectation that marks a wearer as an office dandy. The latter held until the advent of Mad Men. Suddenly, everyone was Don Draper with a flash of silk popping out of their jacket pocket. Still, used sparingly, a bloom of paisley or plaid really can add pizzaz. I certainly thought so when a Nordstrom salesperson helped me pick one out recently. It wasn’t until I got to the register that I realized I was forking over $85 for that little hanky. It did look great and I was in a hurry, so I kept it. But you don’t have to make the same mistake. Visit a Chicago-based online company called The Tie Bar, and click through dozens of pages of pocket squares of every stripe and fabric—with most slipping into your jacket for around $10. What’s more, the site offers a similar cornucopia of highly affordable neckties, cufflinks, and socks. I only wish I’d known when I was at Nordstrom. I would have bought The Tie Bar’s orange and brown Organic Paisley-Rust pocket square for a cool $8 (regular size; $12 for large) and had money left over to accessorize 10 more jackets.
$8 at The Tie Bar