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Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Pocket Squares for Christmas

After my initial Christmas idea fell through I decided to make Ansell some pocket squares with various cool fabrics from Spoonflower.com.  Ansell has recently bought a couple of new suits and being a fashion sensible gent liked all the cool stuff that goes with it including cuff links, the occasional tie pin, and pocket squares.

Some may ask, “Do people still wear pocket squares?”
My answer is “If you’re awesome you do.”


Men rarely get to dress up and even the classic suit has been diminished from a three piece with cane and hat to something far more simplistic.

Why do you look so confused? Lost your pocket square?

But I stray from my point. Ansell likes pocket squares but wanted something more unique than the average paisley crap they usually sell, so Spoonflower.com and my sewing machine stepped forth to fill the void.


I choose the fabric “Cotton Voile” since Spoonflower said it was good for handkerchiefs. I only had to buy the fat swatch size (which averages $5 each) as that is about the size of a pocket square. This was great since my dollar stretched father and I was able to get 6 fabrics.

Of course I had to get fast shipping or else I would have had a really good bargain. I was still a little worried that the fabric wouldn’t reach me in time since Arika’s had some problems with Spoonflower’s shipping but they were good to me. My package arrived within 10 days of ordering.

Upon opening though I was immediately disappointed with the “Cotton Voile” fabric. The description is: “100% cotton voile, combed, delicate, silky texture." 
Where was the silkyness? I’d wanted something between cotton and silk but this was neither. The threads were very far apart. Compared to the quilting weight cotton fabric it seemed very threadbare indeed.

Cotton Voile
Quilting Weight Cotton

The fabric was also so thin that it was easy to see through.

The ironing board is rife with fruit.

To combat future fabric choice related disappointment I have since ordered the fabric sampling book from Spoonflower. It arrived today!

However, despite the poor fabric choice the print was really lovely. Unfortunately, again due to the fabric itself, I felt the colors were not as saturated as they could have been. Never the less I was really impressed with the quality of the ink and print.

Mesoamerican Idols by Kristi_Oh & Mustache Gallery by Avelis

La Chasse & Toy Soldier both by Nalo_Hopkinson 

Spiral Branches by Helenklebesadel & Ro-co-co and a Bottle of Rum by Ceanirminger

Ideally I would have put a backing on but there was no time so I ironed the sides into their hemming lines so there would be no errors. After that it was a simple case of sewing in a straight line.

Sadly they weren’t as perfectly square as I would have liked but you’ll never notice.

To keep it styling and unique I also wanted a really cool box to put them in and I thought of the beautiful boxes cigars come in. Ansell loves cigars and we had a good cigar shop close to where I lived. Idea!

At the cigar shop I spoke to the manager and he let me rustle around in the cigar room for any empty boxes that I fancied. After much deliberation I picked a gorgeous light wood Arturo Fuente box with red, black, white and gold detailing. Not only was it the best box but also Arturo Fuente is Ansell’s favorite cigar brand and we actually met the owner last summer.


Of course I had to buy a really nice Arturo Fuente Reserve cigar to go with it to compliment Ansell’s vice. The manager was very kind and sold the beautiful box to me for $1!

I bought an Arturo Fuente Romeo & Juliet box too since I thought it would be a beautiful method of holding my threads and bobbins.


Here is Ansell’s present put together.

In the end, Ansell received the pocket squares in the cigar box, a bar of lemon soap (a scent he loves), and his primo cigar. We opened our presents to each other in Savannah, GA.

Merry Christmas Ansell!


  1. I'm sorry the fabric wasn't as thick as you wanted. I had the same problem with spoonflower but it's not annoying enough to keep from buying from the company. I like the fabric you picked, Spiral branches is particularly interesting, it looks like veins.

  2. Yes, that's why I ended up getting the $1 swatch book to avoid the fabric issue in the future, but def not a bad enough experience for me to not use Spoonflower. I just like them too much!

    I really like the branches one. She has some cool designs using organic stuff for inspiration.