Pocket Squares: London vs New York

Written by Martin Lucas

The Science of Small Details

I freaking love my job! Fashion Science is awesome: part opinion, part machine, part analysis and 100% science. I love it as I love Fashion; following your passion sets you free! After two years of research, study and testing, we can model how to help any fashion service, brand, and e-commerce increase growth. We love examining cultural variances when it comes to fashion, kicking off here with pocket squares and how the styling plays out on Instagram between iconic two iconic capitals: London and New York. The aesthetics and fold are key with a pocket square, not just in how you’d wear it but in how to present it in your advertising. The key is to make it look awesome but attainable; most men don’t know how to do anything but the basic slight fold and yet the Bunch of Flowers look is so easy to do. Here are some of my favourite posts from New York:
The combination of showing tie and square together allows the potential buyer to feel the outfit. I also really love the colourway aesthetic of playing one off against the other. Post by @paul_rock_city
Whilst our testing always shows the best results come from closer-up pictures of accessories, this one is amazing because of the dimensions it shows, especially the sticky-out bit of the pocket square. Love it! Post by @StPercySquares
‘Cool’ is my ultimate complimentary word; get used to it as it’s my gold standard. Remember that advertising fashion works so, so, so much better when you make it look cool AND obtainable. Look at the shirt - the casual but sophisticated modelling - and then the impact of the pattern AND the fold of the square. Very cool. Post by @shopmadelc
So, New York nailed it! Let’s see how London competes: A sartorial firework! Popped collar showing - this is a true gentleman at play (obvs, London!). The texture of the suit softens a lighter tie and what’s left? That pocket square: amazing colourway, beautiful fold. I heart this! Post by @pocketandfold
Salute the small details; this is a great image on so many levels. I often talk of what I call the Age of Civility, the world of yesteryear where a true gentleman wore a hat and dressed, well, like a gentleman. For the discerning gentleman, that time is back, and what gentleman would be seen out and about without nailing those small details like a wonderful pocket square pattern and fold! Post by @nothingbutthedetails
A second contender from pocketandfold! As more men are becoming better versed in fashion, you will see more images just like this with a beautiful contrast between the stripes (gentle stripes, yay!) of the suit and the hexagon square. Lovely fold, superb dimensions and depth in this. This came top of the testing when we looked at buyers’ preferences via our model. Post by @pocketandfold
The Winner? We had to hunt around the London data for gems much more deeply than New York. In London there are too many posts just showing the square, not the fold, not the look, not the outfit; I was getting frustrated just surveying patterns. If you don’t show the outfit or create the whole look then you’re leaving people to their imagination and that is an epic fail for accessories; always show the cool! With a heavy heart I say New York wins :-) however great work by all six of the above; they all nailed it.
The Science Part There is no magic bullet to fashion (not in a general sense) for all fashion brands. Why? Because every brand is different, every brand has its own story to tell with its own inspiration and aesthetic. Brands forget that sometimes and can end up following what others do. However, there are some aesthetic standards for each and every piece you are advertising. In the case of pocket squares, after reviewing tens of thousands of data points (86,500 to be exact), running that through a lens of behavioural patterns, neuroscience and creativity, we know that having shots which show the shirt, pocket square and lapels together (giving a sense of the cohesive look) will always sell better. When you can clearly see both shoulders in the photo you are too far away. I could tell you what fold to use too but we keep this little gem a secret for our clients ;-)
This is a opinion piece using a fraction of our model. If you are a fashion label, e-commerce site or market anything related to fashion we can give you a Market Insights Report (a free one-pager) so you can see what gains we can discover for your market.