Many of you already know how to use handkerchiefs (if not, don’t panic, it’s all explained right here!)… But few know how to fold your handkerchiefs so that they fit perfectly in your hanky holder or in the back pocket of your jeans.
That’s why today I’m giving you a little hanky origami lesson!
Folding the handkerchief to store it in your handkerchief holder
First, I’ll show you how to fold your handkerchief if you store it in a small fabric pouch, like the hanky holders we have on the online shop.
Please note that the folding technique will vary depending on the size of handkerchief you are using!
Folding the small handkerchief to put it in its case
The small handkerchief is easy to fold! Simply fold it in half, then in half again before slipping it into its handkerchief holder. Here’s our LEE handkerchief in action, inserted in our MARLON handkerchief holder!
Storing your standard sized handkerchief in its holder
In order to store it in its handkerchief holder, the standard-sized handkerchief needs to be folded just as you received it: in 3, then in 3.
First lay the handkerchief on a flat surface, then make a first fold to cover the first third of the handkerchief near you. Then fold that folded section again, forming a long rectangle.
Next, take one of the two ends and fold it over so that the handkerchief covers about a third of the surface. Fold the second end toward the centre, making it a nice square.
You can now put your handkerchief in its pouch!
Check out the KEN handkerchief, inserted in our ADELE hanky holder below:
Folding a large handkerchief
The large handkerchief folds exactly like a standard sized handkerchief, but it fits into a slightly larger hanky holder.
Lay your large handkerchief on a flat surface, then make an initial fold to cover the first third of the handkerchief. Then fold that section again to make a long rectangle. Take one of the two ends of the rectangle and fold it over so that the fabric covers one third of the remaining surface. Fold the second end over the first to make a nice square.
That’s it! Your large handkerchief should fit perfectly in its little pouch.
Take a look at our VIXEN hanky, placed in the MARLON case.
Folding the extra large handkerchief into your hanky case
The extra large handkerchief is a little more complex to fold… But I’m sure you can do it!
First, lay your very large handkerchief on a table or smooth surface. Then, fold one side about 5 to 7 cm. Then, it’s the same principle as a standard or large handkerchief: take that folded section and bring it back about a third towards the centre of the handkerchief. Repeat, to get a long rectangle.
Once you’re done, fold one end of the rectangle to the other side, making sure to stop about a third of the way down the handkerchief. Repeat on the other side to get a rectangle that will fit perfectly into your extra large handkerchief case!
Our JOHN striped handkerchief demonstrates below, along with the MARLON holder!
Folding your handkerchief to store it in your pants pocket
Folding a small handkerchief to place it in your pocket
Folding your small handkerchief to put it in your pocket is very easy: you just have to fold it in two, then in two again before inserting it in your pocket. If you are rather slim and your pocket is too narrow, you can fold it in half again, so that it forms a rectangle instead of a square.
Take a look at the AUGUSTUS hanky in action, below >>
Fold your standard sized handkerchief to store it in your pocket
The standard sized handkerchief can be folded like its smaller cousin: you just have to fold it in half, then in half again before inserting it in your pocket. If you are rather slim and your pants pocket refuses to accommodate your square handkerchief, you can fold it once more in half, so that it forms a rectangle rather than a square (I personally wear slim fitted jeans and that’s the case for me!)
Here’s our silky black handkerchief, NOF, in action:
Inserting your large handkerchief in your pocket
To store it in your pocket, the large handkerchief folds exactly as it does to store it in a case: into a square shape.
Place your large handkerchief on a flat surface, then make a first fold to cover the first third of the handkerchief. Then fold this section again to make a long rectangle. Take one of the two ends of the rectangle and fold it over so that the fabric covers one third of the remaining surface. Fold the second end over the first to make a nice square.
That’s it! Your large handkerchief should fit perfectly in your pocket.
JAMES, our all-white handkerchief in single-ply, is demonstrating this fold below.
Storing your extra large handkerchief in your pocket
In order for it to fit easily into your pocket, the extra-large handkerchief should be carefully folded, just like when you received it in the mail.
First, lay your extra-large handkerchief out on a table or smooth surface. Then, fold one side about 5 to 7 cm. Next, it’s the same principle as a standard or large handkerchief: take that folded section and fold it back about a third toward the centre of the handkerchief. Repeat, to get a long rectangle.
Then fold one end of the rectangle to the other side, making sure to stop about a third of the way down the handkerchief. Repeat on the other side to get a rectangle that will fit perfectly into your pocket!
Our black flannel handkerchief, KURT is featured in the instructions below.
Folding the handkerchief to fit it in the breast pocket of your jacket
If you’re planning on attending a fancy event and need a pocket handkerchief, your standard sized TSHU handkerchief will do just fine. The most elegant and simple fold to master is the “Pesko” fold, which works best with a single ply handkerchief, such as JAMES, KATE or NOF.
Once again, NOF demonstrates.
1. Lay your handkerchief on a flat surface, so that it looks like a square.
2. Fold the left side toward the centre, about 1/3 of the width of your handkerchief.
3. Fold again, to cover 2/3 of the width of your handkerchief, starting from the left.
4. Fold the other side toward the centre so that you have a rectangle as wide as your suit pocket.
5. Fold the entire length in half.
6. You now see a perfect rectangle.
7. Adjust the bottom by folding it neatly behind, to match the depth of your breast pocket.
Folding your handkerchiefs to store them between uses
There are two possible techniques for storing your folded handkerchiefs neatly on a daily basis: stacked or side by side. Personally, I like the side-by-side method better, as it makes it easy to see all the handkerchiefs and choose your favourite without unfolding everything else (yes, I’m naturally quite messy so layered folding doesn’t work for me at all if I aspire to keep some semblance of order in my stuff).
Folding your handkerchiefs and stacking them
The easiest way to do this is to fold the handkerchiefs in 4 and stack them. This is the technique I use when I’m making handkerchiefs and need to sort them by fabric colour before putting the labels on. The good thing about this technique is that it’s super fast, but as mentioned above—if you have several different handkerchief patterns and you’re the messy type, it might not stay organized for long…
Folding your handkerchiefs and arranging them side by side (Marie Kondo’s method!)
This technique is definitely my favourite, because 1) it allows you to arrange your handkerchiefs nicely and they look instantly, neat and tidy and 2) it’s practical, since it allows you to choose your favourite handkerchief without unfolding everything.
The principle is simple, you have to form a rectangle with the handkerchief. With a standard size handkerchief, you fold one side towards the middle, then fold the other side to form a rectangle. With a larger handkerchief, you will need to fold one of the two sides again.
Then, fold the rectangle in half or thirds lengthwise, so that the handkerchief can “stand up” on its own when placed on a surface, much like a small teepee or invitation card. This is important because if the handkerchief doesn’t stand on its own, your storage won’t hold up when you use the handkerchiefs and the number of clean handkerchiefs decreases in the dedicated space.
That’s it! I hope you found these tips useful. If you have any other questions about handkerchiefs, don’t hesitate to write to me! Yes, this article was written to answer a question from one of the members of our beautiful community… The next one could be for you!