This needs to be said upfront: all pocket squares were created equal. All of them. They’re just little pieces of cloth stuffed in an otherwise useless front pocket like glorified Kleenex. It doesn’t matter much what eccentric pattern (flowers! camo! pink camo!) you have hanging out of there, or where that little patch of Fair Trade fabric is sourced, or how well it’s pressed or whether it’s an exact two-shades-darker match for your bespoke denim shirt. Almost anything will do — hell, Bill Murray stuffs Red Vines in his front pocket and looks flyer than damn near anyone.
So, how’d a pocket square startup get on the GP100? Simple: by really, honestly giving a shit. They have a mission. A purpose. A cause. And it’s just so refreshing for an Internet-age company to have a decent, unpretentious, completely admirable motive — in this case, to revive the long-dead practice of chivalry.
The company, Quixotic, was founded earlier this year by a few idealistic gentlemen from Dallas. The mission statement: “It is the presence of noble action, not the absence of poor conduct, that defines a gentleman.”
Which is why the business is named after Don Quixote. Which nobody has read, but here’s the gist if you’re too lazy to look it up on Wikipedia: a 17th-century Spaniard decides to single-handedly (with the help of a lovably bumbling sidekick) revive chivalry by riding around the countryside — and into a bunch of unassuming windmills — before losing the girl, losing his faith, losing his sanity and quietly dying. Totally bleak — but the point is the man had some principles.
And much like Cervantes’ valiant hero, the boys at Quixotic stand by their code. They actively encourage you to use your pocket square in the service of gentlemanly valor, whether that means offering it up to dry some sweat, dusting a seat or damping a runny nose. If you should lose your pocket square in such an act, or somehow damage it in the process, they’ll give you a new one, completely free of charge, so long as you’re willing to share your noble story with the world.
The product only exists, in short, to inspire men to do nice things for others. It’s corporate social responsibility taken to a whole new, remarkably badass level.
Perhaps even more valiant, Quixotic donates 10 percent of each sale to Dallas-based organizations that aim to fight domestic violence and/or aid its victims.
As for the pocket squares themselves — those pieces of cloth you’re actually buying for $35 a pop — well, they’re actually pretty nice. There are six styles, each named after a day of the week, and each is suitably, handsomely utilitarian: cotton chambray or linen in a range of classic and unassuming colors. All in all, a much more practical solution than Red Vines.
Size: 13 x 13 inches
Material: linen blend or cotton chambray