Whether you call it a coin pocket, change pocket, watch pocket, or 5th pocket, that extra pocket frequently found on men’s pants is a bit of an anachronism. Not many people carry a pocket watch anymore. But the pocket itself hangs on.
Of course I am sure that there are readers out there who will say “My father/grandfather/uncle used to carry his Case Peanut in his 5th pocket.” Perhaps you do as well. It isn’t exactly an outside-the-box application. Your Grandfather also did not have to deal with a smartphone in his pocket back in the day, and 5th pocket carry is a great way to keep your knife and phone separate, thus avoiding scratching the latter.
That said, the term “5th Pocket Knife” is relatively new. A search of BladeForums.com has discussions of carrying a knife in the 5th pocket going back many years, it has only been in the past couple of years that you will see the term in quotes and as the subject of a thread. Likewise, a search on YouTube returns several dozen results, all but one in the past two years. More than half come from the past six months, with titles like “Best 5th Pocket Knife?” or “Top 10 Knives for 5th Pocket Carry” becoming commonplace.
On a somewhat parallel track to the “5th pocket” knives are knives designed to be carried by women. According to KNIFE Magazine Graphic Artist Noelle Thomas, “the pockets on women’s jeans are too small for any kind of normal knife, if you’re lucky to have pockets at all. Anything you want to carry regularly has to be small and flat or it will fall out, get in the way, or simply not fit.”
The following list is not ranked in any way. Our purpose is to showcase a variety of designers’ take on the genera, which includes locking and non-locking, clipped and non-clipped, and knives that look like have the same proportions as a larger knife, just in a smaller package to those whose design is completely unique.
This article appears in the October 2021 issue of KNIFE Magazine. Click the blue button below to read the whole thing.,