You may have noticed that print socks aren’t what they used to be. Think back: for a long time socks were just something you used to cover your feet. Possibly black, probably ankle-height and definitely an afterthought. Socks are now an important part of your outfit at the least, the making of an outfit at most.
Socks have become an area of diplomacy and woke-signalling – the Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau is perhaps the biggest name to use socks in this way, choosing pointedly themed ones for public occasions. Or a telling insight into a political mind: Boris Johnson was criticised recently for not washing his lucky unisex socks, emblazoned with a ruler of the Neo-Assyrian empire King Ashurbanipal, often enough.
To this, the answer is a definite: Yes. But again, make clear it is deliberate. As the sock-styling expert and Man Repeller journalist Harling Ross has noted, explicit coordination makes it clear that any unusual use of accessories is intentional. If you’re feeling a bit hesitant, see the sophisticated version of the sports socks and sandals look as touted at the most recent Agnona show. Socks were paired with sandals of the same shade or just a little different; a subtler way to dip a toe. Or, one step up: look to the styling of duck-egg-blue socks with navy-blue sandals at spring/summer 2020 Sies Marjan menswear show.
Where is a fiver best spent on socks?
“Asos has a great selection of mens socks for decent prices,” says Shaw. Calzedonia has spotty, fishnet and preppy Argyle styles galore. A supermarket pair of white cotton socks plus some dye and string will allow you to make your own take on the tie-dye sock trend. While if it’s volume over style points you’re after, you can’t beat a seven-pack of cotton-blend navy socks from M&S. EVB
The same place as cloakroom tickets, lighters and USB phone leads: thin air. There are, however, practical ways to curtail your lost-socks quota. Don’t bung them in with all your other laundry, that’s how they get irrevocably separated and, despite best intentions, post-wash pairing just doesn’t happen. Instead, do a separate women socks-and-underwear laundry load and invest in an octopus drying contraption to drip-dry them and prepare to pair with no stragglers. Simples #socksgoals.