The cyclical nature of fashion is so transparent. The evolving way in which socks have been paired with clothing is one such example of this. Just a few years ago, I would never have believed that the value of socks would skyrocket to another level in the fashion realm; yet, somehow, they have. Note: All Chanel and Saint Laurent 2014 Pre-Spring Ready to Wear collection photos are courtesy of Style.com
I never considered socks a fashion must-have until fairly recently. They were just what I wore to keep my feet warm. I still hate to wear them because they make my feet hot and, at times, itchy. I am usually amongst the first to go without them as soon as spring arrives and amongst the last individuals to begin wearing them as mid-autumn arrives in the northern hemisphere. I think of them so differently now as a result of how prominently they are featured on the feet of street-style stars and runway models. Dial it back with me if you would for just a few moments so that you may understand my prior feelings about socks.
I paired, just like many other girls during the early stages of my school years, socks with skirts and shirts that were within school uniform regulations; however, as I entered public high school it was not hip to pair them with skirts mainly because this look was associated with nerds and geeks in public high school. Wearing non-trendy attire during my school days would have placed me firmly into weirdo category. Avoiding a fashion faux-pas was hard enough in high school without intentionally going out of my way to look different.
Around the same time, my friends and I compared notes about why so many men of the senior citizen persuasion wore socks with sandals or dress oxfords when they wore shorts in the spring and summer. We shared quite a bit of laughter upon the sighting of this type of outfit on our own grandpas. The strange thing is that this foible seemed to be solely attributable to men around the age of 60 or above. Women in the same age demographic, for some reason, seemed to be immune to the socks and sandals pairing. It never occurred to me that a couple of decades later men in the senior years of their life would deserve props for being on the forefront of fashion for pairing socks with their summer casual attire. Men in the senior citizen demographic sort of had it right back then. Sort of, only because it is still considered taboo for men to wear socks with sandals. I must say though that there is definite gender discrimination associated with this today. Why is it acceptable for women to wear socks with sandals but not men? In general, it is still considered a fashion faux-pas for men.
|No, no, a resounding no to this look men!|
|This is a fashion don't men. Please don't do this.|
Bobby Soxers, celebrity fans and fashion-mad young women, were at the forefront of this current trend, as well. These young women really set the bar high when they paired their socks with saddle shoes or loafers and poodle skirts. Does it get anymore preppy glam than that? Bobby Soxers really knew how to party down as they danced away in their ankle socks and saddle shoes. Talk about putting some pep in your sock-covered steps.
I also became more aware of the fashion star quality of socks when I noticed how darling knee-high socks look when paired with tall boots. Many of you have created some superb looks by featuring socks so prominently with your tall boots. In fact the pairing is like peanut butter and jelly this season. They just naturally go together.
Socks, dare I say, have become quite a glamorous accoutrement to skirts and dresses. I only wonder how long socks will ride the popularity wave. What do you think? Are we destined to see them perpetually paired with skirts and dresses throughout 2014 or beyond?
My latest Keaton Row lookbooks are available to browse, if you wish, at http://www.keatonrow.com/stylist/sharonpate. The price of the merchandise is the same as if purchased directly from the retailer and shipping is free.
Who What Wear, 10 Surprisingly Easy Ways to Wear Socks with Shoes