Wear Socks. It’s THE LAW.
The full force of the state of Indiana Blackford Circuit Court has been brought to bear on the issue of socks. Confronted with sockless counsel, Judge Dean Young ordered that attorney Todd Glickman dress in “appropriate business attire… which includes socks upon his feet.”
Hat tip to Eliot Payne. Note: in the photo Thom Browne is in fact wearing tiny socks. Judge’s opinion on no-show socks is at this point unclear.
-Pete

Wear Socks. It’s THE LAW.

The full force of the state of Indiana Blackford Circuit Court has been brought to bear on the issue of socks. Confronted with sockless counsel, Judge Dean Young ordered that attorney Todd Glickman dress in “appropriate business attire… which includes socks upon his feet.”

Hat tip to Eliot Payne. Note: in the photo Thom Browne is in fact wearing tiny socks. Judge’s opinion on no-show socks is at this point unclear.

-Pete

It’s On Sale: Merz b. Schwanen Socks

I’m pretty content with my grey cotton tube socks from Hanes. They’re cheap, stay up on my leg, and go well with sneakers and jeans. A friend of mine, however, is a sharp dresser and likes to be a bit more adventurous with his socks. Even as a guy who doesn’t care for the kind of “happy,” “fun” styles that are popular these days, I often find myself admiring his choices.

So, I thought about getting some of these marled navy socks from Stevenson. Made from a heavy, thick cotton, they have an interesting look and texture. $38 for a pair is pretty expensive though, and Self Edge rarely holds sales. When they do, the discounts aren’t that deep.

Luckily, I remembered that Jesse mentioned these Merz b. Schwanen socks last Christmas (pictured above). I haven’t handled them, but they look great, so in Googling around, I found that my friend Greg is selling them through his store No Man Walks Alone. All merchandise from Merz b. Schwanen is on sale at the moment at 20% off with the checkout code Merz. That puts these at $24/ pair. Still pricey, but a bit easier to swallow than the Stevensons. I bought a couple of pairs in navy and grey. 

As Jesse mentioned, for a more affordable option, check out Wigwam

Via the Cooper-Hewitt design blog, a pair of men’s stockings from the late 18th or early 19th century. Surprisingly, they’re machine-made.

Via the Cooper-Hewitt design blog, a pair of men’s stockings from the late 18th or early 19th century. Surprisingly, they’re machine-made.

Who Cares About Baseball Stirrups?
I do, for one. So does Paul Lukas, of the amazing sports uniform blog Uni-Watch. So we enlisted the help of the brilliant Roman Mars, who runs the design and architecture podcast 99% Invisible, and told the story of the stirrup, and why it matters.
I just listened to the finished piece, and it’s a wonderful deep dive into a strange subject about which baseball fans have incredibly strong opinions. You can read, listen and learn more here.
Seriously: I can’t recommend 99% Invisible or Uni-Watch more highly. I’m honored to have worked with them on this.

Who Cares About Baseball Stirrups?

I do, for one. So does Paul Lukas, of the amazing sports uniform blog Uni-Watch. So we enlisted the help of the brilliant Roman Mars, who runs the design and architecture podcast 99% Invisible, and told the story of the stirrup, and why it matters.

I just listened to the finished piece, and it’s a wonderful deep dive into a strange subject about which baseball fans have incredibly strong opinions. You can read, listen and learn more here.

Seriously: I can’t recommend 99% Invisible or Uni-Watch more highly. I’m honored to have worked with them on this.

It’s on Sale: Bresciani Over-the-Calf Socks at Mr. Porter

Nothing gets holiday shoppers revved up like HOT SOCK DEALS. Over the calf socks from Bresciani are among the many items on sale at Mr. Porter right now. I enjoy browsing the big ticket items during Porter’s seasonal sales (act fast: only a couple Brioni shearling fishtail parkas left) but the stuff that ends up in my cart tends to be smaller bore but not regularly discounted—good socks and underwear; belts and basic sweaters. Over the calf socks are not as easy to find as you might think, and they do indeed stay up, so even with a Thom Browne trouser break you won’t be exposing wrinkled socks or your unsightly calves. No sock garters required. I have a few pairs of Bresciani socks, which are made in Bergamo in Northern Italy, and they are at least on par with makers like Pantherella. You can also find a nice selection of Bresciani socks at A Suitable Wardrobe.

-Pete

Hanes Crew Socks
As I’ve gotten older and my style has matured, I’ve found that my choices in socks have become really basic. For dress trousers and chinos, I usually wear solid navy over-the-calf socks made from either cotton or wool blends (cotton if it’s hot; wool otherwise). I really like the ones from Marcoliani and Dapper Classics, but Bresciani is also nice (though, from my experience, some of their patterned socks are a bit more delicate than other brands’). For something more affordable, you can get Pantherellas at 35-40% off using one of Sierra Trading Post’s DealFlyer coupons, or just pick up some basic Gold Toes.
Dress socks are a bit strange to wear with jeans though, so for those times, I wear simple, grey, cotton crew socks. In the past, I’ve bought mine from Uniqlo and Land’s End. I like Uniqlo’s slightly more “retro” designs, but like Jesse, have found Land’s End to hold up a bit better (Uniqlo’s are cheaper, but they tend to fuzz up in the wash).
On a whim earlier this year, I picked up some of these basic grey crew socks from Hanes. They often run 25%-off promotional specials if you buy over a certain amount, which made these socks, coupled with some much needed white Beefy Tees, cheap enough to try.
I’ve been wearing them pretty hard and consistently this past summer, and I’m really impressed with how well they’ve held up. No fuzzing, no loss in elasticity, and they stay up on my leg for the most part throughout the day. Best of all, they cost less than $2 a pair. These are nice affordable basics in the most reasonable definition of affordable. That’s much appreciated given how expensive other “affordable basics” are nowadays.

Hanes Crew Socks

As I’ve gotten older and my style has matured, I’ve found that my choices in socks have become really basic. For dress trousers and chinos, I usually wear solid navy over-the-calf socks made from either cotton or wool blends (cotton if it’s hot; wool otherwise). I really like the ones from Marcoliani and Dapper Classics, but Bresciani is also nice (though, from my experience, some of their patterned socks are a bit more delicate than other brands’). For something more affordable, you can get Pantherellas at 35-40% off using one of Sierra Trading Post’s DealFlyer coupons, or just pick up some basic Gold Toes.

Dress socks are a bit strange to wear with jeans though, so for those times, I wear simple, grey, cotton crew socks. In the past, I’ve bought mine from Uniqlo and Land’s End. I like Uniqlo’s slightly more “retro” designs, but like Jesse, have found Land’s End to hold up a bit better (Uniqlo’s are cheaper, but they tend to fuzz up in the wash).

On a whim earlier this year, I picked up some of these basic grey crew socks from Hanes. They often run 25%-off promotional specials if you buy over a certain amount, which made these socks, coupled with some much needed white Beefy Tees, cheap enough to try.

I’ve been wearing them pretty hard and consistently this past summer, and I’m really impressed with how well they’ve held up. No fuzzing, no loss in elasticity, and they stay up on my leg for the most part throughout the day. Best of all, they cost less than $2 a pair. These are nice affordable basics in the most reasonable definition of affordable. That’s much appreciated given how expensive other “affordable basics” are nowadays.

Four Socks for Summer

For much of the year, I rely on navy wool over-the-calf socks. As many readers will know, I favor over-the-calfs because they stay up on your leg, thus ensuring your bare calves won’t be exposed when you sit down. I also find navy is a slightly more interesting color than black, and can be successfully paired with almost any kind of trouser.

In the summer months, however, long wool socks can wear a bit too warm, so I turn to other options. The first are still navy over-the-calfs, but instead of wool, I’ve come to really appreciate the highly breathable cotton ones sold by Dapper Classics. They sent me a few pairs for free last year and I’m really pleased with how well they’ve held up. Like with many high-end socks, however, I’ve found that solid colors hold up much better than patterns. For whatever reason, high end patterned socks seem to fuzz up and fall apart more easily in the wash. Still, their solid navy is made with a very durable, breathable weave, and you can feel the air whiff by when you put these on and wiggle your feet.

Another popular option is no-show socks, which Jesse has written about before. They’re essentially a short cotton sock that allows you get the look of being sockless without actually having to be so. In addition to the ones Jesse named, 2(x)ist also just released a collection of no-show socks. I have no experience with them, though I’m told they have a rubber grip at the heel that helps prevent slippage. Jesse also reviewed the Mocc Socks he named in his original article, and liked them.

I tried no-show socks a couple of years ago and sadly found they just didn’t work for me. Mine had rubber grips as well, but they still kept slipping off. So I’ve turned to terry cloth insoles from Aldos, which you can slip into your shoes whenever you want to go sockless. If your feet get sweaty easily, sprinkle in a little Gold Bond powder to keep them cool and dry. 

Finally, summer being what it is, I like to wear sneakers a bit more often on the weekends. Dress socks are a bit weird with sneakers, so I pair mine with more casual cotton socks. Like Jesse, mine are from Lands’ End and Uniqlo. I’ve found the ones from Lands’ End hold up a bit better, though I like Uniqlo’s designs (mine are these in grey). Get whichever ones you like best, though I recommend staying away from the white ones. Those just look too much like athletic tube socks, which in my opinion, should be worn only when you’re exercising.  

Unsolicited Endorsement: Lands’ End Crew Socks
When I’m wearing sneakers, I prefer not to wear white socks. Sure, I’ll wear Costco Champion athletic socks for actual athletics (even I exercise sometimes), but when I’m wearing jeans, I prefer something with some color. I haven’t found a better ratio of price to quality in that department than Lands’ End.
Lands’ End crew socks are thick enough to feel right with my trainers. They’re reasonably priced ($13.30 for two pair, currently). They come in a bunch of colors (I favor burgundy, navy and red). They’re mostly cotton, with enough synthetic to help them hold their color, shape and comfort after many washes. They’re just a solid performer. I’ve got a few pairs of similar socks from Uniqlo, and the Lands’ End model puts them to shame.
So: consider the Lands’ End cotton crew sock ENDORSED.

Unsolicited Endorsement: Lands’ End Crew Socks

When I’m wearing sneakers, I prefer not to wear white socks. Sure, I’ll wear Costco Champion athletic socks for actual athletics (even I exercise sometimes), but when I’m wearing jeans, I prefer something with some color. I haven’t found a better ratio of price to quality in that department than Lands’ End.

Lands’ End crew socks are thick enough to feel right with my trainers. They’re reasonably priced ($13.30 for two pair, currently). They come in a bunch of colors (I favor burgundy, navy and red). They’re mostly cotton, with enough synthetic to help them hold their color, shape and comfort after many washes. They’re just a solid performer. I’ve got a few pairs of similar socks from Uniqlo, and the Lands’ End model puts them to shame.

So: consider the Lands’ End cotton crew sock ENDORSED.

…You don’t need recursive partitioning if you can find a distribution key (hash key) that provides enough buckets that each bucket is small enough to be processed very quickly. Unfortunately, I don’t think socks have such a property…

Champagne Taste on a Beer Budget: A Black Tie Guide
This portion of our Black Tie Guide dabbles in some luxurious indulgences that some would consider optional. You might not necessarily need them immediately, but consider them things to upgrade as you build your tuxedo ensemble.
Part 5: Hosiery, Sock Garters & Braces
Black tie might be the only time wearing black socks can be considered acceptable. Formal hose should be over-the-calf, as mid-calf socks tend to slouch and expose your bare skin, which looks bad. 
In terms of material, the preference is for silk, which has a sense of refinement and sheen that compliments the silk piping of the trouser and shine of the shoes. 
Socks made of 100% silk do have trouble staying up on their own and can require the use of sock garters. If you’d rather dispense with having to wear those, then you’ll probably opt for the also-cheaper silk socks blended with nylon, which are more common to find.
The cheapest silk socks I’ve found come from Brooks Brothers, for around $40. You can also get pairs from Kabbaz-Kelly & Sons made by Marcoliani and Bresciani, who also have pure 100% silk hose. A Suitable Wardrobe’s Store also has pure silk hose for $55. 
If you need sock garters, then you can either search eBay U.K. or go with Brooks Brothers or Cable Car Clothiers, which has them for $38 and $45, respectively.
In regards to braces (commonly called “suspenders”), these are a great way to keep your trousers up and any pair of pants can have buttons added to the waistband to attach the braces. Remember: proper braces fasten using buttons, not alligator-clips.
Braces should be kept simple and discrete, avoiding the temptation of being flashy with bright colors or patterns (you shouldn’t be removing your jacket anyway). Go for solid black or white. I prefer white as it blends together better with the white shirt, but some might like the contrast of black. 
Braces should also be sized properly so the metal adjusters are on the bottom toward the waist, not high on the chest. 
As for where to buy, braces made by Albert Thurston come highly regarded and they actually seem to be very competitively priced at $75 at A Suitable Wardrobe’s Store in ivory barathea and both black and white moiré. 
The one thing I want to point out about the items mentioned in this part is that they’re probably not necessary for the most basic of tuxedo ensembles. If you pants are sized correctly to your waist, you can forgo braces. Cheaper socks can be found by going with cotton or wool options from the same high-end makers. For instance, Howard Yount carries several black over-the-calf options from their own private-label and from Marcoliani. 
-Kiyoshi

Champagne Taste on a Beer Budget: A Black Tie Guide

This portion of our Black Tie Guide dabbles in some luxurious indulgences that some would consider optional. You might not necessarily need them immediately, but consider them things to upgrade as you build your tuxedo ensemble.

Part 5: Hosiery, Sock Garters & Braces

Black tie might be the only time wearing black socks can be considered acceptable. Formal hose should be over-the-calf, as mid-calf socks tend to slouch and expose your bare skin, which looks bad. 

In terms of material, the preference is for silk, which has a sense of refinement and sheen that compliments the silk piping of the trouser and shine of the shoes. 

Socks made of 100% silk do have trouble staying up on their own and can require the use of sock garters. If you’d rather dispense with having to wear those, then you’ll probably opt for the also-cheaper silk socks blended with nylon, which are more common to find.

The cheapest silk socks I’ve found come from Brooks Brothers, for around $40. You can also get pairs from Kabbaz-Kelly & Sons made by Marcoliani and Bresciani, who also have pure 100% silk hose. A Suitable Wardrobe’s Store also has pure silk hose for $55. 

If you need sock garters, then you can either search eBay U.K. or go with Brooks Brothers or Cable Car Clothiers, which has them for $38 and $45, respectively.

In regards to braces (commonly called “suspenders”), these are a great way to keep your trousers up and any pair of pants can have buttons added to the waistband to attach the braces. Remember: proper braces fasten using buttons, not alligator-clips.

Braces should be kept simple and discrete, avoiding the temptation of being flashy with bright colors or patterns (you shouldn’t be removing your jacket anyway). Go for solid black or white. I prefer white as it blends together better with the white shirt, but some might like the contrast of black. 

Braces should also be sized properly so the metal adjusters are on the bottom toward the waist, not high on the chest. 

As for where to buy, braces made by Albert Thurston come highly regarded and they actually seem to be very competitively priced at $75 at A Suitable Wardrobe’s Store in ivory barathea and both black and white moiré. 

The one thing I want to point out about the items mentioned in this part is that they’re probably not necessary for the most basic of tuxedo ensembles. If you pants are sized correctly to your waist, you can forgo braces. Cheaper socks can be found by going with cotton or wool options from the same high-end makers. For instance, Howard Yount carries several black over-the-calf options from their own private-label and from Marcoliani. 

-Kiyoshi