The renaissance of socks: Hand-knitted by the Queen

Gucci socks at 190 euro, Alexander McQueen socks for 245 euro – the sock inflation brought us socks for the 1%. Or actually, they're accessoires.

Red high heels and blue high heel sandals

Street Style at the Paris Fashion Week Foto: manrepeller.com

I’ve long been a proponent of getting sockaphobics to toe the line of the higher powers that be: Miuccia Prada, Marc Jacobs, and Alessandro Michele have long shown us the way of how a good pair of socks can make a blasé outfit look positively quirky. Leandra Medine (the now multi-millionaire fashion blogger Man Repeller) is queen of this look: with loafers and socks pulled up high, like she’s channeling her Dad in a mini-skirt.

I can remember going into the Prada store in New York one day in 2008, after the Crash, and noticing that the only thing I could actually afford was a pair of 30 dollar socks. At the time, I balked.

Today, I’m hot for anything Gucci. Anything! But the Gucci socks for 190 euro is where I stop toeing the line and where I begin to draw the line. Socks for the 1%? Not in good conscious, no thanks. You’ll find me in Footlocker stocking up on crisp new tighty whities. Call it the Tennis Sock Rebellion, if you will. Unfortunately, garment workers were probably exploited in making a 3-pack for 7 euro? What to do? Are socks Made in Italy really the only choice we have?

The froufrou numbers at Alexander McQueen are hand-knitted by the Queen of England herself. At 245 euro, a bargain considering new post-Brexit export duties.

taz.couture: das heißt regelmäßig nachdenken über Mode und Kleider als Zeichen der Wünsche und Ängste unserer Zeit, als Indikator kulturellen und politischen Wandels, kurz: als intellektuelle Herausforderung.

Seriously, though. I do understand that this is all an indicator of the worth of things. I once met a group of grandmas on a train, and I watched them knit. How long does it take you to do a sock? Online forums confirmed what they told me. They weren’t exaggerating the heroic act. It takes give or take 6 to 20 hours per hand-knitted sock vs the 67 dollar factory version here.

Note the cleverness of these socks. They’ve stitched “Sexual Fantasies“ on the bottom where no one but you and your loved ones can see them. They’re listed as “imported“ so we don’t know where they came from. Vetements socks, however, by comparison to Prada, some ten years later, seem to be a bargain, it turns out. Here’s a pair of Prada socks that sell for 355 dollars. (Should have grabbed those ones for 30 bucks when I could. Missed my chance.)

The Little William Gucci socks, for 350 euro, by the way, don’t qualify as socks. These are veritable accessoires. Easy to copy and readily available at a Zara near you, I predict, within the month.

Made in Spain, or at least we hope.

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