Autumn and winter clothes are naturally heavier and darker than what you’d wear in summer or spring—which can be a bit of a drag as the days get shorter. Socks might sound like a silly solution, but they make a difference: they’re a small, inexpensive, easy way of brightening things up.
Stylist, Freddie Kemp
Bear in mind that you can get away with a lot here for obvious reasons: socks only show when you’re sitting down, and even then it’s only a few inches of colour.
If you’re wearing an otherwise-neutral outfit, don’t be scared to go several shades brighter than you normally would.
If a bright colour in itself feels over the top, a pattern can be just as interesting (if a bit more subtle).
Stripes, spots and herringbone are easy options that don't draw too much attention. Choose a neutral colour to save your socks from stealing the show.
Especially if you're a conservative dresser, bright socks show you're attentive to details, and you've made an effort.
If you’re wearing neutral clothes that fit you well, and then you sit down and show an interesting sock, it can be impressive—it shows a bit of confidence.
"While bolder socks are a good idea in principle, you don’t want to wander into a conservative meeting and feel uncomfortable," Freddie says.
"When dressing very formally, or for something like a job interview, it’s safest to stick to a dark colour like navy or black."
Like the idea of lightening up, but not quite ready to go for something really out there? The trick is to pick a colour you’re used to wearing, and then go a few tones brighter. If you’re a navy fan, for instance, try bright blue socks.
Socks rarely stay up? It's probably because of the way you're storing them.
If you usually stretch one sock around the other to make a little bundle, you're also stretching out the ribbing or elastic that holds socks up. Instead, place one on top of the other and roll them from the toe up.
Freddie has an easy tip for mixing colours: keep them either light or dark. “If you’re wearing dark shades, pick something like a burgundy or deep green.
"If you’re wearing something like stone or light grey chinos, a lighter pastel shade will work better. This way the colours will never clash.”
There’s no need to put your socks centre stage. You can turn up your trousers if you’re dressed casually, but remember your cuffs will naturally rise a bit when you sit down or walk around, so there may be no need.
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