The Shoe Snob Blog

April 10, 2017

Written by , Posted in News

Contrasting Socks – Adding Flare to Your Outfit

J.FitzPatrick Fauntleroy
There is an art to wearing the right socks for ones outfit. And within that art are several schools of thought on how to go about perfecting that art. For this post I thought that we could take a look at those 3 ideas and go over the pro’s and con’s of each and ultimately give one the thumbs up (as I am sure from the title we all know which one it will be!).

20170214_075850

 



 

1. Matching/Complementing Your Trouser and/or Shoes

This is probably the most common train of thought and is regarded as the most professional and conservative of the three rules. This is also the easiest as it literally takes zero effort to grab a pair of socks that either complements or matches one of either forms of attire. This train of thought is good for those that in typcially in the professional sector and have a dress code for work. I often find myself falling into this category more often than not, especially as I am a zombie in the mornings. If I got myself ready for the day the night before, I would probably fall into the next category but unfortunately I am too lazy to make the effort!

Pro’s of this rule: 1. It’s easy – 2. It goes unnoticed – 3. It’s prossional and 4. It is elegant

Con’s of this rule: 1. It can be boring – 2. It doesn’t take much imagination (but there are no real faults with following this rule)

Egyptian Cotton and Merino Wool Socks found at www.theshoesnob.com

J.FitzPatrick Hawthorne model

J.FitzPatrick Hawthorne model

 



 

Photo Courtesy of @adam.bern on Instagram

Photo Courtesy of @adam.bern on Instagram

 



 

Carmina shoes courtesy of @derekpolson on Instagram

Carmina shoes courtesy of @derekpolson on Instagram

2. Elegantly Contrasting Your Shoes/Trousers

This is the rule that is by far the hardest but also offers the greatest rewards if pulled off successfully. Doing this not only entails knowing what looks good and doesn’t but also knowing what colors complement each other. The lighting in my flat is quite dark so sometimes I leave wearing all blue, knowing that they are all different shades but not being able to tell and leaving my house looking silly because 7 shades of blue don’t go well together. If I simply took out the blue sock and added another complementing color, it at least would have salvaged some of my laziness of going for a monotone look that doesn’t go!

Simon Crompton, of Permanent Style, wrote a short and sweet article about this and he was dead on.

The beauty of a contrasting sock is that when done right it really harmonizes an outfit like the navy socks paired with the sand chinos and exquisite mid brown Bestetti shoes or the super cool pintstripe socks paired with the beige trousers and burgundy shoes. Both socks are constrasting but really tie together the trouser and shoe to the point that it looks as if they were all made for each other. And while being conversative and matching your sock to your trouser is an elegant look, nothing is more stylish than getting this rule right!

Pro’s of this rule: 1. If done right, your outfit is immensely more stylish. – 2. A good contrast ties your outfit together – 3. People will for sure compliment you

Con’s of this rule: 1. If not done right, it can go terribly wrong (see rule three) – 2. Unharmonizing colors can ruin your whole outfit

Egyptian Cotton and Merino Wool Socks found at www.theshoesnob.com

Courtesy of Permanent Style

Courtesy of Permanent Style

 

J.FitzPatrick Wallingford, courtesy of @derekpolson of IG

J.FitzPatrick Wallingford, courtesy of @derekpolson of IG

 



 

Courtesy of Permanent Style

Courtesy of Permanent Style

Riccardo Bestetti shoes courtesy of @niclas_andersson of IG

Riccardo Bestetti shoes courtesy of @niclas_andersson of IG

Courtesy of Parisian Gentleman

Courtesy of Parisian Gentleman

3. Going Bold (Often Beyond Belief)

Then you have the guys that just want their socks to scream out at everyone, saying ‘hey, look at me and how bright/lairy I am!’ And this is the rule that you really want to stay away from unless you just like being the center of attention, and not in a good way. There is a fine line between rule 2 and rule 3 but it is one that you want to be well aware of. Going for a bright color can be okay, but make sure that it is complementing to the rest of your outfit as if it contrasts too much (think yellow socks and black shoes), it just doesn’t look right. Going bold is not always a bad thing, but doing it right is the trick.

More often than not, the lairy combinations are done with patterned socks and that is often why it goes downhill. It’s not that patterned socks are bad, but they can easily go overboard, especially when you contrast it again a patterned suit or multi colored shoe.

Pro’s of this rule: 1. You could be considered a Dandy if you fancy that – 2. If you really pull it off, people will appreciate your style sense

Con’s of this rule: 1. When going overboard it just looks plain bad – 2. It’s easier to go wrong then it is to do it right

Both photos courtesy of Fashion Beans

Both photos courtesy of Fashion Beans

socks19 - Fashion Beans

  • Andie Nicolas

    Found it good to match the colour of your socks with the colour of your shirt so it looks like you are wearing a jump suit; but the colours must be the same! Sometimes match the socks with the tie (plain, no patterns please!) but again colours must be the same.

  • SFguy

    Kudos to the person who polished those Wallingfords.

    Re: the top photo — Sometimes I wonder whether I’m the only guy bothered by the contrasting sock heel that peeks out above the back of the shoe.