How many times have you opened up a present, got excited, and then saw it was a pair or two of socks? Then you maybe thought to yourself “wow thanks” in a sarcastic tone. Really, socks? Socks are typically the cliché joke of gifts and nothing to get super excited over. I mean, what’s so special about socks, right? Or so you thought…
Thanks to designers now releasing a huge array of different sock designs, this market could be seen as one of the most booming retail markets of this year. In Gucci’s recent Resort 2018 collection, a pair of $1,000 crystal embellished socks stole the show. Other designers such as Gosh Rubchinksy and Thom Browne have also made socks a fashionable new item, adding different graphics and even making some that compliment certain shoes.
So, could this be a new era of style? Maybe this could be the year of the ‘sock movement’. Many buyers say that Gucci is helping make socks become the hottest new trend. Just two years ago, not a single sock was sold at Gucci, but now they are seeing sales triple with socks being added to the line. Designers are beginning to see the opportunity for the sock market as an accessory, just as they view other items such as sunglasses.
Men have always used socks to express their style more than women have in the past. With bright colors, many socks would be seen peeking out at the bottom of pants to the top dressed city slickers. This is seen especially in men who always have to wear the same type of outfit to work every day, such as a plain colored suit. Socks are a small piece to show their personality. Also, with the rise of sportswear and sneakers, socks have come to the front line of men’s style.
Many men and women also tend to wear the same shoes now, such as Nikes, Converse and Vans. With socks, it allows people to showcase a different style and add their personal look to an outfit.
The opportunity in the sock market has definitely not gone unnoticed by brands and entrepreneurs. A new sock start-up called Bombas, based in New York and started in 2014, sold over $15,000 worth of athletic socks in the first 30 days of starting. After that, the sales of their socks doubled, leading them to bring in profits of around $17 million this past year.
Many people compare the way the sock industry is going to the way the coffee industry was 30 some years ago. Back then, people would drink Maxwell and not really care much about where their coffee beans came from. Then, companies like Starbucks were introduced that seamlessly took over the coffee industry. Because of places such a Starbucks, people stopped buying their 25-cent cup of coffee from local coffee shops and started spending $3, $4, and even $5 for one cup of coffee.
Many owners of major sock companies said that when they first started the business people thought them to be crazy; especially at the price some were selling the extravagant looking socks. But now they really are something people are seeing as a luxury item, especially if they are made and given special embroidery and detail.
Looks like the sock companies are having the last laugh now. Sock sales are not shown to slow down anytime soon and celebrities have even jumped on the band wagon; such as Rob Kardashian with his Arthur George line. When we as a society see a trend we like, we hop right on the bandwagon and this seems to be the new hottest trend spreading across the world.