By Paul Evans
While women get to break out the sundresses and strappy sandals for summer fashion, men have a little more difficulty dressing in the hottest season. Suits can be stifling and sweat is imminent. Some guys try and beat the heat with questionable choices (we’re looking at you, flip-flop offenders) but fashionable men take the season in stride, picking the right shoes to wear with a summer wardrobe and making only the slightest adjustments for comfort. One of those adjustments we’ve seen grow in popularity recently is the omission of socks.
This trend is really nothing new; Italian men have been dashing about town in summer loafers sans socks for decades. It’s an easy look with a get-up-and-go vibe many men love to exude. Of course, as Simon Chilvers over at The Guardian points out, going sockless has its drawbacks… namely the odor situation. But as celebrity after celebrity validates the trend, we find ourselves considering the possibilities and limitations of going sockless.
In the adventurous world of high fashion, going sockless is no big deal. However, avant garde stylists like Gucci’s Creative Director Alessandro Michele are also sending models down the runway with the ever dreaded socks-with-sandals look. These mixed messages can get confusing for your everyday guy; who decided to come in and switch up the rules, anyways?
What it really comes down to is personal experimentation. Do you like the look of a suit and a pair of sharp Italian leather shoes sans socks when you see it being pulled off by celebrities on the red carpet? Try it out at a casual occasion and see how it feels. With celebrities like Jay Z leaving their socks in the drawer for formal occasions like the Grammys, you’re safe trying out the trend for Friday evening drinks with the guys.
If you like the look but simply cannot get over the smell issue, invisible socks are available almost everywhere nowadays. The cool part about not-socks is they actually have the potential to give a little more variation on the look depending on the style you get. Some sit just below the ankle, visible but still granting a bare ankle. Showing just a hint of black sock with your shoes can balance out an abundance of visible leg when you’re wearing shorts. Other no-show socks are so low only you will know you’re wearing them. Well, you and the very grateful lady who’s around at the end of the day when you finally take your shoes off.
If you see going sockless as just another trend you’re happy to avoid, you’re not alone. Tastemakers like Dior’s Raf Simons are right there with you in the Socks-Forever-and-Always club. Just be sure to keep the essentials in mind: white athletic socks only belong in the gym, keep proportion in mind when wearing shorts, and most importantly have fun with the accessory. It is only fashion, after all.
Whether you choose to go with the sockless trend or would rather not, a great pair of Italian leather shoes is never the wrong choice. See our entire selection of handcrafted shoes and boots here.