coffee talk: sock etiquette

Here’s the deal: I don’t know sock etiquette.

So help a sister out: What socks do you wear when?

Break it down nice and simple for me please.


80 Responses to “coffee talk: sock etiquette”
  1. Becca says:

    there’s a sock etiquette?!

  2. Amy Ellison says:

    :) hi there. here’s how I do it:

    -Never wear socks that are darker than my shoes.
    -only wear white socks with sneakers.
    -Try to match my socks to my pants. (or black socks for black shoes. I dont like an identical matched brown sock to brown shoes, so i go for lighter shade of brown… or again.. matching my pants…)
    -Wear socks as infrequently as possible. (I just dont like wearing them!)

    BUT if you have some crazy, fun, loud socks – you can pretty much wear those whenever, however you please.

  3. Debra says:

    Sock etiquette … that makes me laugh! I wear white socks all the time. My husband has to tell me to change to the appropriate color when we are going to church. Sock etiquette … hee-hee! :)

    Maybe I’ll follow Amy’s advice!

  4. Amy is right.

    White or funky socks are only for casual. I would expand white socks to wear with shoes like merrels, or some crocs (not your pretty crocs though…i think those are no sock shoes) Like I have one pair that are orange, blue, green and brown stripes that I only wear if my attire is casual or under high boots – so it’s like “ha ha, i’m wearing funky socks and you dont know”. (kind of like this:

    black with black, brown or tan with brown

    do you have a specific question?

  5. Cameron says:

    Any color any time. Funky is great. Make them wonder or even just smile.

  6. Heidi

    Put them on before your pants!!

    Any color unless you live in s. Cali..

    then NO socks they clash with flipflops.

  7. Megan says:

    darn. epic fail on my part. i totally wear white socks with black pants. cause no one sees them….


  8. @ngie

    I have a one-hole-per-sock rule.

    (you’ll get that in a moment…)

    Aside from that I am as lost as you. Hi. I’m Angie. And I am a fashion ignoramus.

    The support group you have going here in your comment boxes has been extremely helpful, I must say.

  9. Andrew Ronzino

    Holes in all socks all the time. No matter where you are or what you’re doing, or what kind of sock you have. There must be holes in them.

  10. mandie says:

    I wish I could help you out here Alece…but sorry, I have no freakin’ idea.
    I hate socks (except my wool ones that keep my feet warm in winter). So the way I deal with them…I have a draw full of socks…all white…all the same brand…and they aren’t paired up at all.
    It actually seems to work okay.

    P.S. Some slightly exciting news for you: :)

  11. hannahruthie says:

    I don’t know if this is considered a rule, but I always take off my socks if the ground in softer than the socks I’m wearing. It just makes sense to give your feet the max amount of comfort. That goes with summer and bare feet in the grass too…

    Oh and here’s a little Pacific Northwest sock advice. Watch the video.

  12. comfy, crazy, white, christmas/valentines/easter socks (of which i have all and wear them throughout the year.) i like socks.. maybe because i wear converse if im not in flip flops. i have sported the toe socks with flip flops but only on cold days when i was in a hury and just couldnt stand to wear shoes that day. :)
    basically i have no sock etiquette. nor did i know there was one. i guess i will be more careful for the sake of all the “fashionados” out there. hehe

    oh and i think the link to my new site should come through now. im not sure what was going wrong last night. i left three comments but only one of them showed up. : /…. oh and i really dont like my new scary face on here? is there anyway to change it? haha

  13. ok, here is the Israeli take on socks:

    Anyone who wears socks with sandals (regardless of what type of socks they are) is either European or American. They laugh their heads off… (I happen to agree…not good)

    But, for me, in the house its fine. I always wear socks with sandals around the house :) I’m all about the warmth factor. If its freezing out, I will wear my brothers soccer socks under my jeans ALL the time!!! That way my entire leg and knee remains nice and toastie.

    With tennis shoes I usually wear little white ankle socks.

    I think in America the rule now is: the wierder and crazier the sock is, the cooler you are. I don’t know, but I always see people there with crazy socks and they are so proud of them :)

  14. roo says:

    …wait. Israeli? I need to be around the g&g more often. (I think I just looked over my shoulder, as I sit in a coffee shop in Jerusalem.)
    Uhm, I’d concur with Amy. Though, I wear white socks more often than I should – ’cause I’m a college kid and can get away with it since I wear tekkies so often!

  15. Brandy says:

    this is funny. heehee

    WHITE. always. and I prefer ankle socks to any other.

    and really, if I’m gonna keep it real here, I never wear socks unless I absolutely have to. Even in negative temps. HATE socks.

  16. Brandy says:

    YOU’VE NEVER WORN HIGH BOOTS?!?!?! Guuuurrrrrl!!!!

    I see I am in the MINORITY when it comes to socks. hahaha! I do not even OWN a pair of colored socks. haha! I think it is because I seriously never wear them, and I am totally the “high heel/high boot” girl all the time. In the summer is high heeled sandal type shoes, or flip flops. In the winter it’s snow boots or high heeled boots, both of which I don’t wear socks with. My pants are all really long too so that they just barely stop above the floor. Thank you “what not to wear” for that leg lengthening tip! ;-)

  17. Brandy says:

    and you don’t do bare feet in the grass?!




  18. roo says:

    I DID say tekkies! Back overseas, I’ve reverted to all my SA slang. I miss it so much.
    …Tel Aviv, eh? I’ll be going back to the airport in a couple months! ;-)

  19. Anna says:

    socks? you mean you actually wear socks?

    I am just teasing! I am one of those who prefers white socks, though I have been venturing out and buying colorful socks. I wear them with anything… ??? I certainly do not know sock etiquette at all. My friend says to my Dh and I this summer, “You mean you let him wear tall socks with tennis shoes and shorts?” And I said, “What else is he supposed to wear?” According to her, you wear those ankle socks. I do not wear ankle socks at all cause I hate the way they slide down my foot in my shoe and I have to go digging for them! HAHAHA!!!

  20. I hate socks. it kind a goes with the whole hating clothes thing…if i were to wear socks it would have to he ankle socks and white. I only own those kinds of socks.

    My naked feet love streaking in the grass!!

  21. gitz says:

    WOW… socks cause a big discussion apparently :)

    1. Get thee some high boots, woman. Seriously… they are sass personified. If you need a little sass, just wear the boot. You’ll be dancing on a bar for real before you know it. ;)

    2. NO WHITE SOCKS WITH DARK SHOES. Can’t stress this enough.

    3. Socks with crocs = yes. Socks with sandals = no. Still trying to explain that one to my dad.

  22. know what i hate! is when people wear socks with sandles!

  23. ummm…. really! kick that to the garbage pail!

  24. hannahelisehellums says:

    i made a face! gravitar is cool. :)

  25. hannahelisehellums says:

    noooooo. it didnt work! pooop!

  26. hannahelisehellums says:

    yay, it changed some how between now and then. so this is really random but i just thought it would make you laugh.
    everytime i see the title “coffee talk” here on your site, i have to say “Coffee” out loud in a new yorker accent. in my head i sound like you but im sure others would argue my southern drawl just wont let me win that one. :)

  27. hannahelisehellums says:


  28. annie says:

    Black socks when I work.

    Other stuff other times.

    (My sock drawer could use some help.)

  29. I never wear socks with sandals. If other people do it, that’s cool. I just don’t because my feet get confused.

  30. Brandy says:

    “my feet get confused” made me laugh. hahaha!

  31. alece says:

    ha! i love it.

  32. I came back to tell you I don’t quite understand the question.
    And I didn’t wear socks to Shelly’s wedding. And I had toe cleavage. And you’d be proud.

    And I don’t think socks work if you’re in the mood to show a little toe cleavage.

  33. i think i kinda read all of the responses.

    i only wear socks with running shoes.
    or sneakers.

    and then i wear trouser socks with high boots.

    so basically, if i wear socks, you’ll never see them. they are always hidden by boots or low ones with athletic shoes.

    i’m a sneaky sock wearer, apparently.

    (sorry i’m late to the party)

  34. alece says:

    mandy — i am so glad you didn’t wear socks in shelly’s wedding. and way to rock the cleavage, riend!

    sarah — you sneaky sock wearer you! and you ARE the party, what are you talkin’ about?!

  35. I’ve been gone for a while, and I come back to find a bajillion comments on your post about SOCKS! So funny!

    I enjoy socks a lot – I don’t like wearing shoes (inside), but don’t like my toes showing in public. So socks it is. Preferably athletic ankle socks, often stolen from my husband’s dresser.

    For work and whatnot, though, I wear trouser socks – brown or black – BORING! I like cute or crazy socks, but I’ve read that if your socks are the most interesting thing about your outfit, then you have a problem.

  36. tam

    i had a friend once who flat out refused to let anyone in her house if they kept their shoes on. she had a sign on her front door that said…

    “stocking feet please”

    i assumed she’d let me slide beings we were pretty good friends and i know how to wipe my feet really, really good. then one day in her house she slightly reprimanded me for having my shoes on.

    well…i never took off my shoes cuz i always had holes in my socks. brent and i were newly married and we put our money toward more important things like, ramen noodles and toilet paper. but i was ashamed of my socks. so, i told her my reasoning and she bought me socks so i could still come over.

    to this day…i still dont know if i should be offended by that.

    anyhoo… i pretty much only wear socks at night.

  37. Ellie says:

    I’m too late – but what is with all of you and white socks?! Get exciting. Go find colored, print (just NOT those little diamonds!), striped, ones with monkeys on them, whatever! Then sort of match the color of your shirt with your socks while wearing jeans. If you have to take off your shoes when you go to people’s houses, you my as well have cute socks on!

    Still stick with black (or black print) with black pants and brown with brown, but beyond that, get creative!

    Down with white socks! They re only good for ankle socks with tennis shoes in the summer.

  38. alece says:

    your only rule is to put them on before your pants?! i love it!

    i think one of my favorite things about summer is all the sockless days.

  39. alece says:

    i love that you linked to my pink underwear post. i almost wrote a follow-up one the other day. maybe i still will.


    specific question… okay: how about sock length? apparently this is important…

  40. alece says:

    your hubs keeps you in line with sock fashion?! that is awesome!

  41. Christen says:

    Debra- I don’t know WHO you are, but somehow our husbands need to meet so my husband can hear from another man what socks to wear when. I’m so not into the bulky white athlectic socks w/ black dress pants and black dress shoes. Somehow, though, here in SA that doesn’t not seem to be a fashion faux pas… it is in this house, though, I just can’t get my man to understand it. Help!

  42. alece says:

    totally helpful! thank you!

  43. alece says:

    come back later! you might just learn some things along with me!

  44. Debra says:

    Yes, he is rather the fashionado (is that how you spell it?) Kind of cracks me up … some things he is quirky about and socks are one of them. He is, however, having to loosen up as oldest daughter’s style is sort of “Punky Brewster” and he must love on her regardless in order for her earthly father to mirror her Heavenly Father’s opinion of her … He who looks on the inside not the outside. Good stuff!

  45. Debra says:

    Oh, and hey, isn’t nice that panty hose seem to be a, generally speaking, thing of the past?

  46. alece says:

    awwww… punky brewster!

    and absolutely on the stockings!

  47. I’m glad you liked that. ;) I almost linked it to Amy’s post…. If she hadn’t been in the spirit of “happiness under where” today might not have been so bad! ha!

    ok…sock legnth: my rule: unless i’m working out the socks have to be long enough to come a good way up my calf so that you can’t see my leg when i sit. or if i’m wearing high boots they have to come up past the top of the boot.

  48. alece says:

    so you only wear the ankle socks (is that even the right term???) when you

  49. alece says:

    you had me until you mentioned bare feet in the grass. heebie jeebies.

    the sandals & socks thing also happens on mission trips. or at least it did in the 90s!

  50. alece says:

    white socks only, eh?

    so glad to hear you’re spending your summer at thrive! that’s awesome!

  51. alece says:

    with blue sweats, right?

  52. alece says:

    oh good! i’m glad you’re learning along with me.

    and seriously, i have no idea when it comes to fashion or style. i buy things based on two factors: is it comfortable? does it match 75% of my wardrobe?

    i go for comfort and practical. yeah. i’m that missionary.

  53. alece says:

    your new site looks great. i’m loving your pictures!

    you have easter socks?!

    (you can build yourself a gravatar with a custom picture if you want:

  54. alece says:

    i’m such a wuss when it comes to cold. i recently got sneakers and a few pairs of little ankle socks… and, well, am i the only one who hates having cold ankles?! sheesh.

    mo, meet my friend roo (below) now living in J-lem!

  55. alece says:

    roo, meet my friend mo living in tel aviv!

    [and you just said "tekkies"!!]

  56. alece says:

    in SA, men love wearing white socks with black pants and black shoes.

  57. No, you’re not the only one who hates cold ankles….but I like to use them in the summer :)

  58. alece says:

    you live in ND, friend. how can you not wear socks!?!?!

  59. alece says:

    seriously? no socks with boots? i think that would make my feet feel gross.

    and i am so struggling to find a perfect pair of jeans. i’m apparently and in-between height so nothing fits right length-wise. grrr.

  60. alece says:

    i don’t do bare feet hardly anywhere.


  61. alece says:

    you should start reading each other’s blogs and then maybe hook up when you’re in the TA airport… ???!!!

    and i love that you’re using your SA slang.

  62. alece says:

    i concur! don’t want to dig for socks!

  63. alece says:

    “streaking in the grass” made me laugh hard, friend. [but you already knew that!]

    yeah. no socks goes with nekkedness. because the only thing worse than naked is naked with socks.

  64. alece says:

    who knew socks could cause such a stir!

    1. i don’t think i have the personality for boots. it’d be fake sass. and that’s just annoying. i often wish i was more sassafrass than i am. [shrugs shoulders.]

    2. i thankfully knew this rule. phew. [wipes forehead.]

    3. yeah. i’m a no socks-n-sandals gal. except way back when I was a teenager, it was considered high-class mission trip gear. i’ve got some incriminating photos of myself. [hangs head in shame.]

  65. alece says:

    [please see # 3 above.]

  66. alece says:

    that is going to haunt me for a long time.

    but that’s okay. you put on the heat. twice.

  67. gitz says:

    you may have sass deep down that you’ve just never experienced because you never took the risk to wear the boot.

    or… you may just not have sass. and that’s ok too. either way you’re cooler than you think you are. :)

  68. alece says:

    nice to see your face here now!

    i’m glad you read it in a NY accent. cause i type it with a NY accent!

  69. alece says:

    “other stuff other times.” — thanks, friend! very helpful! HA! :)

    you made me laugh, anneth.

  70. Andrew Ronzino

    Of course.

  71. Brandy says:

    you totally need to attempt the sassy high heeled boot friend. Do I need to send you some boots as well???? ;-) And I KNOW those red heels are still in SA! hahaha!!!

    Gitz, I have a confession to make:::: this morning I wore my white socks with my black ankle boots. SHAMEFUL I KNOW! However, my jeans are long enough that even when I crossed my legs you never saw it. THANK GOD! HAHA!!

  72. Brandy says:

    I knew I liked Tracee. :D

  73. alece says:

    yep. red heels are back in SA. and NO! you don’t need to send me boots!

  74. alece says:

    i would never be able to wear my husband’s socks, and i always secretly envy wives who can!

    “if your socks are the most interesting thing about your outfit, then you have a problem” — that cracked me up!

  75. alece says:

    i loved hearing this story.

    and really? only socks at night? aren’t your feet cold during the day?! it’s freezing up in the PNW!

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