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  1. #1
    Join Date
    21st December 05
    Hawick, Scotland

    Scathing Attack on White Socks

    A fashion guru makes a strong attack on the concept of men wearing white socks in today's BBC magazine.

    Men shouldn't wear white socks

    If there is one rule all men should still follow, this is it, say some in the fashion industry. The only outfit white socks don't ruin is a sports kit, they add.

    "Unless you're exercising there is absolutely no appropriate moment to wear white socks," says Alex Bilmes, editor of Esquire magazine. "These types of rules exist to make sure fashion innocents don't make such a bad mistake." Certain people in the Netherlands seem to think so.

    As well as attracting attention because of the colour, white socks are usually made of bulkier material and ribbed because they are mainly for sport. They look cheap and nasty with normal clothes, say fashion experts.

    "Don't even try to wear them ironically, they're horrific," says Groves. "Coloured and patterned socks are the big trend."
    I guess white hose are out then.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    14th September 09
    Ocala FL
    Thatʻs the kind of article that sends me hunting for the one pair of white socks Iʻve got so I can wear them everywhere. Non-ironically.

    It also says that red and green donʻt go together. Time to wear my Maxwell kilt exclusively. With white socks.

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  5. #3
    Join Date
    17th January 09
    The Highlands of Norfolk, England
    When I was in the Royal Air Force, we used to say that only virgins and tennis players wore white socks.

    I hadn't qualified as one for years and never understood the scoring of the other so I've never worn white socks - or hose for that matter.

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  7. #4
    Join Date
    18th October 09
    Orange County California
    In the Pipe Band world "black is the new white".

    Throughout the 1990s white was utterly dominant and year after year every single top band at the World Pipe Band Championships wore the stark white bobbletop hose.

    When white went out it went out fast and a year or two later most of the bands were wearing black (or navy or charcoal). But oddly black hasn't become quite as dominant as white was. I wonder why... usually the pipe band folk are fashion lemmings.

    I only saw 15 of the Grade One bands this year, and of those 15 Boghall & Bathgate was the only veteran Grade One band wearing white. Three bands recently promoted from Grade Two were also wearing white. The rest of Grade One was wearing black, navy, or charcoal, with one mid-grey and one Ancient Blue. In other words there's more variety now than there was during the 20-year period when everyone was wearing white.

    About white socks for "Saxon dress", well here in SoCal many people wear Vans or white walking shoes etc and it's white socks, usually, with them. With a suit? Never.
    Proud Mountaineer from the Highlands of West Virginia; son of the Revolution and Civil War; first white settlers on the Guyandotte

  8. #5
    Join Date
    7th February 11
    London, Canada
    Years ago I took my last pair of white tube socks, laundered them twice, and now use them in my travelling church kit as protection for my brass candlesticks. They work well there
    Last edited by Father Bill; 13th September 13 at 05:34 AM. Reason: typo
    Rev'd Father Bill White
    Parish priest, lover of God, people, dogs, joy, humour & clarity. Theologian, teacher, leader, administrator, philosopher, linguist, dreamer, traditionalist, bon-vivant, encourager of hearts & souls & firm believer in the value of dignity, decency, & duty.

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  10. #6
    Join Date
    26th November 04
    Dayton, OH
    Good grief. White socks were picked on as long as I can remember. I was given a hard time for wearing white socks even in elementary school. I guess peer pressure worked because I donít think I wore them again except maybe for gym class.

    The comment on red/green is ridicules. Look up articles on selecting clothing colors. Selecting complementary colors is a way to create an outfit that stands out. It may not be appropriate for all situations but it is one that works. Guess what is complementary: red and green. See http://www.realmenrealstyle.com/color-wheel-menswear/ about the color wheel and clothing. The complementary comment is half way down the article.


  11. #7
    Join Date
    2nd January 10
    Crieff, Perthshire
    Marmite! Love it - hate them

  12. #8
    Join Date
    7th December 12
    western North Carolina
    This is a prime example of the fashion industry trying to dictate it's own ideas to the rest of us, sort of like the dictate which says women should not wear white except during certain seasons. Fashion mores change nearly as fast as we change socks. It is unfortunate that some people hang on every word of the so-called fashion gurus, in order to feel like they fit into the "in crowd." My fashion sense hasn't changed significantly in 50 years, yet I never feel left out.
    Bruce, Clan Muirhead

    Be who you are; those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind.

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  14. #9
    Join Date
    3rd January 06
    Dorset, on the South coast of England
    I saw men wearing white hose last weekend - though it was with britches, buckle shoes and frock coats - and wigs for that matter - their dress was consistent with the dances they were performing.
    There were belly dancers and various morris men around too - and most people were enjoying the show, though there were a couple of little tots in their pushchairs gazing about in astonishment.

    White stockings for everyday wear were the mark of a gentleman - and most women would wear them on Sundays or holidays because they were not working those days. The quality of the thread and the thickness of it denoted their rank or status, but of course they were not on show.

    It could be a cultural thing, somehow and the wearing of white socks is a far greater faux pas in the US than here in the UK, where kilted evening dress with white hose is not unusual, and a very pleasing sight too.

    I think there was a photo of Hamish and company in such attire posted on the forum, and it could scarcely be faulted.

    Anne the Pleater

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  16. #10
    Join Date
    25th September 04
    Victoria, BC, Canada 1123.6536.5321
    Thank you Anne the Pleater for bringing up this point.

    I think it is good to remind ourselves from time to time, where much of what we think of as accessories for our kilts comes from. Prior to the Regency period and the introduction of long pants by Beau Brummel, most men in the western world were wearing powdered wigs and short pants with white knee hose.

    White was considered the mark of a gentleman because it is harder to keep clean. Clean and starched anything denoted one with enough money to afford servants.

    The military use of white in uniforms also comes from this period, for much the same reason. White leather and canvas requires daily 'chalking' to keep them white. Polished brass, and in fact almost all 'bright' metal required daily polishing. Even the 'spit shine' of our shoes date from this period.

    It is pretty easy to follow this trend in fashion all the way up to today. Our wing collars, on tuxedo shirts with starched panels, are stark white. Our Jabot and lace cuff are always white. When I was growing up in the '50's a brand new, spotlessly clean, white t-shirt became famous. In the '60's no business man would be caught dead in a soiled white shirt. (Many would keep spares in their desk drawer and changed their shirt two or three times during the day.)

    Anyone today who has ever worn white hose with their kilt can attest to the amount of trouble white is. And I'm not talking about ecru or 'cream' hose.

    So, in effect, white has always said to the world "I've made it" "I have enough money or spare time to care for my whites".

    I sometimes think we forget this in today's world. We have washing machines and synthetic fabrics that retain their bright white with very little work. Our fabrics today retain hard, sharp creases without constant starching and ironing.

    I can agree with the fashion gurus that white socks with dress trousers is not a good fashion statement. If however, you want to be historically accurate and traditional in your kilt, a pair of "The whitest of white" kilt hose do have a place in your wardrobe.
    Steve Ashton
    Skype (webcam enabled) thewizardofbc
    I wear the kilt because:
    Swish + Swagger = Swoon.

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