As connoisseurs of history, we sometimes find styles, habits and turns of phrase from the past that we wouldn’t mind bringing back to the present, Doc Brown-style. This time around, we’re dusting off white socks.
The usual line on socks is pretty simple: gray, blue, brown or black. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can get into crazy patterns and fluorescent hues, but that’s pretty much the limit of blog-approved style.
It wasn’t always this way. In the Kennedy era, the tube sock was one of the great American staples alongside crewneck sweatshirts and pressed khakis—but somewhere along the line, the snow-white tube sock became a sartorial faux pas. By our lights, it’s due for a revival.
A Continuous Lean clued us in to this early instance of Sartorialist-style fashion photography. Photographer T. Hayashida took a tour of the Ivy League circa 1968, snapping pictures for posterity. Given that preppy style of that era is a touchstone for everyone from J. Crew to Shipley & Halmos, there’s more than a few pointers to pick up if you’re watching closely.