Layered Slouch Socks

Layered SocksWhy stop with only one pair of socks when two or even three looked so good?

Layered slouch socks, as a fashion style of the 80s, was a stand out among some pretty outrageous fads. If you had multiple colors on (and who didn’t?), you layered on multiple colors of slouch socks to match. This trend started near the time that anklet socks came back into fashion. No other decade spent so much fashion energy in the hosiery department.

NOTE: A big 80s “thank you” goes out to our reader, Jody, for helping find this totally awesome picture to illustrate the layered socks fashion fad.

The slouch sock was created to make several layers of sock colors show. The top was very elastic and stretchy, so they could overlap each other easily. They could also slouch down or fold over to keep them closer to your ankle.

Slouch SocksTo layer your socks effectively, you had to use multiple styles or colors. If your shirt was red and blue, you wore both red and blue socks. On the same foot – at the same time. Temperature be damned. If you really wanted to be creative, you could add on three pairs of socks or more.

If you wore three colors of socks or more, then you could partake in patterns. One side would be worn red, then white and then blue. The other side could sport white, then red and then blue. Sock manufacturers were smart during this time period and made socks thinner, keeping sock bunching in shoes at bay and allowing them to fit in your shoes!

To take this 80s fashion trend one step further, one could even wear two socks, but of different colors. The left might wear the blue, the right might wear the red. Extreme versions of this pattern extended out to the shoes – a matching pair of shoes is just so 1970s.

Girls were the biggest advocate of this fashion fad of the 80’s. Boys and men didn’t like to coordinate sock colors, much less layer them for effect (thank goodness for that!). Layered socks were worn with jeans, mini skirts, shorts, and pants with a tight roll. Stars on popular TV shows, like Family Ties and The Cosby Show furthered the popularity of this 80s fad. A classic use of layered slouch socks would be a brightly colored top, mini skirt, slouch socks to match the top and a pair of hi-top Reeboks. So cool.

MTV VJ, Alan Hunter (pictured with fellow VJ Martha Quinn), sporting slouched socksIf you are planning to attend an 80s-themed fiesta, this is just the sort of authentic 80s detail that will have others exclaiming how totally awesome you are!

Update 08.23.11: We love this picture of Alan Hunter, one of the original five VJs on MTV. He is sporting some seriously 80s slouch socks, and we love that they are red. An excellent choice. He can be seen here with Martha Quinn in 1985 at Live Aid in Philadelphia. These were the classic 80s slouch socks by maker EG Smith. You can still buy these, although they’ve been updated a little (addition of nylon and spandex to help the slouch stay put). Our thanks to Alan for sharing this great pic with us! He says of this pic, “We were 20 yards stage left of the most amazing acts on the planet.”

Author: Pia Sooney

Just a little obsessed with all things 80s, Pia still has her Swatch, her cassette tape collection, and her Converse Chucks. When not making friendship pins or listening to Depeche Mode, she runs a web design business.

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1 Comment

  1. My cheeks hurt from grinning the entire time I read this! I can still remember one of my favorite 80’s outfits, coordinating aqua and white shorts and top (with big elastic waist) that was only complete with two pair of matching slouch socks over my white hi tops. Pretty sure I had matching scrunchies, too! :) Love your site xoxo

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