The Sock Collector

If you have been following my blog since the beginning (at least since August 2015), or if you follow me on Instagram or Twitter, then you know that I collect socks. Yes, socks! I absolutely love socks! They’re my happy place, and always put a smile on my face when I am having a bad day. Since I haven’t written about my socks since August 2015, and I had rushed through the pictures in that post (yikes), I wanted to update my sock post! (My original sock post: The Sock Problem.) (You can see all of my Instagram sock posts by searching the hashtag #LizzsSocks.)

I have a lot of socks! I actively collect them, and I haven’t gotten rid of a pair of socks in so long I can’t even remember. I’m pretty sure there are even still socks in my old dresser at my parents’ house, which I want to grab the next time I’m there. No, I don’t really have a favorite pair. There are several pairs that I consider “some of my favorites,” but they’re all favorites for different reasons!

sock drawers signedBefore I can get into what socks I have, there are some logistics we must discuss. First off, I have enough socks that they have their own drawers in my closet. There are four drawers full of socks, sorted by size/type: short socks, medium socks, long socks, and functional socks. Organizing them in this manner makes it much easier to find the specific type of socks that I want to wear that day. Currently, my compression socks are in the drawer with the short socks, even though they are knee length; I keep them in there because they’re easier to find that way!

To someone that doesn’t collect socks, my sorting may be a little confusing.

Sock Lengths

(Can’t remember image source.)

  • My short socks drawer contains ankle, no show, and socks that I call “ballet style” socks. The ballet style socks are shaped like ballet flats, and pretty much only cover your toes and the sole of your foot. As I mentioned above, all of my compression socks are currently in my short socks drawer because they’re easier to find that way; I’m currently trying to convince Dan to buy me another small drawer for my compression socks!
  • My medium socks drawer contains 3/4 crew, crew, and boot length socks. I consider all of my toe socks “medium” socks, even though some of them are a little longer than that; it’s just easier to put all the toe socks together.
  • My long socks are my over calf, knee high, over knee, and thigh high socks. Sadly, I have very few over knee and thigh high socks! I would like to add a few more non-holiday thigh high socks to my collection (I have my eye on some gorgeous ones from Sock Dream – link is a referral link and I get rewards points the first time you buy $10+ from them).
  • My functional socks drawer is where I keep my “boring” socks and fuzzy socks. I do have several pairs of plain white/black socks that I wear when I’m likely to get my socks horribly dirty, or if I just put lotion on my feet and want to walk around. The plain socks are great when you’re painting a room, because then you don’t want to cry if you step in dropped paint! This drawer also has all of my hiking socks and sock liners in it, which aren’t really boring because hiking is awesome, but they are definitely boring to look at. My fuzzy socks are in this drawer because they’re bulky and take up too much room to put in any of the other drawers! I pretty much exclusively wear my fuzzy socks around the house, unless it’s below 0°F outside and I have to leave the house. All of my slippers are a little large on my feet, but it’s because the fuzzy socks take up a lot of space!
  • There are some socks in the dresser with my exercise clothes. If you have been following along, I do Pilates based physical therapy once a week. When I am healthy enough, I also do a weekly Pilates group class. Pilates is best done barefoot (unless you have serious foot problems, then you’ll need to consult your physical therapist or doctor) for flexibility and grounding purposes, but bare feet can be slippery! The Pilates studio I go to sell these wonderful socks (I’ve seen them other places too) that are short toe socks with grippers on the bottom! Since I only wear them for Pilates, I keep them with my Pilates clothes for easy finding.
  • It’s worth noting that I do have several pairs of tights and trouser socks (essentially tights that are boot length or knee high), but they are kept separate from my socks because I only wear them for very specific events. All of my tights and trouser socks are in a separate drawer in a different location in my closet; they share the drawer with my bandanas (great for hiking/camping/concerts) and decorative scarves/wraps that I don’t wear very often.

Now that you know how I organize things, it’s probably a lot more obvious how serious I take my socks! Dan and I joke around about it, but he knows I get extremely upset when anything happens to my socks. I will also beg him to let me buy cute socks whenever I see them (he usually says yes because they’re not very expensive). I have been collecting socks for at least twenty years (oh geez, I just had an age crisis! How am I 27 already?!) and my mom gives me socks for every gift giving occasion (as an add on to other presents). I absolutely love socks, and it’s a little out of control. Since August 2015, I have added 30 more pairs of socks to my collection! (That’s an average of one and a half pairs a month.)

Quick Note: It’s very hard to get an accurate count of how many socks I have. There always seem to be at least a few pairs in the laundry. I tried to get these counts when about 90% of the laundry was done, but I may have still missed some.

Short Socks Drawer

This drawer is full to bursting, which is why I’m hoping to get a separate drawer for my compression socks soon. This is almost the only drawer I open in hot/warm weather! (I very rarely wear longer socks in the summer. Though, I will use functional socks frequently.) Most of the short socks are thin, which is great for warm weather.

Compression socks are essential for my dysautonomia! I do not wear them every day, like some people with POTS need to, but I definitely need them for certain activities. For me, hot weather causes extreme blood pooling, so I have to wear them if I’m going to be out in the heat for a while (even if it’s just to run errands). I also get extremely fatigued being upright (not lying down) for a long period of time, and I’ve noticed the compression socks really help improve my energy. Since they help with my energy, I wear them to go out (even if I’m going to be using my chair or sitting for a long time), especially on bad days. Since I want to be able to wear them with shorts and skirts, I need cute compression socks! My first two pairs were boring black ones from Walmart, which work great but are just knee high black socks. Then I found RejuvaHealth (not affiliate link, just highly recommend) and fell in love with their cute compression socks! They have plain, boring compression wear too, but they have some absolutely adorable compression socks! My absolute favorite pair (that I own) are the grey dot knee highs! Compression Socks = 7 pairs

compression socks signed

2 black pairs on the left are plain, from Walmart; black ones on the left have roses on them and are from RejuvaHealth.

The ballet socks are only worn at home, as a kind of “warm weather slipper.” If I try to wear them with shoes, even flats, they constantly fall off my heel and bunch up under my foot! Uncomfortable. However, since I have cold toes constantly, they’re perfect for keeping my toes from freezing in the summer without overheating. Ballet Socks = 8 pairs

short socks signs

Ballet socks are the 8 on the far right.

I also have a significant collection of ankle and no show socks. Some, I only wear around the house because they are a little more juvenile than I tend to wear now. Most, however, I wear quite frequently! They’re thinner than average, and since they’re so short, they’re nice and cool. If I need to wear shoes in the summer (I’m usually in flip flops) I will wear my short socks to keep my feet cool! I also wear short socks over my compression socks to keep them from getting dirty (so they last longer, they’re a bit of an investment). Short Socks = 42 pairs

Short Sock Drawer Total: 57 pairs

Medium Sock Drawer

This drawer is definitely the most full! I go through phases where I don’t wear this length very often, but then I’ll start wearing them every day. It really doesn’t make much sense. I do like this length for spring and fall, where the weather is cool enough that you need to wear long pants but not so cold you’re freezing, because they protect my ankles from drafts! I also used to wear this length sock with capris a lot. Now, I don’t really wear capris at all, so that doesn’t really happen.

I don’t wear my toe socks as often as I used to (they used to be my favorites). Partly, that is due to the poor circulation I now have in my feet: if I wear toe socks my toes can’t share any warmth with each other. However, they can be nice and toasty if I put them in my slippers or if I wear them with another pair of “normal” socks over the top!

medium socks signed

This is how I have to organize my medium & long socks so they fit in their drawers (neat and tidy layers).

I have a few pairs of medium socks that may seem kind of boring (the blue ones), but I still find them very pretty. The main reason I have those “plain blue” socks? Because they are some of the softest socks I’ve felt, are lightweight, and were really cheap at Sam’s Club! Hey, you can’t beat a deal on comfortable socks!

Medium Sock Drawer Total: 71 pairs

Long Sock Drawer

I do quite enjoy long socks, especially in the winter! Sometimes, I’ll wear them with my Bermuda shorts in the summer (or even my short shorts, though I don’t wear them as often) for a fun splash of color. Usually, I wear them in the winter because they add an extra layer to my lower legs (which are always cold) and don’t slouch in my boots. A vast majority of my long socks are holiday specific, and since most of the holidays are in the cooler months, that leads to wearing far more long socks in the fall and winter. I really want to get some more thigh high socks, that aren’t holiday specific though, because I do think that long socks with shorts and skirts are absolutely adorable!

long socks signed

On days that I don’t feel like wearing compression socks, long socks can be beneficial. While they aren’t compressive, they do have slight compression to them due to needing to stay up on your legs! On days that I don’t need to do a lot of walking (or if it’s cold) they do help with my circulation and can help keep blood pooling to a minimum. If you really need compression socks, do not use them as a substitute, but if you’re like me (don’t absolutely need compression socks since I don’t pass out or have blood clots) then they can be quite beneficial!

Long Sock Drawer Total: 48 pairs

Functional Sock Drawer

Sadly, since my health has declined further recently, I don’t really get to use my hiking socks anymore. I will wear my hiking socks and boots to the CO Renaissance Faire, or anytime we are going to be outside on uneven ground for a long time. I’m really sad I can’t go hiking right now, but we are working on trying to figure out an exercise plan that will help me slowly build up to it! I really miss hiking! (I’ve been hiking since I was a child. I joined a Girl Scout hiking club when I was 12, and then started backpacking with GS every weekend at age 14 until about age 16/17. It’s always been my happy place.) Hopefully, my hiking socks will get to see a trail sometime this summer! Hiking Socks & Liners = 14 pairs

hiking socks signed

Sock liners (3 pairs) are in the lower left

As I mentioned above, I do have several pairs of plain black and plain white athletic socks. The black socks I bought for work several years ago, because we were required to wear black (fancy) shoes with black dress socks. Thankfully, my boss was lenient, and allowed me to wear the more plush athletic socks (since I had foot problems). I don’t wear them very often anymore, however, because they are extremely linty and I get black fuzz all over my feet! (And then Dan won’t give me foot rubs!) The white athletic socks I almost never wear outside of the house. I love them, however, for painting because I don’t care if I step in spilled paint. I wear them for heavy cleaning (yard work, work in the garage, etc) jobs where my feet are likely to get covered in dirt, and most frequently wear them after I have put lotion on my feet and need to walk around. Sometimes, I’ll wear a pair to sleep in if my feet are being particularly cold, but I hate wearing socks to bed so that doesn’t happen often. Plain Athletic Socks = 16 pairs

athletic socks signed

fuzzy socks signed

My favorite socks in this drawer are my fuzzy socks! I have had three of my fuzzy sock pairs for a really long time, but I barely touched them. Originally, I didn’t want to wear them out, and I was scared of ruining them at my parents’ house – I was really good at snagging my socks on the few spots some carpet tacks are exposed. Then, I didn’t want to get them disgusting in the dorms or at the college house Dan lived in (his roommates didn’t like to keep the common areas clean). Then, I kind of forgot about them when I moved into my own places (with roommates), because of how I had to organize my clothing. When Dan and I got our own apartment, I found them and was extremely excited because I had winter and a perfect reason to wear them! Now, I wear them all the time in the winter! Those original three pairs? They’re almost worn out, sadly. But, since they’re wearing out, I’m okay with wearing them out of the house (in my boots) if I need extra warmth! My mom just got me some Christmas ornament fuzzy socks that will be perfect in December! I also just bought a pair of knee high fuzzy socks (that happen to be zebra print, which was a fun coincidence when I noticed) and Christine gave me a pair of knee high fuzzy socks she didn’t need anymore. I also have a few pairs of slipper socks, which are more chunky knit socks that have grippers on the bottom so you can’t slip. This fall/winter, I’ll be keeping an eye out for some inexpensive pairs of short/mid length fuzzy socks to take the place of my worn out pairs. Fuzzy/Slipper Socks = 7 pairs

Functional Sock Drawer Total = 37 pairs

Exercise Socks

As I said above, I love Pilates! My Pilates toe socks have made the exercises much easier, with their little bit of grip. I also don’t like walking around barefoot on industrial carpet – the texture is bad, there is a lot of dust due to the amount of other people that walk on them, and the amount of people that walk on the creep me out a little – so they provide just the right amount of coverage to keep my feet protected! They come in fun patterns and I have a few holiday (fourth of July and winter) patterns that I enjoy wearing. All of mine are Toe Sox (not affiliate) brand, because that’s what they have at my Pilates studio. I only have the Bellarina style ones, but I just noticed they have knee highs and now I’m really craving some of those! They also have some knee high compression and some casual socks … and now I’m nerding out over socks again! (There were definitely some of these in the laundry when I counted, I wear them often.) Exercise Socks = 10 pairs

pilates socks signed

Exercise Sock Total = 10 pairs

So there you have it! All of my socks! Phew… Thank you for reading that long post! Oh right… you probably would like the grand total?

Socks Total = 223 pairs

Am I done collecting socks? Not even close! There are some socks that are finally wearing out (I have so many they don’t wear out) and I have some types that I really want. I love collecting socks, and I’m just glad it’s less expensive than some things that people collect! While Dan teases me about my socks, he does see how much joy I get out of them, and especially how much happiness I get when a stranger compliments me on them! He’s okay with my collection, as long as I only add to it reasonably (inexpensive, souvenir, socks completely different from the rest that I own, etc). I will be collecting socks for the rest of my life, it’s just my thing!

What little, quirky thing(s) do you do/collect to give yourself a smile? Comment below and let me know!

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