Have you just got back into fashion? Start with socks
Many of us still slowly wade through the waters of creative self-styling after dressing purely functionally for so many months. Smart Approach: Start with smaller pieces of your everyday look and let accessories and accents breathe new life into the basics that have been in your rotation.
For easy entry, look down at your feet. The shoes are the obvious style players, but the socks they are paired with are even lower engagement. Think of them as a whimsical piece that you can change out every day for a new injection of flavor. From there, you might feel more able to mix it all up from head to toe.
For some sock styling expertise and a general direction to liven up our looks, we spoke to Happy Socks Creative Director Paula Maso, a self-proclaimed advocate of color and pattern. Originally from Venezuela, Maso has always loved color. So, when she then moved to Sweden and discovered Happy Socks (and their mission of mood-enhancing shoes), she knew it was the perfect fit. Having been with the company as a designer since 2016 (she has been Creative Director since 2020), Maso has overseen collaborations with cultural forces like the Beatles and the Billionaire Boys Club. She also sowed the seeds of Hysteria, the first collection of “trendy socks” for women.
We asked Maso to share some ideas on (mismatch) matching colors and patterns, why she loves contrasts in fashion, and how to use the underrated sock sock to add a subtle yet stylish punch.
“I like strong women who aren’t afraid to stand out,” says Maso, who cites female pop-punk icons as major style models. It’s about “the perfect balance between the sweet and the hard,” she says of a platinum blonde favorite. “She mixed dog tooth designs with leopard prints like no other, and I still think she’s an ambassador for color and patterns.” Of another legendary blonde singer, she says, “Her iconic hairstyles and makeup are always absolutely amazing.” Lately, she loves the most badly raised prestige televisions glamorous teens. “I love their creative makeup, their dreamy clothes and the fact that they don’t apologize for their individuality,” she says.
Adopt the contrast
Maso’s boyfriend once described his outfit-pairing formula as “party up, business down.” The description is appropriate. The designer says her looks usually consist of a patterned or colored top with a pair of tailored plain or plaid pants (“the only pattern I choose for the pants”). “I like the contrasts and I usually add a bit of bling with jewelry or makeup and then break it up with a pair of loafers or a pair of [chunky Oxfords], “she said.” This has been my uniform for several years!
When asked if it was forbidden to mix gold and silver, Maso replied: “Virginia? It has to be one of the best mixes! She maintains her belief in the beauty of contrasts and says, “Fortunately, many people and brands have understood this. I think we live in a fantastic time where we mix things up and create interesting and new combinations. Another once questioned combo, pink and red, is one of her current favorites. “They go so well together – the red brings out the strength of the duo and takes away the sweetness from the pink,” she says.
Dare to stand out
The Venezuelan native studied graphic design at the University of Caracas and fashion photography at the London College of Fashion, before moving to Sweden several years ago. “Now that I have lived [in Sweden] over the past few years, I’ve come to appreciate and hate the mentality of not wanting to stand out, ”explains Maso, adding“ it works to create an egalitarian society, but it doesn’t always create the most interesting fashion choices. . Although she notes that in recent years people have become more daring and open to standing out a little more. “A little glam never hurt anyone,” Maso says. “It can also be difficult to shake off old stereotypes, but in reality I think Sweden is more colorful than we think. ”
Start with the socks
“Happy Socks has managed to find its way into the drawers of people around the world [because] it’s much easier to start with something small, ”explains Maso. “It’s a contagious feeling! she said with the contagious joy of a little flair. To help us get started, Maso is sharing here some tips for pairing socks with different types of shoes, whether you are the slides and tubular socks type or opt for a celebrity high fashion declaration.
“Hysteria is our ideal collection for the holidays; unlike our other collections, we treat Hysteria a little differently after each season, ”explains Maso. “The majority of the collection has no patterns, so we let our imaginations run wild when it comes to colors and textures. We are happy to add sequins, sheer materials and embellishments, which makes them perfect for heels and sandals. In other words, grab a pair when you’re ready to be the star of the party.
Embroidery, shares Maso, is the minimalist collection of Happy Socks. “We wanted to introduce a simpler product that still has a fun feel,” says the Creative Director. “We strive to choose embroidered designs and contrasting accent colors that are simple, but never boring. “
Paula Maso in Hysteria socks. Photographer: Elena Ramirez Styling: Elena Ramirez and Asia Pietrzyk.
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