How colourful, beautiful and downright brilliant are these socks by LA brand Hansel from Basel?   They’re just an utter delight, and these fabulous images have had me smiling all week.  (And, let’s face it, we all need as much help in the spirit-lifting department as we can get at the moment).

I have to admit, sock style hasn’t been on my design radar at all.  But whilst I’ve been hiding under this particular fashion rock, there seems to have been an explosion of gorgeous, covetable, and totally-the-opposite-of-boring socks.

These particular beauties are the creation of Los Angeles-based artist-turned-designer Hannah Byun.  Her aim was “to apply a sense of much-needed zest to everyday legwear” and I think you’ll agree she’s more than succeeded.

The brand’s quirky name was inspired by Hannah’s childhood nickname (“Hansel”) and her fascination with Switzerland (therefore “from Basel”).  So, from LA, via Switzerland, we now find ourselves in Japan – which is where most of the brand’s socks are made.

I hadn’t realised this, but Japan is home to some of the most exacting, high-end sock-makers in the world.  They approach the design and manufacture of this not so humble footwear with the same passion and exacting craftsmanship as a Parisian couture atelier.  Socks are considered just as important as any other piece of an outfit.  Sock culture is booming in Japan, and now it’s finding a wider audience.

So, I’m feeling really inspired now  to up my sock game.  For too long I’ve played it safe, with multi-packs of pedestrian, plain greys.  The winter weather may be here, but finally I’ve found a way to keep my toes stylishly cosy and warm the cockles of my colour-loving heart.

Visit Hansel from Basel for the full range (they ship internationally via DHL)

UK stockists include Couverture and the Garbstore in London, and Found in Bath

Images: Hansel from Basel

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