Blast From The Past: The Space Invaders Argyle Sock


In 1980, the only thing hotter than the best-selling “Official Preppy Handbook” was blasting aliens at the local arcade.

Though they appealed to different demographics, three decades later the worlds of prepdom and video games have been combined in the form of Soxfords’ Space Invaders argyle sock, ideal for those who grew up in the ’80s or just wish they had.

You’ll have to forgive the bland headline. If the shoes in the photo had been Weejuns, I was toying with “Penny Arcade.” — CC

22 Comments on "Blast From The Past: The Space Invaders Argyle Sock"

  1. Excellent socks for children.

    Is that an untied shoelace I spy? How precious! Will this be the Next Big Thing for sprezzatourists now that the “half-unbuckled double monk strap shoe” has become a caricature?

  2. I could see Bush Sr. wearing them.

  3. James Redhouse | October 6, 2013 at 2:45 pm |

    From their website:

    “Embrace subtlety but let loose when appropriate.”

  4. Excellent socks for adults. Very much in keeping with the amusing traditions of Chipp, but in fact even more subtle since Chipp’s funny business was usually on ties, or jacket linings.

    Sprezzatura seems N/A, since it’s the idea of looking like you didn’t try. If you bought Space Invaders socks, everyone who notices will know you tried.

  5. It can’t be “Sprezzatura”, it’s socks, they don’t wear socks.

  6. Malvernlink | October 6, 2013 at 6:28 pm |

    Whymsical. I like them. Though as I write, the Trad Nazis are gathering their forces. You know, those poor souls that just can’t abide wearing white bucks in the winter. (which I do frequently) Oh, the horror.

  7. Um, guys? I was aiming the jab at those afflicted with Sprezzatourette Syndrome in regard to the untied shoelaces, not the socks.

  8. @Henry

    It’s quite clear that “precious” and “this” refer to the untied laces. Apparently the literacy rate has gone down.

  9. God I hate these things, almost as mush as ventless sport and suit coats.

  10. Roy R. Platt | October 7, 2013 at 11:14 am |

    A Video Pong version might also be nice.

  11. @Henry: Ok, then your post has two jabs: socks for children, and untied shoelaces for sprezza. The former is, in my opinion, bogus. I find the latter pretty amusing, although I’m not tuned in enough to the iGentry to know much about the monk strap phenomenon you mention.

    @Etymologue: I recommend that you learn to be more polite. You can even infuse good manners with a seemingly carefree, whimsical affect if that’s your preferred, um, aesthetic.

  12. Taliesin,

    I calls ’em as I sees ’em. So, too, does Etymologue, whose ability to read the plain meaning of what is written seems unaffected by recent declines in literacy—er, I mean, “decoding meaning through reading.”

    And how can an opinion on something as subjective as “what looks good/what is appropriate to wear” be “bogus”? Fer Pete’s sake, it’s an opinion, not an authoritative statement! (Incidentally, I’m not up on my hep cat jive lingo, so I might be mistaken, but isn’t bogus a bit, hmm, Bill and Ted-ish?)

  13. It probably is more Bill and Ted than hep cat. I’m considerably more Bill and Ted than hep cat. “Bogus” in the sense that we discuss Ivy style here, and as I stated the socks seem within the amusing subset of the tradition, as exemplified in the past by Chipp. Tagging them as “socks for children” would place them outside of that tradition and is not, despite your protestations, the same thing as saying “I don’t like them” or “I think they are ugly”.

  14. The socks, meh. I was more offended by the lack of cuffs on the khakis. 😉

  15. I am with Mac. Remind me of a dog without a tail. 😉

  16. Philly Trad | October 8, 2013 at 12:37 pm |

    Khakis with cuffs?
    Like sneakers with a tux.

    The important thing is that the stitching be 1 inch from the bottom, which it is in the photo.

  17. I’m just middle class, what do I know? I’ve never worn pants with out cuffs, with the exception of 501s or motorcycle leathers. Even when purchasing cheap RL wash khakis I get the longest length in my waist size and have them cuffed. Must be a regional thing, like calling university striped OCBDs candy striped. 😉

  18. J.J. Bartlett | October 8, 2013 at 9:39 pm |

    Aren’t we all middle class?
    The plutocrats are too busy oppressing the proletariat to have any free time to worry about such things.

  19. Philly trad, that made me laugh. Very nice word play 🙂

  20. Taliesin,

    They are socks for children in that they feature a children’s game on them. The video screen green is an other-than-classic color that typically appeals to a more juvenile sensibility.

    I like them, but would never wear them.

  21. Look at the site. They also come in an appealing light gray with black details. I’d wear those in a moment of cheekiness with a crowd that might notice (I’m of the generation that fed plenty of quarters to the original machines back in the day), but probably not the brown and lime.

  22. Specifics on shoes, please? I rather like the contrast tongue. Brand? Anyone?

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