FEATURE | 2 April 2020
Photos: Courtesy of Socksss
Interview & Intro: Martin Hufnagel
Oscar and Sean founded Socksss as they saw a lack of interesting products in that segment. It's much more than that though: from the quality, their marketing and their care for nature they began to create their own universe.
With the launch of Socksss at The Wasted Hour, I chatted with founders Sean and Oscar about their use of organic cotton, the ideas behind their photoshoots, how skateboarding influenced them and much more.
Do you remember your first impression of each other?
Sean: There’s a lot of impressions, but one that stands out is a recent summer in Stockholm, when a little kid came up to Oscar and said, ‘Hi Dad!’ I started laughing so hard because of the look on Oscar’s face of slight panic/surprise, and then I myself started having some new questions for him (laughs).
How do you complement each other?
Oscar: Oscar is the genius.
Sean: He’s the creative, I’m the operator. Yin and yang/ chaos and order.
Why did you decide to produce socks instead of any other product?
Oscar: We saw a lack of interesting products in that segment of the market, and with our determination to create something better we went full on Socksss.
What sets your socks apart from other, standard products?
Sean: The feeling you get when you put a pair on – you instantly realise the work that has gone into it, and you’re getting more than your money’s worth: fit, quality, and functionality, blended with recycled packaging. You’re getting the best of the best.
How did you choose the manufacturing company that produces the socks?
Sean: Well, their family history with over 30 years of knowledge with responsible production and environmentally friendly materials. Their proximity to our head office in Europe helps as well when developing samples together. We will also produce in Japan soon for upcoming collections with limited editions, which will strategically help us meet demand in Asia.
Why do you use organic cotton?
Sean: We feel that when starting a new brand, you have choices, and why not start taking the right ones from the very beginning. We decided to use organic cotton instead of conventional cotton because it’s produced and certified to organic agricultural standards. Its production sustains the health of soils, ecosystems and people by using natural processes rather than artificial inputs such as the use of toxic chemicals or GMOs (genetically modified organisms). There’s also a big reduction in pressure on local water sources because it’s 80% rain fed. It’s a no brainer.
Can you tell us how your background from skateboarding influenced you in what you’re doing now?
Sean: I think the DIY mentality and dedication that comes from skateboarding has definitely influenced me in the way that you can really do something that you put your mind to and the continuous push to progress around that. No matter what obstacles you face or how hard you fall, you just get back up and keep trying, keep getting better.
How do you come up with the ideas for your photoshoots?
Oscar: We and Swim Club, who produce all the content, constantly want to create something that’s more than just some random picture of a foot, for example. We want to highlight the product as much as everything around it. In the end it’s all about having fun, so we try to reflect that in everything. We’re releasing some new content soon – stay tuned.
How do you want the brand to evolve?
Oscar: We want to grow organically and find our space. Always have fun.
Sean: I’d like the brand to be able to build local communities around the world, where knowledge is shared and creativity celebrated. I think we appeal to conscious customers who think more about what they spend their money on and take time before rushing into things. I’d like Socksss to be their go-to brand when it comes to socks by being that little luxury that you give yourself every day.
What’s your favourite place in Stockholm and why?
Sean: Under the apple trees in Rosendals Trädgård during summertime because you can take late afternoon naps and wake up feeling like you’re out in nature when you’re actually in the middle of the city.