A new business opened this summer in the Ravenswood/Lincoln Square neighborhood, centered on the sock craze. Yep, Sockified Inc., carries hundreds of styles inside the 400-square-foot store, including items featuring dogs, cats, beets, carrots, stripes, argyles, Frida Kahlo, sharks, sheep, music, cowboys and, soon, an "adult section," one of the co-owners said.
"I love socks and this space was perfect," said Valerie Booth, one of the co-owners and the store's treasurer. "We were going to do [neighborhood] festivals and street markets, but found this space and decided to go with a brick and mortar."
The grand opening attracted about 50 people and there were sock raffles, and visitors were treated to beer and wine.
"The trend in socks is to have fun with them and express yourself," Booth said. "Men are wearing fun socks instead of ties. Sock designers are going all out with great colors, patterns and sayings. It's a fun business to be in and there are people who love socks. When they find us they are so happy, [and] that makes us happy."
The store's window display features a tornado, witch's feet, a yellow brick road and red paper poppiesall in a sock theme.
The most popular part of the store are the Frida Kahlo socks, so far at least.
Sockified offers knee highs, over the knees, crew, micro crews and more.
The Blue Q socks have funny messages and make great gag gifts. The I-Lux socks are gorgeous, soft and expensive, Booth said.
"Our goal is to be super-stocked for fall and the upcoming holidays," Booth said. "Long-term, [the goal is] to offer socks that are cool and beautiful and made for hiking, walking, running and working on your feet."
Booth was born in Uruguay, grew up in Peru and, as an adult, has lived in London, San Francisco, Miami, Montevideo ( Uruguay's capital ) and, now, Chicago. A lesbian, Booth is "in a relationship," she said. Booth also works as a caregiver, as the "chief of staff" for an 88 year-old woman who lives at the Admiral at the Lake, said Booth, who also is a photographer.
Eileen Reynolds, who identifies as bisexual and lives in Rogers Park, is the company president.
"We love socks and there is no other store dedicated exclusively to selling novelty socks in Chicago," Reynolds said. "Socks are a great way to express your style and creativity without breaking the bank. Sock lovers are generally friendly, funny, smart people and we get to work with them all day every day."
Sockified carries 100-percent cotton socks made in the United States, funny socks from Blue Q, beautiful luxury cashmere blends from Bella, and fabulously comfortable stretchy space dyed socks from EG Smith to mention a few, Reynolds said.
Sockified is at 4917 N. Damen Ave. For more information, call 773-275-4780.