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January 28th, 2016
Can you believe January is over already? It seems like New Year’s Day was just last week. Excitingly, there are still New Year’s celebrations to be had! On February 8th, Chinese Lunar New Year—or the Spring Festival—kicks off the Year of the Monkey. This ancient holiday is celebrated by people in dozens of countries all over the world, including a great many folks right here in the States. It is not unusual at this time of the year to see red and gold decorations in homes and storefronts, or watch a firework display or dragon dance. Each year in the Chinese calendar is represented by one of 12 animal hosts from the Chinese Zodiac (fun fact: Sock Dreams was born in late 2000, the year of the Dragon!). 2016’s animal is the Monkey, and we have created a special limited-edition sticker pack to commemorate the occasion.
Monkeys are clever, curious, and mischievous. Our very own playful little sock monkey is made from a pair of White Knees in “Banana” (we’re out of stock right now, but you can sign up for notifications!). The sign’s lucky colors are blue, gold, and white, and as luck would have it, our Dreamer Holiday Stripes come in those exact colors. If long socks aren’t your thing, try Dreamer Holiday Crews and Holiday Mismatched Sleeves! Instead of our usual lotus, our logo lady holds a chrysanthemum, which is lucky for the Monkey, in bright golds and oranges.
But our Monkey is not alone, she’s brought some old friends! In our Spring 2016 sticker pack, we’ve got some favorites from past years: Mardi Gras Mask, Sweetheart Candies, Violet Valentine, and a be-freckled St. Pat’s lady with an emerald green lotus. This spirited $5 sticker pack is your only chance to get your paws on our exclusive new Year of the Monkey logo, and supplies are limited, so order fast before this playful primate slips away for another twelve years!
Here in the Pacific Northwest the winters tend to be cool and wet, which really influences how we dress. It’s no secret that Northwesterners, and especially outdoorsy types, tend to be fans of polar fleece: a felt-like synthetic material with fantastic insulating and hydrophobic properties, which make it perfect for the cold and the wet! Polar fleece is often used as a lighter weight and vegan alternative to wool, as it boasts many of wool’s best qualities, while weighing a fraction as much! Much as we love polar fleece, we didn’t really expect to have socks made from it, because most socks are shaped with knitting, while fleece must be cut and sewn. We are now thrilled to have our expectations far exceeded by Polar Feet, a company specializing in the warmest, coziest polar fleece socks!
Jellybean Slipper Socks, in sizes for kids and adults
Based in Canada, this is a company that knows about staying warm! With decorative treads on the soles of each pair, their slipper socks are sure to keep you cozy while preventing gravity-related accidents around the house.
And these are definitely not just for grownups. While we do have Lumberjack slipper socks in four sizes ranging from a kids’ 6 to a men’s 11, some of these styles are just for the wee ones! Fleece is a particularly great alternative to wool for kids (or anybody with wool sensitivities) as it isn’t scratchy on their tender little toes.
Going beyond slipper socks, Polar Feet fills in some other niches where we could use a little more insulation. Winter boots become even cozier with the addition of polar fleece knee highs, available in three styles, and two calf widths! Furthermore, if you haven’t got winter boots, these are perfect to wear with rain boots when you get hit with unexpected snow.
For those who don’t wear winter boots or rain boots because they’re busy finding ways to wear flip-flops all year ‘round, we’re here for you! Polar Feet makes fleece Flip-Flop Crews, with a separate big toe, resembling Japanese tabi socks. You don’t have to give up the flip-flop lifestyle to keep your toes from turning blue anymore.
With a product line this unique and utilitarian, we know that Polar Feet is a company worth watching. As their website says, they laugh at the cold, and now so can you!
Darn Tough has everything we love in a sock company. Their products are produced exclusively in the USA. They use quality, cruelty free materials. Not only are their styles fashionable, but they are highly functional and extremely durable. But what really sets Darn Tough apart, is their lifetime replacement guarantee.
When Ric Cabot founded Darn Tough in 2004, he came with three generations of family experience. His father started Cabot Hosiery Mill in 1978 in Northfield Vermont, and this is where all of Darn Tough’s socks are still produced. In fact, they believe so adamantly in producing their products in the USA, that they’ve memorialized this belief on a sign on their factory wall. It reads: “Nobody ever outsourced anything for quality.” We are certainly pleased with the quality of their US made socks.
Darn Tough uses only 100% merino wool. Their wool is sourced in the US when possible, and in Europe and Oceania when supply dictates. But they always ensure that the sheep are treated humanely.
The quality standards are so high at Darn tough, that they hand inspect every pair of socks before letting them out the door. Their fine gauge knitting machines use very fine needles which allows for high density stitching. That’s what gives the socks their high durability and is what makes them so darn tough! Their socks are sturdy enough for all kinds of outdoor activities, including hiking, skiing, running, cycling, and more.
The folks at Darn Tough stand behind their products completely. If you are somehow able to wear through one of their socks, you can return the socks to them and they will send you a brand new pair. This is not a one or two year guarantee, but a lifetime one. Now that’s a company that has faith in their socks. And that’s one of the many reasons that we have faith in them too!
It’s been over three years since we started sending out our email newsletters, and it’s been an awful lot of fun! Of course, three years is plenty of time for rethinking things, and it so happens that we think we can do even better… If you’re already signed up for our Dreamer Dispatches, you may have noticed that in addition to our customarily wordy pieces, we’ve recently started sending some short-form emails. These are heavier on photos, and feature new items and sales. Of course, our newsletter has only ever been sent to folks who have signed themselves up for it, and so the time has come to offer our followers a fuller range of choices.
Enter our new subscriptions page! You now have the freedom to pick and choose which emailings you’d like to receive! We still have the classic, “Newsletter” option, which features a monthly story or article about socks. This is where the really meaty content lives, and they range from informative to incredibly silly, but they’re just about always a fun read!
Selecting the “New & Featured Items” box will bring you image-heavy content, with minimal text. If you want to stay on top of what’s happening in the world of socksy fashions, this is the email for you! We hand-select the very best of each new batch of socks for these newsletters.
Of course, the email that everybody is going to want to sign up for would be the “Sales & Discounts” option. This will be your first place to learn about discount codes and items that are currently available at a special sale price! Need we say more??
You might notice that there is a fourth option for the “Sock Dreams Portland Store”. This is for our local brick and mortar shop, and while these emailings are still in the works, they will eventually be a great resource for locals (or anybody visiting Portland) as they’ll feature store-only items, discounts and events! You can go ahead and sign up right now if you’d like to receive these once they’re available!
Those of you who signed up for our newsletters back when there was just the one option will continue to receive all of the first three types of email by default, but you can change your subscription settings, too! Just go to the bottom of your last Dreamer Dispatch and click the linked word, “unsubscribe.” Rather than automatically removing you from our email list as it used to, this will now take you to a page with options, where you can uncheck any email types that you don’t wish to receive anymore. We never want anybody to feel spammed by us, which is why we believe in giving our customers options… but of course we hope you’ll choose to join in the fun of all of our newsletters!
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