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5 trendy design ideas for custom socks and ties

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5 trendy design ideas for custom socks and ties

Black, blue, grey and drab…these are the words often used to describe everyday socks and neckties, but not anymore. The 2010s have been an interesting period for fashion and esp men’s fashion. The socks and ties, two of the most essential basics of formal wear are not to be left behind. In the last few years, however, custom socks and custom ties have become a cool novelty partaken by the masses.

In 2019, the revenue in the Neckwear segment amounts to US$753 million. The global socks market is expected to reach around $24 Billion by 2025 led by custom socks.

We have witnessed the rise and increase in demand in “Happy Socks” – quirky, bold and brightly colored socks to replace their dark versions. Neckties have also seen a shift to the quirky, used to showcase people’s personalities and sometimes to make a point. Made easier with print-on-demand, online retailers have been making great money, even getting to a US president with their DTG socks…more on that later.

Printify’s custom DTG socks & custom ties

Printify’s custom DTG socks and neckties are the newest addition to our catalog.

200 needle knit DTG socks, cushioned for extra support and comfort. Available up to size 12US.

Custom tie with a silky finish and a keeper loop for holding tie tail. Made of 100% polyester.

How custom socks became signature: A case study.

George H.W. BushGeorge H.W. Bush
Former President George H.W. Bush wears pink socks at the dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Library at Southern Methodist University, Dallas on April 25, 2013. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File)

I refuse to live in a world that discusses statement socks and doesn’t address the man who established this trend before it was cool: former president George Bush Snr. Pres. Bush was one of several high-profile figures to adopt a menswear trend of using socks to add a bit of flash to an outfit and many times than not, to make a statement. 

George H.W. BushGeorge H.W. Bush
Pres. Bush wears socks with military jets flying in formation to a Pearl Harbor remembrance ceremony in Texas on Dec. 7, 2016. (Brett Coomer/Houston Chronicle via AP, File)

While visiting the friend and fellow former president, Bill Clinton, he wore a pair emblazoned with Clinton’s face. He wore Houston Texans’ socks when meeting with the head coach and at his wife’s, Barbara Bush, funeral he wore socks featuring books as a tribute to her work promoting literacy.

Perhaps the most well-known form of activism he ever did with socks was when the former president tweeted a photo of himself wearing a brightly colored pair of “Down Syndrome Super Hero” socks sent to him by John Cronin, a 22-year-old New York man with Down syndrome who with his father runs an online business selling socks. That marked the beginning of a “sock buddy” relation for the two. 

But why should you continue the fun sock and tie trend? Isn’t it over and done? Not even close. Just last year, the sock and necktie market grew to an estimated $11.7 million and expect to grow by 10% every year. Now that’s a buck to be made.

Design ideas for custom socks and custom ties

We’ve got 5 cool and trendy ways merchants are designing custom socks and neckties and making big bucks:

1. Gooo Sports! – Custom socks and ties as Sports & City memorabilia

What says Go Eagles! better than an eagle’s tie? Sports fans are known to be one of the most passionately vocal fans. Give them an outlet to let their love known and boom, there’s your winner. Other lovers that may indulge in these pleasures are city dwellers and tourists… custom ties that say I Heart NY have been flying off the shelves for eons.

Etsy: littlegentleman

Design the best sports neckties for the office guy who never gets to show his football jersey in the office or for the linebacker who wants to always want to show love for his team. There is not a shortage of teams, cities or simply landmarks for you to customize your socks or neckties with and with the right design, you might just pull in a new wave of customers.


2. But baby it’s cold outside – Custom socks and ties to mark a special occasion

Gone are the days when receiving a tie for Christmas sounded like a bad idea. Today, custom neckties are being made to specifically match the interests of the receiver. For instance, is papa a great sailing fan? Why not customize a tie with sailing boats on it, he’d like that. It’s not too late to put Santa on a sock, take the plunge.


Valentine’s day is around the corner and many are looking to say “I Love You” in their own unique way. Design great custom socks and add them to your catalog just in time, you won’t regret it. The same goes for other occasions like St. Patrick’s day and later, Halloween. Don’t miss out on any great sale season.


3. Mental health matters – Custom socks and ties as activism/campaign merchandise 

This decade, sensitive matters such as mental health awareness and political activism have taken the social space by storm. More and more people are drawn to activism in their everyday lives in any way they can. This has led to never before seen forms of awareness merchandise. From pink ties to purple socks, custom ties and custom socks have been a great medium for activism.


Design custom ties and custom socks with messages of something you really believe in and support. Remember John Chronin, president Bush’s sock buddy, to this day he continues to run a successful custom sock online business with the help of his father. It’s not too late to help others spread a positive message or stand for what they believe and you can play a great part in their journey.


4. Baby Yoda is super cute – Custom socks and ties for niche audiences

Anime manga, Star Trek, Star Wars, Pikachu… what do these things have in common? A great niche following. For many years, anime characters and those from many favorite SiFi films have been brought to life at different conventions around the world. Comic-Con, the greatest of them all, has seen millions throng to it year after year. Many spotting customized costumes to complete their looks. Custom ties and custom socks can def fit with this crowd.

Etsy: NakamuraDesigns

The buck doesn’t stop there… scientists and other field enthusiasts such as pianists have been known to spot a unique tie to showcase their interests. As an online entrepreneur, you would be remiss to not take advantage of these types of niche. Personalize custom socks with a cool character or place a keyboard on a tie. The possibilities are endless.

Etsy: KerryParkerStore

*Disclaimer: Just as you wouldn’t want your creative work stolen, please make sure the graphics/images you use are either open source, copyright-free or that you have the required permissions to avoid copyright infringement.

5. Yes, it’s a hotdog tie – Custom socks and ties as Personality pieces

It doesn’t have to be a special reason or occasion for one to wear happy socks or a fun necktie. In fact, this segment is the largest among the design choices for the masses. In 2008, a Swedish company started Happy Socks, a brand of creative, colorful and bold socks to amp up everyday wear. Today, they are a multi-million dollar company known around the world.


Hamburgers, chips, popcorn, and of course, avocados are a few of the items spotted on custom socks and custom neckties. Why not come up with even more ridiculously fun ideas and place them on your catalog for that person who cannot stand a navy blue sock one more day.


Custom socks and custom ties for print on demand

Printify doesn’t only hook you up with cool custom socks and custom neckties for you to personalize, we also drop ship your personalized socks and ties directly to your customers. 

Printify connects over 300,000 online shops to our network of 15 print providers with 90+ printing factories. 

Printify also provides a direct channel to popular online store platforms such as Shopify, Etsy, eBay, Wix and more by integrating with them to provide ease of use across these platforms. Use our free mockup generator to create products and sell on any of these sites at no start-up costs.

So what are you waiting for? Check out our custom socks, custom ties and the rest of our catalog and start designing today!

Various Print on Demand products by PrintifyVarious Print on Demand products by Printify

Amazing products, ready for your design

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