For the Aesthete
The expansive Unionmade at the Grove carries high-quality men’s socks for all occasions, like Pantherella’s merino wool dress numbers and those by Tender, which are durable enough to be worn with work boots. Everyday styles come in fun “aloha tribal” patterns, such as Kapital’s (made in Kojima, Japan, the denim capital of the world) and blanket styles by Anonymousism. From the Alden desert boot man to the Jack Purcell Converse guy, this place has your feet covered. » 189 The Grove Dr., Beverly Grove, 323-965-2248.
For the Booster
A tourist hub might seem an odd location for an emporium devoted to socks. But there’s something spirited and civic minded about footwear that bears the Dodgers logo or the state flag or the Hollywood sign—all images you’ll find at Los Angeles Sock Market inUniversal City. The shop has a monopoly on novelty prints, too—from Marvel Comics superheroes to postimpressionist paintings to every beast on Noah’s Ark. If you can think of a cultural reference—and even if you can’t—it’ll likely show up here. » 1000 Universal Center Dr., Ste. 140, Universal City, 818-509-1340.
For the Show-Off
The selection at Opening Ceremony offers men plenty of reasons to cuff their jeans and show some ankle. The stylish store stocks a sizable stash of embroidered pieces from Kenzo and mohairs from Marwood. Don’t worry, the shop is equal opportunity: Unisex options include Happy Socks, in superior combed cotton that’s woven with cheerful patterns (patchwork, geometrics, stripes in primary colors). Gals daring to sport (again!) the socks-with-high-heels look will delight in the lacy anklets from Japan’s Tabio and the folk art- and wallpaper-inspired styles from France’s Bonne Maison. » 451 N. La Cienega Blvd., Beverly Grove, 310-652-1120.
For the Zealot
The same folks who head to Kitson for cashmere sweat pants and T-shirts emblazoned with Pets Are People Too already know that the retailer sells a wide array of quirky foot coverings. Medical marijuana crusaders will dig Gumball Poodle’s tube socks with the word Weed on the calf; sushi lovers will enjoy the ones with chopsticks and spicy tuna rolls from Socksmith. Kitson also carries an impressive assortment from Orange County-based Stance (pictured), which this season favors the popular tribal, tie-dye, and camouflage prints. » 115 S. Robertson Blvd., Beverly Grove, 310-859-2652.