The Socks I Sent to Japan Arrived!

I spotted two pairs of socks I sent in this photo: the hot-pink stripe and the light pink socks!

As you all probably know, besides donating money for tsunami relief efforts in Japan, I also sent 38 pairs of socks for men, women, and children, along with some handwritten letters and toiletry items, to a newly-formed organization that aims to distribute these items to the displaced victims housed in temporary shelters in the northern parts of Japan.

This morning, Socks for Japan shared their first experience making a delivery to a couple shelters located in Ibaraki, who had cited an urgent need for socks and specially requested them.  The group also shared the photos they took of the destroyed towns and homes, damaged personal items, and the isolated survivors in the various shelters they visited.

From their account of the day:

Three ladies sat together on a blanket after receiving their socks, all three engrossed in reading the letters. They looked so happy and kept turning to each other to share what their letters said. They noticed us noticing them, and the eldest among them held her letter up and told us, “This is wonderful.”

Hand-writing 14 copies of this long letter took an awful long time…

But for the look on this woman’s face I would write 10,000 more.

It’s so amazing to be involved with a charity that actually does what it sets out to do, wholly and caringly – and provides an actual account of their work so there can be no misunderstandings about it.  Perhaps I shall never learn the names of these people…but I am so glad to have brightened their day in even the smallest way.

The write-up is incredibly moving, and hopefully puts to rest any criticisms that socks are neither needed nor wanted.

Read the Full Account of the Socks Delivery Here


Thank you to Socks for Japan, who have allowed me to help in such a tiny way!


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DIY Alexander Wang Stirrup Socks

runway photos: Marcio Madeira,; photo array by me.

Seen on the Spring 2010 runways (more than a year and a half ago, would you believe?) these stirrup socks, gaiters, or whatever you wanted to call them were the quintessential accessory for Alexander Wang‘s 2010 football-inspired sporty-girly aesthetic.  With a little hand-stitchery and some Stop Fraying sealant, they’re a breeze to make.

You Need:

*pair of knee-high socks

*marking chalk

*white 1/2″ wide soft, lightweight elastic

*matching thread & hand-sewing needle

*fabric scissors

*Aleene’s Stop Fraying fabric sealant


1. Try one  sock on, and mark where you want to cut off the toe.

Also mark the back of the sock at the widest points you want your cut-out to be…and at the lowest point you want it to reach.

2. Take off sock and cut off toe, straight across.  Draw a curve on the marks you made at the back of the sock in the previous step, and cut out along the curve.
  Cut the other sock in the exact same way.

3. Apply Stop Fraying to cut edges and allow to dry according to instructions.  (If you can use a sewing machine or overlocker, overlocking the edges will create a permanent, washable piece!  With the fabric sealant these are more special-occasion-only socks, and probably won’t stand up to much washing.)

4. Sew one end of elastic to one side of the cut part of the sock.  Try on sock again to see the fit, and stretch the elastic to the other side of the cut. Anchor elastic with your needle and take off the sock again.  Sew other side of elastic down.

5. Trim elastic.  Cut other piece of elastic the same length and sew both sides to the other sock.

Wear with a pair of clogs, mules, oxfords, sandals, or anything that acts as a straight-laced counterpart to this sporty legwear.

Happy DIY’ing!

*I actually wrote this tutorial for Foam Magazine online, in May 2010.  It unfortunately has been lost somewhere out on the Internet…if anyone has seen it, please let me know!  I also found another tutorial for these exact same stirrup socks, done by the fabulous Jazzi McG, long, loooong prior to me ever doing mine…which I was totally unaware of when Foam asked me to do a tutorial for these socks.  So sorry, Jazzi – you deserve the credit for first DIY!
**and thanks to reader Ejiro for reminding me to post this!


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