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National Lost Sock Memorial Day, celebrated annually on May 9, honors all the socks that are no longer with us. Where did they go? We are not certain but what we do know is that losing one sock of a perfectly-matched pair is a wide-spread phenomenon. So much so that we have a day on which to honor those socks we have loved and lost.
History of National Lost Sock Memorial Day
The origin of National Lost Sock Memorial Day is as big a mystery as the whereabouts of the socks the day is meant to memorialize. But socks have been around for centuries and it’s clear Americans love their socks. In 2018, in the US alone, we purchased over $11 billion in socks. Most men wear socks every day — including those particularly fashionable guys who wear socks with sandals.
The sock industry continues to grow in sales and expand in variety. Gone are the days of the one-color, one-style sock. Today, socks serve multiple purposes and are manufactured to perform based on need. Of course, the dressy trouser sock in neutral colors exists for professional or fancy occasions but the markets for fun and functional socks are making a name for themselves. Themed graphic socks are trendier for the modern, less casual work environment.
With each American having an ever-growing sock drawer, the odds of a paired sock losing its mate increases. In a recent survey of 2,000 people, it was determined the average person loses 1.3 socks each month! That’s a lot of socks every year — over 15 per person, per year. So you can see how this universally hits home and causes us all great distress when a sock goes missing.
Today, we stand together to pay tribute to our dearly departed socks. We offer some clever ways to honor our lost socks and help those surviving socks press on.
National Lost Sock Memorial Day timeline
The first known socks are made from matted animal hair.
The first automatic clothes dryer to be patented in the United States is by George T. Sampson and his design is used until the introduction of electric- and gas dryers.
The brain trust at Omni Calculator, a Polish company dedicated to solving the world's problems through math, solves five million math problems per month — one of them is the Lost Sock Calculator.
Upon learning that socks are the #1 requested item by homeless shelters, Randy Goldberg and David Heath founds Bombas, an apparel company that donates one pair of socks to the homeless for every pair purchased.
National Lost Sock Memorial Day FAQs
Where should I look for my missing socks?
A few places to check before counting your socks as missing: someone else’s sock drawer; stuck to another piece of clothing in the hamper or the dryer; under the bed; inside the washer drum; or beside, behind, or beneath your washer and dryer set.
Is dryer lint the desecrated remains of socks?
This would seem to be the most logical explanation but, unfortunately, this is strictly a myth.
What are some cool ways to not lose socks?
If you, like most, find yourself with many single socks, try pinning them together before putting them in the wash or wash your socks in a mesh laundry bag.
Ways to Celebrate National Lost Sock Memorial Day
Clean out your sock drawers
The first step is to know how many singles you have. If you are throwing your socks aimlessly into a drawer, or multiple drawers, it’s time to take a little inventory and see how bad the damage actually is.
Build a single sock station
A must-have feature for your laundry room is a missing sock station. Paint a small piece of wood whatever fun color you’d like. Glue several clothespins to it to attach single socks. Decorate your sign by writing: “Single and Looking!”
Give socks as a gift
You don’t have to wait until Christmas to give each family member a pair of socks! No, socks are a fitting gift year-round due to their many unique styles today. Try John’s Crazy Socks for cool themes and customizable socks that fit any personality. Plus, they donate 5% of their profits to the Special Olympics.
5 Fun Things To Do With Single Socks
Put potpourri in a lonely sock and seal it with a rubber band — this works well in a closet, drawer, car, under the sink cabinet, or in any other spots that need some freshening up!
Make can and bottle koozies
Koozies are useful to have on hand when you need to keep your drinks cold or to protect your hands from hot drinks — it’s best to go with bright colored and graphic socks when making koozies.
Make cat toys
Fill one sock with material (including other single socks), catnip, crinkly material (mylar), or a squeaky — tie it at the end and let your cat play for hours!
Make sock puppets
Sock puppets are a classic toy loved by all and it’s so much fun to have puppet shows with your final products — use yarn for hair, markers to draw, or craft wiggly eyes and other similar embellishments to make your cast of sock characters.
Make ice-pack covers
No one wants to have an ice pack directly on their skin so Single socks make the perfect ice pack cover — depending on the size of your ice pack, you can turn the sock inside out, slide the ice pack into the sock and then fold over the extra sock material so that the pretty side of the sock is now showing.
WHY WE LOVE NATIONAL LOST SOCK MEMORIAL DAY
We love a happy ending
Everyone loves a happy ending, especially when it involves one of our favorite pairs of socks being found. So, yes, we hold out for the lost ones to be reunited eventually.
Socks keep our feet healthy
Socks are comfortable, warm, cozy, and keep our feet healthy. Going sockless can lead to sweaty, smelly, blistered, and cracked feet. If you are experiencing foot issues such as these, it may be time to try on a new pair of socks.
We love cozy feet
You can never have too many pairs of socks. This tends to be true simply because we wear them so often, even to bed, and you should wash each pair after one wear. For those of us who wear socks almost every day, this adds up to several pairs needed. National Lost Sock Memorial Day reminds us to take stock of our socks.
National Lost Sock Memorial Day dates