“Everything I do is words,” said pop artist Baron Von Fancy, at the showroom for Fun Socks during a preview of the brand’s fall collections.

As part of the Fun Socks fall offering, Baron put his signature touch on four unisex sock styles and a baseball cap, with phrases like, “I Feel You Babe,” “Wear Me Out,” “Just for Fun” and “I Can’t Grow Up.”

The “Wear Me Out” sock. 

It’s only season two for Fun Socks, a division of United Legwear & Apparel Co., and the brand is already stepping out by adding collections and collaborating with artists. New for fall 2018 are an athletic collection, a kids collection, extended size options for men’s including a “king size” and the partnership with Von Fancy, whose signature style is to use words and phrases on billboards, canvases as well as applying his words on jackets, shirts, backpacks and mobile phone cases, among other items. He’s also done paintings and cartoon characters and he recently worked on a billboard on Bowery and Canal Street in lower Manhattan that reads: “Coming in a little hot,” to evoke how people often feel driving through Manhattan traffic. One of his more provocative works was with Uber on shirts that read “Ride Me.”

Making it playful, whimsical and colorful is a big part of the business philosophy of Isaac E. Ash, founder, president and chief executive officer of United Legwear & Apparel LLC, a New York-based firm which designs, manufactures, markets and sells legwear, bodywear, apparel and accessories for such brands as Puma, Champion and Skechers, and launched Fun Socks for spring 2018. “It comes down to having passion for what you do, having the right people and having fun doing what you do every day,” said Ash, whose been in socks throughout his career. “I happen to love socks.”

Isaac E. Ash and Baron Von Fancy 

Ash and the Baron, his real name is Gordon Stevenson, were among the scores of people at the Fun Socks showroom this month for the fall 2018 preview/party. “Men and women are looking for new ways to be sassy and express themselves and socks can be a way,” said Karen Giberson, president of the Accessories Council, among the guests. “Fun Socks has high-quality designs and intricate patterns,” Giberson said.
Also present was Rita O’Brien, vice president of licensing and marketing at United Legwear & Apparel, who was helpful in getting the Baron to collaborate with Fun Socks, though Ash had been an admirer of the Baron’s work for some time. It happened by fate, when five years ago, online, O’Brien saw the Baron’s exhibit at Colette in Paris, which is now closed, and greatly admired his work. “I Instagrammed him and he Instagrammed me back. I told him I was thinking of getting a tattoo with the word ‘bisous’ which is French for kisses which he used for a painting. He told me if you get that tattoo, he’d give me the painting. I did, and he did. It’s hanging in my daughter’s room.”

According to Fun Socks executives, the fall 2018 line is double the size of the spring collection; the new athletic styles come in crew and quarter-crew silhouettes with arch support, cushioning, breathable mesh and embroidered patches; kids socks are in three sizes for ages 3 to 12, and most of the kids style are “direct takedowns from the adult styles.” While stores specializing in socks are rare, United Legwear & Apparel Co. last spring launched two Fun Socks stores, at 436 West Broadway in the SoHo section of Manhattan, and a 600-square-foot shop in Venice, Calif.

From the Fun Socks kids collection.  StyleShoots