Tag Archives: Design a Sock Contest

Where Does Inspiration Come From? We Asked Design-a-Sock Entrants!

One of the coolest things about Design-a-Sock Contest is the incredible variety of designs we get. They come from all over the world (84 countries and counting so far this year)! They come from people with vastly different life experiences and perspectives. And, of course, everyone has their own idea about what should go on the perfect sock.

We like to think about Design-a-Sock Contest as more than just a contest: it’s a global conversation about design. And this year, with less than a week to go to enter, we’re going to do something we’ve never done before. We’re going to show you some of the designs we’ve already received to give you a better idea of what people are saying.

We got in touch with five different people who sent us designs this year. Here are their designs, and here’s what they told us!

Carlee Shirts

What do you want the world to know about your sock design? 

Turtley Awesome by Carlee Shirts

The idea came from my pet tortoise, Alfie. He has a heart print on one of his shell plates and was a gift from my hubby for our 17th Wedding Anniversary, so we just had to name him after the tortoise in the love story Esio Trot by Roald Dahl.

Where does your inspiration come from? Who or what inspires you?

My kids, hubby, fellow roller derby girls with the Idaho Rebel Rollers, nature, the unique talents and creations of other artists.

What do you enjoy most about being creative? 

Seeing my ideas come to life.

What would your message be to someone who enjoys being creative but is nervous about sharing their art with the world? 

You have amazing gifts to share with the world! Take the leap! You have no idea how many people you can influence, affect, inspire, and make feel a part of something by sharing who you are.

Sarah Hussein

What do you want the world to know about your sock design?

While designing the socks I kept thinking about how to spread joy and happiness to people who might be interested in wearing it. I wanted to send a confident message to people who feel different and prefer to make special choices.

Who or what inspires you? Where does your inspiration come from?

Dogs and Bones by Sarah Hussein

My inspiration comes from many sources such as nature, animals, plants, and modern art. I am a painter who keep an eye out for very specific details. I am training my eyes to be better though through processes like meditation, reading art books, and taking my camera and my sketchbook with me everywhere.

What do you enjoy most about being creative?

The most interesting thing about the creative process is that I’m making a reflection of my own self through painting, designing, photography. I feel good when I express myself through these artistic media. I love challenging myself on every single piece I’m working on. I love telling myself that every piece must be my masterpiece. Art refreshes my soul.

Under the Sea by Sarah Hussein

How can you inspire creativity in other people?

I try to inspire people through my work by making the audience feel my soul through my art. I would like them to feel something different, something that hugs their hearts softly, something they may know or not but definitely would touch them.

What would your message be to someone who enjoys being creative but is nervous about sharing their art with the world? What do you think would help make people feel more included?

Absolutely all creative people have the same issue. All designers feel shy. Even the famous and great artists get nervous. They can’t help thinking of others’ judgements. So my advice is to share your art with the world because without sharing you will never get anywhere. Just do it, share your art, share your soul.

Carla Puebla

What do you want the world to know about your sock design?

When it comes to sock designs, most people think about famous paintings or food or animal patterns, but science and biology can be fascinating too. White blood cells (Leucocytes) are quite interesting since there are many different types and they have multiple functions. I thought about adding some red blood cells (Erythrocytes), but it’d draw attention from the lesser-known leucocytes. But mainly, what I want to show is that people who take an interest in these specific subjects are not alone. Science and our own cells can be beautiful too, in their own unique way. 

Where does your inspiration come from? Who or what inspires you?

I’m currently studying Medicine, and I was inspired by a Histology class I attended. It opened a whole new world of creative possibilities, since you can use different stains to highlight different aspects of a cell. For example, if you were to stain the cells with Hematoxylin and Eosin, leucocytes would be pink without much contrast. Which is very different than what you would get if you used the Romanowsky stain. The actual design is based on a May Grumwald Giemsa stain from a peripheral blood smear.

Mi-Toe-Sis by Carla Puebla

What do you enjoy most about being creative?

I’d say that the best part about being creative is the freedom that it implies. In the case of sock designs, instead of looking for something similar to what I would like, I myself am actually doing it. In that way, I don’t really have to wait until someone does it. 

How can you inspire creativity in other people?

I think looking at peoples’ ideas can be inspiring. I would have never thought about designing a pattern with cells if I hadn’t seen the cell slides paintings. So, it’s just a matter of recognizing potential among the normal objects that we see daily.

What would your message be to someone who enjoys being creative but is nervous about sharing their art with the world?

 I’d say to not be afraid to show it to others. Sure, some people might say that they don’t particularly enjoy your art, but it is not a tailored-made creation for someone. People have different styles and that’s where the beauty of art resides: in diversity. There will always be someone that supports you. At least there is a mathematical certainty about this. But even if at first it doesn’t succeed, sharing your art enables you to improve based on constructive criticism. 

What do you think would help make people feel more included?

I think that people would feel more included if we accepted that there are different points of view and perspectives on art, and there is not a “correct” way to do it. If we were shown different styles, it would encourage those with unusual techniques or ideas to share their creations and continue the cycle.

Michelle Dooley

What do you want the world to know about your sock design?

As to specific socks:

I thought a menacing plant would look interesting on a sock. What was the name of that movie about the plant that ate people? The Little Sock of Horrors – no, that wasn’t it – well, it is now!

Feeling so tired today. I have to work my way through this thick pile of research about comets for a column I’m writing. Also want to think about some sock ideas. So much to do. Need a little pep in my step. Time to hit the coffee ‘cause I’m practically – Comet toes!

Reachable Stars by Michelle Dooley

My tights have had a few “ladders” over the years. I thought a ladder would look interesting on a sock, but where would the ladder go? I played with a lot of possibilities, then suddenly though of an old song about chasing the “Impossible Dream.” It’s good to aim high, but why shouldn’t some goals be accessible – let’s celebrate “Reachable Stars.”

Who or what inspires you? Where does your inspiration come from?

Over the years, I’ve had a few different careers: doing shopping mall market research (“Excuse me, ma’am, could I ask you a few questions about the deodorant you are wearing today?”); writing technical reports about photocopiers and facsimile units (What can I find to say that’s interesting about different toner colours and print capacities?); developing product ideas for The Franklin Mint (purveyors of fine collector plates, Jackie Kennedy dolls, and other dustables); and, most recently, teaching World Cultures as an adjunct at a local university (an increasingly challenging job).

How did I get here?

Little Sock of Horrors by Michelle Dooley

Growing up, I went to eight schools in four countries (my father was an international business executive). At each new school, I watched the other kids, then tried to be like them, to meld into the new group, and “belong.” It took many years to realize that wasn’t necessary.

Eventually, I figured out that each person has an individual tale to tell. Each story is unique. That’s what makes it interesting. Tell your own story!

What do you enjoy most about being creative?

What is my superpower? I wear thick glasses. It gives me a different perspective on the world: when I mis-read a word or an object, and realize my mistake, it can turn into a new idea. I also can’t draw very well and I’m not that good with technology. I struggled with that for a long time before suddenly being inspired to cut simple designs out of coloured paper. My biggest challenge has been to find a way to get what’s in my head, out where people can see it.

Comet Toes by Michelle Dooley

What would your message be to someone who enjoys being creative but is nervous about sharing their art with the world?

Don’t take yourself too seriously. Look for the funny side of your particular predicament: you will feel better and so will everyone else around you – and they’ll probably then share a similar experience they’ve had, which will bring you together.

Not every idea is a good one. That’s why it’s good to have a lot of them. Where do ideas come from? Everywhere! Talk to people. Read stuff. Look at stuff. Learn stuff. Remember stuff. Always be curious about everything. The more ideas you have in your head, the more likely your mind is to make interesting connections.

Haley Tebo

What do you want the world to know about your sock design?

It sort of depends on which design specifically, but in general they were made with love and passion by a young graphic designer!

Where does your inspiration come from? 

Sweet Treats by Haley Tebo

After researching the Sock it to Me catalog and competitive market, I created some unique designs inspired by the Sock it to Me aesthetic. Your bold and creative designs inspired me to be experimental and unafraid in my own designs, from a fish riding a bike to wildly silly geometric turtles.

Who or what inspires you?

I’m inspired by people and works that make me feel something. Awe, motivation, and inspiration, yes, but also things that are relatable to the human experience. I aspire to be an excellent storyteller and visual problem solver, so Rebecca Sugar is one of the people that I look up to. Her show Steven Universe has inspired me because of its success in world-building and evoking emotion through art, music, and cinematography. The Steven Universe movie just premiered and I think that many viewers can find something to relate to that makes the viewing experience special and personal. It’s something that I would be ecstatically proud to be part of someday. Given that many “Cool Girls” that are part of the Sock it to Me community also advocate for LGBTQ+ issues and body positivity, I think that we can all appreciate the strides that Rebecca has made to address these in her work.

Carp-e Diem by Haley Tebo

What do you enjoy most about being creative?

I enjoy the processes of critical thinking and creative storytelling in graphic design. I am so grateful to have found my passion in this creative field that allows for a wide variety of collaborators, media, and opportunities.

How can you inspire creativity in other people?

Creativity can be found in more than just art. It can take the form of resourcefulness, thoughtfulness, and unique experiences. Wherever it’s found or however you express it, there really is no way to fail at being creative.

Bark Print by Haley Tebo

What would your message be to someone who enjoys being creative but is nervous about sharing their art with the world?

I encourage individuals to explore their own path to confidence and creativity. For example, my sister does studio art, is her own boss, and creates as inspiration comes. I, however, was timidly creative until I found graphic design because it allows me to handle decision making with guidelines and research to support my creative process. Find your own passion and comfort zones and you will find a community you enjoy sharing with!

Catching Up with Previous Design-a-Sock Contest Winners

Design-a-Sock Contest 2019 kicks off on September 3rd. Maybe you’re considering entering? Maybe half of you wants to enter, while the other half isn’t so sure? We get it. It’s normal to feel some degree of self-doubt. It comes with the territory when you’re thinking about sending your art out to be evaluated.

We want to introduce you to four people. They’re people just like you. They came up with a great idea for a sock, ignored self-doubt and bravely submitted their designs. And now they shall forever be known as… Design-a-Sock Contest Winners!

We recently caught up with these sock-designing dynamos to tell us about their experience–and asked if they have any pointers for anyone thinking about entering this year.

Alina Chetcuti
Breah Morgan
Grant Thackray
Katie Bryant

Continue reading Catching Up with Previous Design-a-Sock Contest Winners

Design-a-Sock 2017 Winners!

2017 Design-a-Sock Winners

Thank you to all participants, whether you sent inspired drawings or voted on your favorites, for making 2017 Design-a-Sock Contest so great!

Now, let’s meet the artists behind the designs:

2017-Design-a-Sock-Winner-First-Place1st PlaceKatherine

Katherine comes from Maryland and is currently studying mechanical engineering in New Jersey. Art is her favorite hobby between classes, either filling her wall with drawings or being the artist on her friends video game projects. When she’s back home, she helps run a sports camp, makes her own costumes, bakes, and live with her boxer dog. She has a growing collection of colorful socks, and they’ve been a great help in making a good first impression.

2017-Design-a-Sock-Winner-SecondPlace2nd Place—Naomi

As a 22 year old student from Vancouver B.C, I am currently working towards becoming a graphic designer. Ive always had a passion for art and am constantly drawing or painting on my spare time. The world of Graphic design was new to me but once I enrolled in it at school I fell in love. This was the first time I ever participated in the Sock it to Me design contest, or any design contest in that matter, and I loved how creative you could get! It was so much fun seeing my idea come to life and I can’t believe other people liked it as well!

My online portfolio: www.naomiokada.com 

2017-Design-a-Sock-Winner-ThirdPlace3rd PlaceIsabel

My name is Isabel, and I am a 13-year old artist. I’ve been making art for nearly 10 years now, and I don’t think it will ever die out. I’m very ambitious; I’m always working to improve, and always afraid to lose. I’ve won several contests before, but for me to win a place in such a huge event is a huge thing for me! I enjoy playing video games, watching cartoons, and spending time with my fellow geek friends. I also listen to a lot of music. Possibly too much…?

Design-a-Sock on KOIN News!

KOIN News came to visit Sock It to Me headquarters to talk Design-a-Sock Contest with us! Take a peek behind the scenes of the contest and hear why we love putting it on each year.

Today is the last day to enter for the 2017 contest. Our deadline has been extended to 11:59 PM PDT. Don’t forget to come back and vote on the final entries on October 9th.

Watch the KOIN interview here.

KOIN News Design-a-Sock Interview

KOIN News Design-a-Sock Interview Entry

KOIN News Design-a-Sock Contest Interview Entry Stack


GeekDad: September 2017

GeekDad thinks our socks are almost as good as money:

“Now through September 30, Sock It To Me is inviting fans and artists from around the world to submit a unique sock design for a chance to win up to $2,000 in cash and 15 free pairs of SITM socks–which are almost as good as money.”

That’s a pretty good compliment! We also don’t mind that they’re telling their fans about our Design-a-Sock Contest, which also gives you the chance to turn your idea into a real, live sock.

Check out their full post here.

Get an entry form to our Design-a-Sock Contest here.