Review: Tabio socks (unnamed)

      I haven’t been doing socks review for some time and yes, it is a new brand for ilovehosiery and a Japanese one!

      Japanese craftsmanship has been regarded as among the best in the world in terms of quality.  Therefore, while I was in Japan, I look for Japanese made hosiery whenever I had the chance.  One pair of Tabio socks caught my eye.  It has prints of mountain resembling Mt. Fuji, a mountain I just climbed during my trip.  So I thought it would be great both as a souvenir and a review.

      A brief intro about the brand…  Tabio is a Japanese hosiery manufacturer and retailer.  It makes all kinds of hosiery for men, women and children.  The company was founded in 1968 by Naomasa Ochi.  Its mission is “to have people experience true comfort on a daily basis at a reasonable price.”  Today, Tabio is led by Katsuhiro Ochi (second generation) and have expanded globally.  In addition to Japan, you can find Tabio shops in China, France, Taiwan, the U.K. and the U.S.

Strengths & Weaknesses

⊕ Light, breathable and comfortable to wear.

⊗ Cuff loosen a bit after first machine wash.

Packaging & product description

      The packaging is very simple.  The socks are placed in a transparent plastic sleeve.  Metal clips were used to hold the socks together.  The specs and wash instructions are printed on a small tag, which is secured onto the socks with a thread.

Tabio Fuji Socks 02

      There was no product name on the packaging.  Nor was there product description on the tag.  I couldn’t find any info on the official website either.  However, I was told by the shop assistant that it is a limited edition.  After some research, I think it belongs to the Tabio Art, which is collaboration between the Brand and renowned artists.

Tabio Fuji Socks 03
Tabio Fuji Socks 04

Appearance & texture

      The socks has an opaque appearance yet relatively thin to the touch.  It is characterised by prints of a volcano-shaped mountain in light blue colour.  The top of the mountain is covered in white.  Just above the summit is a dot in bright red, which could either be the sun or the moon.  The foot of the mountain are printed with flowing stripes in deep blue, resembling that of the sea.  The pattern are stacked on top of each other from toe to cuff.  Pink with tiny white dots serve as the background.

Full moon on top of Mt. Fuji (photo taken by Noriaki Fukasawa).

      The texture are cottony and are very smooth.  The cuff measures 1.5cm wide and uses a different knitting to give extra elasticity.  The circumference of the cuff is 17cm when laid on a flat surface.  The toe section is not especially thickened for reinforcement.

      The composition is 65% cotton, 30% nylon and 5% polyurethane (i.e., elastane).

Tabio Fuji Socks 01
Tabio Fuji Socks 05
Tabio Fuji Socks 06

Size range

      The size I bought is 25-27cm.  Other sizes are perhaps available but I don’t have such information.

Colour

      I only saw this multi-coloured style in the shop.  Since there is no further info on the website, I can’t be sure if there are any other colours available.

Impression

FIT

      The fit was slightly loose.  Given my feet are 25.5cm long, and the size goes up to 27cm, I kind of expected this to happen.  Similarly, the envelopment was quite loose.  The cuff did give a firm grip on the lower calf.  However, it loosen a bit after first machine wash.

Tabio Fuji Socks 07
Tabio Fuji Socks 08
LOOK

      The look was great and I really liked it!  The red-blue colour combination are an easy match for my clothing and shoes.  It also coincides very well with both nude and dark colour tights.

      The print isn’t particularly clear when looked at a very close range.  Having said that, I doubt one would kneel down and stare at your sock at such range.  In addition, the colour didn’t fade after machine wash.

Tabio Fuji Socks 09
Tabio Fuji Socks 10
Tabio Fuji Socks 11
Tabio Fuji Socks 12
Tabio Fuji Socks 13
Tabio Fuji Socks 14
FEEL

      The texture felt smooth and comfortable.  The cuff firmly hugged the lower calf, but didn’t make the legs uncomfortable after wearing it the whole day.  It was quite thin, and thus quite breathable.  I think it suits very well for Spring/Autumn when it is not too cold.

Final words

      Such a good looking pair of socks and very comfortable to wear.  I assume it will be very difficult to buy the same pair of socks now, but Tabio has very interesting designs in its Tabio Arts section, which may interest you.

      I bought the pair for ¥2,000, which is around €16.53, £14.27 or USD$18.35.  If you are a foreigner and spend over ¥5,000 in a single transaction, you don’t have to pay tax.

Tabio Japan (Japanese)
Tabio Arts (Japanese)
Tabio U.K. (English)