Unlike most clothing start-ups, Clay Active didn't find a template and have our brand printed onto it. Instead, we found an Australian manufacturer who could help us build a product that filled our brief:
A high quality performance-driven sport sock that looked stylish.
(We didn't realise how hard a task that actually was, especially for a start-up new in the game.)
So we got to work with our manufacturer in Melbourne.
As a stylish sock the early samples weren't great - they looked terrible. However we found that they were really comfortable to wear, they lasted well even with improper washing and care (which we don't recommend) and most of all, we found them great for wearing to the gym, running and tennis.
They were a solid athletic sock. Thankfully.
The final lot of samples, which are the finished Clay Active Sport Socks, got it right.
Why are they the perfect sport sock?
Firstly, the terry cushioning (terry is that loopy thread you see on towels which makes everything so soft). We specifically wanted as cushiony terry as possible, and we wanted it to wrap generously around the toe and extend high up the achilles. That means they're naturally going to last long and can take more abrasion. It also means they're softer, obviously, which is great for exercising casually or competitively.
We also wanted ventilation mesh. This one we thought was going to be a gimmick - because, really, if your shoe is covering the top of your foot there won't be a lot of airflow. But...I wear Clay socks with casual shoes that are a bit looser, I wear them with boots and I don't wear shoes while I'm working out at the gym. During those times, I can really notice the lighter, cooler and more aerated feel of the sock.
The other day I wore a major brand sport sock to the gym. It didn't have the features that the Clay sock has and it's still a really cool sock, but I noticed my foot feeling a bit warm and swampy. The reason the Clay sock is so good for sport is because it's heavy in material where you want it, and light on material where you want breathability and comfort.
In the end we think we've filled our brief and created a top level athletic sock. We think it's great for all sports including running, gym, tennis, basketball, football, league or rugby training.
As well as that Clay Active Sport Socks come in fun, fashionable colours. You can wear them to work all day, wear them in a smart business outfit, wear them to a cafe or to the shops etc.
If you've got Clay socks, send us an email and let us know what you think of them!