Socks and sandals. Two things that should never go together. Or should they? What was once a punishable offense, at least in the realm of social status, is now a bonafide way of flexing an eye for good-looking footwear. There are millions of socks and millions of sandals, but the two you choose signal a ton about your style. And although going commando — aka sock-free — proves best in the most stifling of weather, warmer days almost always give way to cooler evenings, and, plus, who doesn't want to wear socks and sandals well into fall, too?

As far as styles go, sure, you could go off the deep end and match extravagant slides (maybe Rick Owens x Birkenstock) with equally flashy socks (perhaps hopefully not Off-White), but the more nuanced your pairings the more polished you'll appear. Simply put, you'll look less like you wandered away from the weight room and more like you know something others don't.

Beyond careful consideration as to whether the ones you wear are washed and match, there are a few more rules for really pulling off this look: skip low-pile, dress, silk, ankle and no-show socks. Ultra-thin ones just don't look right slipped into a sandal. Ones with overt branding across the toe or up the Achilles don't either. Also, skip the gimmicky socks you got for Christmas — and especially the ones you were gifted for playing your part as a groomsman.

Here, we're mixing made-in-Japan socks with lesser-seen Birkenstocks; stylish Suicoke sandals with tie-dyed types; Marni sandals with muted green knits — you get the gist.

Sandals: Birkenstock

Socks: Beams Plus, Wythe New York, Kapital

Sandals: Suicoke

Socks: Anonymous Ism, Flagstuff, Stussy

Sandals: Yuketen

Socks: The Elder Statesman, Harvest & Mill, Mr P.

Sandals: Birkenstock

Socks: Human Made, Rototo, Howlin'

Sandals: Marni

Socks: Gap, Arvin Goods, WTAPS

Sandals: Frescobol Carioca

Socks: John Elliott, Wacko Maria, American Trench