Everyone’s got a dad, and almost all cultures pick a day on which to celebrate them. Different cultures celebrate in different ways, some stooped in ancient tradition and others driven by modern consumerism.

Here are three of our favourites:

  1. Father’s Day in Germany is called Männertag or Herrentag (“men’s day” or “gentlemen’s day”) and it is traditional for groups of men to go hiking, dragging behind them carts of beer, wine and other provisions. This is rooted in the Ascension Day processions of Christians in the area in the 18th Century, when local men would be ferried by cart to the town square where he with the most offspring would be awarded a large ham. Although the religious component was lost over the years, the practice continued, morphing into what many a German gent uses today as a great excuse to get drunk with his mates!

  2. In Thailand, Father’s Day is celebrated on the same day as the king’s birthday (similarly, Mother’s Day is on the queen’s). The birthday of the current king, Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX), is on December 5 and that of the current queen, Sirikit, is on August 12. Traditionally, Thais celebrate by giving their patriarch a canna flower. People also wear yellow to show respect for the king (yellow being the colour for Monday, the day on which he was born). Many congregate in Sanam Luang park in front of the palace in Bangkok for his annual speech, lighting candles and declaring their faith. The ceremony became popular in the 1980s as Prime Minister Prem Tinsulanonda worked to promote the royal family and it continues to be observed nationwide to this day.

  3. The French have celebrated fathers day since the Middle Ages, when it was celebrated on March 19, the day of Saint Joseph (the foster-father of Jesus). This ancient religious festival was slowly forgotten, but a day to celebrate fatherhood was reimagined and reinstated in the 20th century as a flamboyant marketing scheme by a Breton brand of lighters. Flaminaire sold the first gasoline lighters in 1908. They were luxury items in their day and, since most men smoked, quickly became a traditional gift on Father’s Day, or Fête des Pères as it’s called in France. This new, commercialised celebration lands on the third Sunday in June – the same day as in the USA, UK and many other countries around the world – and was institutionalised in France in 1952. Although it’s doubtful many fathers still receive fancy lighters on Fête des Pères these days, gift-giving remains standard and children now often make paper ties and bowties to give as presents. People give roses too, which are a symbol of Father’s Day in France with red ones given to the living and white ones placed on the graves of the dead.

If the above traditions seem a little odd for your dad, maybe he’ll simply enjoy relaxing at home in front of the finale of the US Open. Or, if he’s been especially good this year, maybe he deserves something extra special – like membership to most luxury sock club in the world! Either way, we each only get one Dad – so make sure he feels special this Father’s Day.


Written by Dominic Dowbekin.
Photography by Nathalie Thery

Each quarter, we chat to some of the industry’s leading talent. From established influencers to that new hidden talent, we arrange a little tête-à-tête to suss them out.

Maurice T. Greig

Suppliers get left out of the picture all too often, but the Greig & Greig Partnership plays a major role in achieving Socky’s mission of sourcing and delivering the very finest socks to its members wherever they are in the world. So, this quarter, we caught up with Maurice…

By Nathalie Thery.

Maurice T. Greig

I had only met Maurice once before, though was greeted upon my return to his charming Chelsea studio with the warmest of smiles and a great fuss over whether I would prefer tea or coffee. I had dropped by to interview Maurice about his deep experience of the luxury retail industry and came prepped with notes and questions. Instead, I got a friendly conversation, and a delightfully insightful one too.

As a boy, Maurice attended an English school in Rome before moving to Dundee to study for his masters degree in Civil Engineering and Economics. As happens to many of us, young and unsure of what we wanted to do, he soon realised it wasn’t the life for him (one presumes he refers to both Civil Engineering and Dundee here). And all the better for us too, as after working for brands like Jaeger, Dunhill, Laura Ashley and Dawson International, Maurice went on to establish The Greig & Greig Partnership with his brother in ’94, Casa Italia in ’98 and Hardy & Parsons in ’02

The Greig & Greig Partnership is dedicated to introducing new niche brands and products into the UK, Italy and Ireland as well as into key markets, such as Japan, France, Germany and the US. Maurice focused initially on the UK and Irish markets for Italian companies whilst his brother Robert, who is based in Milan, concentrated on the Italian market for British and Irish brands. Today The Greig & Greig Partnership’s UK operation represents a port-folio of brands from the USA and UK as well as Italy.

I started picking his brain to find out what makes him tick, and he pressed on the importance of good craftsmanship and quality control. Hardy & Parsons make superbly crafted belts and leather goods using the best English vegetable-dyed bridle-butt leather with solid brass, nickel, pewter or alloy fittings. Every item he makes is carefully inspected and no item ever goes out if it isn’t perfect.

He says mass-production “takes the waiting out of wanting” and throws quality control out the window, but he is beginning to see a shift in the industry and a return to customers demanding quality over convenience. The online mar-ket place is one cause of this shift, though more important is an ideological change in how we perceive industrialisation. “We are in the era to watch the rise of bespoke fashions.

Maurice T. Greig

”Our conversation leads to socks (of course), and for Maurice comfort is paramount. “Long socks are the only way to go”, he says emphatically, “they hold up, don’t gather at the ankles and keep hairy legs hidden from view”. He feels there is a need to educate people about long socks, and we couldn’t agree more!

I left the studio chuckling at Maurice’s stories of his beloved bell-bottoms in the sixties, of an incident involving Cary Grant in the Jaeger store many years ago and about his iconic quick release belt. I couldn’t implore you more to make the trip and hear for yourself.