Australian socks

It’s the middle of winter in the Southern Hemisphere. I was in Melbourne, Australia recently where I bought two pairs of long socks to keep warm.

I bought my socks at the Queen Victoria Market in Melbourne’s central business district. Also called the Queen Vic Market, it is located at the corner of Victoria and Elizabeth Street. The Queen Vic Market is named after Queen Victoria who ruled from 1837 – 1901. The Queen Vic Market was officially opened on 20 March 1878. The market’s current location is on the site of a cemetery, called the Old Melbourne Cemetery. The cemetery opened in 1837, but later closed in 1854 when it was full. Ten thousand people were buried in this cemetery. In 1917, the market extended into the cemetery site. Over 900 bodies were exhumed and re-interred in other cemeteries, but thousands of bodies are still buried beneath the sheds and current car park of Queen Vic Market.

Façade of the historic Queen Victoria market in Melbourne, Australia (photo by Emily Gan).

Façade of the historic Queen Victoria market in Melbourne, Australia (photo by Emily Gan).

The Queen Victoria Market is the largest open air market in the Southern Hemisphere. It covers an area of around 17 acres, or over 2 city blocks. It is open 5 days a week (closed on Mondays and Wednesdays). Allow yourself a few hours, or even a whole day, if you want to see everything.

The market sells almost everything you can think of – fresh fruit, vegetables, meat, seafood, specialty and deli foods. There are also different precincts selling non-food items, like handmade arts and crafts, clothes, jewellery, shoes and socks and also souvenirs. (though I found that a lot of souvenirs that say ‘Australia’ on them aren’t actually made in Australia). If you want to be sure something is made in Australia, look for a green triangular-shaped sticker with a yellow kangaroo on it.

Australian made argyle socks. Note the green triangular sticker with the yellow kangaroo on it, the made-in-Australia sticker (Photo by Chang Shih Yen).

Australian made over-the-knee argyle socks. Note the green triangular sticker with the yellow kangaroo on it, the made-in-Australia sticker (Photo by Chang Shih Yen).

I bought two pairs of over-the-knee white socks, one with music notes on them, and a pair of argyle socks. Argyle refers to a pattern shaped, like diamonds. Argyle originated in Scotland when it appeared on socks of the Scottish Campbell clan, who were native to County Argyll in Western Scotland. For a preppy look, wear anything argyle, like argyle socks or an argyle vest.

Over-the-knee Australian socks. Music to my feet (Photo by Chang Shih Yen)

Over-the-knee Australian socks. Music to my feet (Photo by Chang Shih Yen)

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