Design Inspiration: The White Stripe Sock by Fortis Green

The Fortis Green ‘White Stripe’ sock offers a contemporary take on the classic ‘le tricolor’ French colour palette. The inspiration for this dress sock design comes from the work of French artist Paul Colin and his iconic Art Deco poster from 1937, advertising the Compagnie Générale Transatlantique ‘French line’ shipping company.


Paul Colin (1892-1985) is now considered a master of the modern school of poster art, first gaining notoriety for his 1925 poster for the Revue Negre, which helped to launch the career of his mistress, the iconic stage performer Josephine Baker.  

Baker’s 1925 success as a star of the Folies Bergere coincided with the Exposition des Arts Decoratifs, which gave birth to the Art Deco movement and a renewal of interest in exotic, non-western forms of art, which the African American Baker personified.

Even at the time, there was recognition that the interwar period was the ‘golden age’ of graphic art and illustration, though Paul Colin continued to work for over forty years, creating not only over 1400 posters but also numerous sets and costumes for the French theatre. Very Art Deco at the outset, his style evolved over time to become highly personal and impossible to categorise. The accuracy of his portraits and the evocative force of his posters marked him as a master of visual communication whose work remains relevant and fresh today.

The Fortis Green 'white stripe' sock

Paul Colin Art Deco posters of Josephine Baker circa 1925 and 1929

Paul Colin's posters of Josephine Baker circa 1925 and 1929