Get the latest updates as we post them — right on your browser

. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Communist Socks Run Off Shelves

Looking for the perfect Revolution Day gift? Try a pair of socks bearing the Communist Party logo, which recently appeared in the Krasnopresnensky department store.

"All sold out," said shop assistant Yelena Marandova, standing near a shelf laden with Italian and even Syrian-made socks.

"We have a big selection, so most people paid no attention to the Communist Party socks," she said. "But some who saw the logo bought them specially for their communist friends."

There were only 20 pairs of the stylish gray cotton footwear, which sold for a mere 6,600 rubles apiece. They mysteriously turned up among a large batch of socks made for Moscow's 850th jubilee, which will be celebrated next year.

"It was some kind of mix-up -- we didn't even order them!" said deputy sales director Raisa Kulikova, adding that the Moscow jubilee consignment was produced by the shop's long-time partner, the Azhur joint stock company, once a leading Soviet hosiery producer located just outside Moscow.

"It seems very strange to me because I am used to more monumental party advertisement," said Communist Party Duma deputy Nikolai Korsakov in a telephone interview Tuesday.

While the socks produced a variety of reactions, their appearance on the store's shelves caused particular confusion at their place of origin.

"Those socks were not for sale; we made them as samples with various party logos to promote our goods on the local market," said Azhur general director Lev Subbotin.

Other party socks produced by Azhur bore the names and symbols of Vladimir Zhirinovsky's Liberal Democratic Party of Russia, the pro-government Our Home Is Russia, and even the Beer Lovers' Party.

Subbotin said the novelty noski were made and presented to Russian State Duma deputies in response to parliamentarian-businessman Konstantin Borovoi's recent attack on the Russian textile industry, in which he said it was incapable of producing anything but the satin underwear once so popular with Soviet men.

"Our socks are works of art and we are proud of them," Subbotin said.