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Eastchester Entrepreneurs Want To 'Sock It To You'

Robert Baldino, right, and Mickey Abbatiello, left, of Balitello Performance Dress Socks, based in Eastchester. Photo Credit: Submitted
Balitello Performance Dress Socks are USA-made. Photo Credit: Submitted
An assortment of socks by Balitello Performance Dress Socks. Photo Credit: Submitted
The Balitello team: left to right: Mickey Abbatiello, Vincent Branciforti, Cory Wade, and Rob Baldino. Photo Credit: Submitted

EASTCHESTER, N.Y. -- They haven't solved the dilemma of losing socks in the washing machine -- yet -- but Rob Baldino and Mickey Abbatiello have come up with a solution for more comfortable, better-looking dress socks for men that don't slide down your leg or fade in color.

The two, former college athletes, said they always wondered why their dress socks were never as comfortable as the performance socks they wore in rugby and basketball. And so, after much research, they launched Balitello Performance Dress Socks -- fashionable socks with extra padding on the heel and toe. The socks also include better arch support and breathable microfiber material  -- along with that all important stay in place technology.

The socks, said Baldino, strike the unique balance between fun performance and stylish-professional.

The two Eastchester residents, friends since first grade, spent a lot of time listening to people and their sock complaints and then did research to "transcend and evolve" the modern day dress sock to something functional.

"Everything you thought was wrong in a sock has been fixed," said Baldino of his USA-made product.

The fact that the two entrepreneurs are social media savvy -- they have well over 27,000 followers on Instagram, Facebook YouTube, Snapchat and Pinterest --  has helped the brand, which launched in 2015 under a mashup of their last names.

They partnered with sports and fashion influencers such as Henrik Lundqvist of the New York Rangers, Cory Wade from America's Next Top Model, Ice T, Chef Dante Giannini founder of Farm2Fork and Jimmy Buffett’s private chef (he's from Eastchester!), and New York Giants players Big Blue, among others, and watched sales soar among their key demographic, those ages 25 to 35.

The two also started a sock club along the lines of Birchbox and Dollar Shave Club, which they say helps their customers stay on trend and give them ease of shopping.

Along with their socks --  their New York City skyline ranks among the most popular -- they also do custom work for brands and events including Lionsgate Entertainment, WeBleedBlue, Citi Bike, and the Movember Foundation.

As for where the company is going? Said Baldino: "Our goal is to partner with more influencers and grow the heck out of our socks."

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