Monday, December 5, 2011

The Comeback of Pantyhose?

No matter what you call them -- stockings, pantyhose, or tights -- wearing old school hosiery is a fashion faux pas for most gals I know. Don't get me wrong, I love a good black opaque tight. But once you head into sheer or shimmery territory (or anything called "Suntan"), you might as well be walking those L'eggs back into the 80s. Sure, we all remember a very glamorous time when our permed mothers rocked a 'hose/skirt suit combo like nobody's business. But times have changed. And none of us have gone near stockings since Homecoming '98.

Until today, I haven't given stockings much thought. But I received a text from one of my BFF's asking: Am I supposed to wear stockings to a black-tie winter wedding? Are stockings cheesy?

What's a girl to do? Freeze and go barelegged? Look too casual in black opaques? Or risk her rep in the name of warmth and wear nude stockings?

Naturally, I turned to Google and typed, "is it lame to wear tights to a wedding?" One of the first links that popped up was this Forbes article, The Great Pantyhose Debate of 2012. Yes, now we are talking! Although there was no black-tie wedding advice, I do agree with the writer that sometimes the wrong shade can make you look like a Hooters waitress. Upon further research, here's what I found to help guide my friend:
  • Kate Middleton wears nude stockings. According to the Telegraph newspaper of London, "Tan colored tights are enjoying a fashion renaissance led by younger women ranging from the Duchess of Cambridge and her sister, Pippa Middleton, to Cheryl Cole and Carla Bruni." So, there's that...
  • L’eggs, the brand of hosiery that used to come in that mysterious egg shaped container at the supermarket is back. Their new brand strategy, "Lucky in L'eggs" hopes to entice 18-34 year old women to give the reinvented brand a try. They have 905 twitter followers ... so maybe one of them will be at the same wedding? You guys can blaze the trail for the rest of us...
  • As far as I can tell, the models on do not care that hosiery could be making a comeback. Go barelegged, or go home.
  • No fashion choice could be much worse than the bizarre tuxedo ensemble Kourtney Kardashian wore to lunch the other day. 
  • You can wear stockings and pretend you're being ironic. 
So in conclusion, I have no firm answer. But I do know that I've spent way too much time reading and writing about hosiery for one evening.

Readers ... what do you think? Help a girl out. She needs to know by this weekend. 


  1. Nude tights/hose/whatever are totally making a comeback. Sometimes solid black doesn't look good w/ everything. Also, as a somewhat/extremely pale person, I think the general public benefits by not having to see my white-ass calves.

    Ultimately, it depends on the length of the dress. Probs wouldn't look great w/ shorter hemline, thereby requiring most of the falsely-colored leg to show.

    And if Carla Bruni does it...well, that lady is doing something right.

  2. I agree - we need to go with Carla on this one...

  3. I think that hose can look great Here's the key though. They must be really, really sheer and splurging on the high quality ones makes all the difference in the world. Stay away from the L'eggs or other drugstore brands and go for the ultra sheer varieties found in department stores. They are $10+/pair, but I promise they are worth it as long as you are very careful putting them on. I am a fan of the "barely black" color in Hanes Ultra sheer for winter dress occasions as it gives the appearance of even more sheerness since it isn't a bold black. For extra sexiness, go for the ones with seams up the back ;-)