Tights are a common hoisery in our wardrobe nowadays but it seems that they’ve a very long history that we might not expect! As you could imagine, tights were not exactly the same than today, they had a lot of different shapes, colors and sizes but were always part of a trend.

The beginning …

Do you know that the first sign of socks and hosiery were discovered in Egypt in a wealthy noble woman tomb? That’s really impressive but not surprising that Egyptian created such a modern accessory more than 2000 years ago.  It’s not the first thing they did that were well ahead of their time. Those socks were in woven but we don’t really know for which reason they were created.

Pyramid Egypt desert

Tights for evryone …

Less far away in time but still dating from few centuries, tights were fashionable during the Renaissance period. As you could probably see on some paintings, knitted stockings were a really common garments for both men and women. Kings and aristocrats used to wear white silk stockings daily when common people were wearing cotton tights, way less expensive and fragile.

LOUIS XIV
moliere-lisant-tartuffef

And the nylon was created …

Those tights are not the ones that we are used to see on our legs, but you could realize that their ancestors have a long history! So let’s talk more in details of our modern tights, let’s get back to the 20th century… In some old movies from the Golden Age of Hollywood for example, you can see that some beautiful ladies wearing some fishnet tights but still not our “classic” tights. It’s during this period in the 30’s that the nylon was created. This new fabric cheap to make, resistible and flexible, was the beginning of a new age for the tights and stocking industry.

Birth-of-nylons-new-york-fair
1950s Clothing Style - Lingerie

Tights are sold out …

During the WWII in the US, nylon was rationed in order to make some parachutes and other waterproof clothes for the army. Therefore, all the shops were tights sold out. They were such an important and “mandatory” hosiery at this period that women painted some tights with some “liquid stocking” and drew some steams on the back of their legs. The aim of it was to create a fake tight effect because they wouldn’t consider to go out legs “free”. Crazy no?! Even some “leg make up bars” were founded to please the women during this restriction period. After the war, nylon was used again for tights and then ladies gave up the liquid stockings.

Fashion Photo tights 1954 Erik Liljeroth
threaded paint on stockings corbis 575

Show me your legs …

In the 60’s, the miniskirt was invented and then knee tights were not long enough to wear them. And guess what, the tights of nowadays were created! On piece that may suit your legs and your waist at the same time. Amazing!

les premiers tests des collants

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.