A quick overview of the history of hosiery brought to us by The Telegraph. We really enjoyed it and thought that you would too.

 

Once considered a rare luxury, tights and stockings are now at the forefront of fashion and come in an array of colors and deniers

Twenties-tights_3278601b

The Twenties: Super synthetics
Several centuries ago, it was men, not women that donned stockings of the knitted variety, but as men took to breeches and trousers in the 1800s, stockings became the norm for women.

In the Twenties, synthetic yarns transformed the industry, making hosiery sheerer than cotton and cheaper than silk.

The Forties: Nylon mania
The first nylon stockings hit the market in 1940, with a reported 780,000 pairs bought in the US on the first day they went on sale. They featured a seam at the rear and were commonly referred to as “nylons”.

Lambeth-nylon-tigh_3278610b

Wartime Britain: Nylons no more
Nylon stockings were rationed during Second World War, when the flexible fibre was reallocated to the production of essential parachutes, ropes and tyres. Some women would paint seams on their legs to make it look like they were wearing them.

Fishnets in the Fifties
Fishnets had been around since the early Thirties but were mainly worn by performers such as Ava Gardner (pictured) to accentuate muscle definition on stage and in publicity photographs. Fishnets are still as popular with performing artists today, such as Rihanna and Lady Gaga.

1950s-stockings_3278612b

All hail Lycra
In the Fifties, Du Pont invented Lycra and discovered that it could add stretch to nylon. This dramatically improved the fit and comfort of hosiery and helped introduce seam-free stockings to the market.

No-suspender Sixties
In 1967, British brand Pretty Polly brings hold-ups to the market, doing away with suspender belts and the unsightly bulges they created. This launch helped turn the brand into the number-one hosiery label in the UK.

Swinging Sixties and the launch of tights
The most revolutionary launch of the Sixties, however, was the advent of one-piece tights as we know them today. With the trend for hemlines creeping higher and higher, model Twiggy and her peers needed a product that worked in harmony with their Mary Quant miniskirts.

Floral-patterned-t_3278662b

Flower Power
By the Seventies, tights could be used as a form of self-expression. Whether they were patterned, printed with flowers and diamonds or displaying a riotous use of colour, everyone from Littlewoods to Givenchy was experimenting with motifs and colourways.

Punks in tights
Fishnets enjoyed a resurgence in the late Seventies and Eighties as the tights style of choice for punk rockers. Often heavily ripped, fishnets became synonymous with the tribe.

Untitled-3

Opaques for the Noughties
As with every aspect of fashion, tights are subject to the whims of passing trends. The Noughties was arguably dominated by thick black opaques, which was seen as the more modern and flattering alternative to low-denier styles. Opaques got bonus points for being warm and durable, too.

The mock suspenders
The 2000’s brought the sexy suspenders back into the spotlight, and trend that Erica M. was quick to pick up on. But these were of the trompe-l’oeil variety, allowing for the look without all the pieces. Affordable and loved by celebrities such as Lily Allen, they’re an accessible and sexy addition to any outfit.

13afaba2f81beb7fbdc5ba0e91eb9578

Follow:

International Women’s Day is all about reflection, advocacy, and action. In celebration of how far we’ve come Erica M. would like to turn attention to some of our favorite women in history who continue to inspire and embody our brand aesthetic.

Kiki De Montparnasse

MARCUS 2

Alice Ernestine Prin nicknamed Queen of Montparnasse, and often known as Kiki de Montparnasse, was a French artist’s model, nightclub singer, actress, memorist, and painter. She flourished in, and helped define, the liberated culture of Paris in the 1920s.

Luisa, Marchesa Casati Stampa di Soncino 

ca. 1972 --- Marisa Berenson dressed as the Marchesa Luisa Casati Stampa, at the Rothschild ball. --- Image by © Condй Nast Archive/CORBISLuisa Casati, was an Italian heiress, muse, and patroness of the arts in early 20th-century Europe known for her eccentricities. As the concept of dandy was expanded to include women, the Marchesa Casati fitted the utmost female example by saying: “I want to be a living work of art”.

 

Josephine Baker

gdefon

Josephine Baker was an American-born French dancer, singer, and actress who came to be known in various circles as the “Black Pearl,” “Bronze Venus” and even the “Creole Goddess”. Born Freda Josephine McDonald in St. Louis, Missouri, she became the first black woman to star in a major motion picture. Baker refused to perform for segregated audiences in the United States and is noted for her contributions to the Civil Rights Movement.

Marilyn Monroe
marilyn-monroeActress Marilyn Monroe was born as Norma Jeane Mortenson on June 1, 1926 in Los Angeles, California. Probably the most celebrated of all actresses, Monroe overcame a difficult childhood to become a much-admired international star. With her breathy voice and hourglass figure, Monroe took the world by storm.

Follow:

UHT_Lulublog2

Erwin Blumenfeld (1897–1969) was a photographer and artist born in Germany. Drawing inspiration from the Dada Movement to classical and modern paintings, he developed a unparalleled style in which he captured his subjects. He was best known for his fashion photography published in Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar in the 1940s and 1950s. His black and white images of women in sensual yet playful poses are wistfully exquisite. He continues to influence photography till this day and will always be a source of inspiration for the Erica M. design team.

I Love Chanel by Solve Sundsbo A Tribute to Erwin Blumenfeld

Erwin Blumenfeld X Erica M. Inspo:

UHT_Lulublog2EricaM_FW14_IHeartYouBlack_Product_0030Clean

I Heart U Hosiery – $42

 

tumblr_nj7ju8yi1Q1u984rko3_1280donna_inst1

Donna Hosiery – $28

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Follow: