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Tights: Not Your Mother's Pantyhose

SS Member Image By shefinds 11.16.09
Tights: Not Your Mother's Pantyhose
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In the past few years, tights (read: not stockings) have carved out a significant space for themselves in the fashion world: it’s now very cool to wear tights with your cold-weather clothes.

In addition to the standby super-opaque black/brown/gray versions, here are three more-adventurous trends to try, and how to wear them.

Sweater-Knit Tights
These cozy, thick tights are knit from fabric, not spun from silk or nylon like mom’s sheers. Because they’re almost pants in and of themselves, we’d recommend pairing them with a mini skirt or a dress that hits above the knee; with a hem any longer, your look can get too heavy. 

Bright Tights
It’s best to keep it simple when dressing around really bright tights: A black dress and black booties look great against a pop of cobalt blue or shocking pink, but add too many colors from the mix, and you’ll detract from the tights’ statement, making the outfit look confused. We’d recommend staying with black, white, charcoal or denim on this one. Here are some of our favorite black dresses --the perfect backdrop to a vibrant pair of tights.

As a side note, don’t be afraid to wear your bright tights with peep-toe shoes. The contrast is cute, and you won’t have to keep up your pedicure all winter.

Open-Weave Tights

"Don't be afraid to wear your bright tights with peep-toe shoes. The contrast is cute, and you won't have to keep up your pedicure all winter."
These are sort of like fishnets, but have more offbeat patterns, like this vertical design from SPANX. Unlike the brights described above, we’d keep these neutral ? black is usually a good bet. Pair them with solid skirts or dresses, or very subtle patterns, like a black-and-navy houndstooth.

Visit for our full guide to tights. Also check out our guides to skirts and dresses for some leggy inspiration.

Will you be wearing tights this season? What are you favorite looks?

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  • pjclayton57 By pjclayton57

    I have always been one to wear tights in the winter! I normally only used the basic black, brown and grey, but have more recently added some color to the mix, especially when wearing a black skirt or dress. I am more of a dress and skirt kind of gal, so the added warmth from the tights really helps out in the winter!

  • loli1707 By loli1707

    Yup ..I luv them ... I always wear crazy styles with a cute black dress & killer heels .. Cheetah ones are a must with boots

  • mskimt By mskimt

    I love tights! I prefer natural fibers and so tights are a great way to wear cotton and wool. I enjoy wearing open weave tights and layer them over top of brightly colored tights. It's fun to layer them, it creates a whole new look

  • teshireman By teshireman

    I would like to see more tights for bigger women. I can find the solid colors, but to try and find patterned ones is difficult.

  • bensmom09 By bensmom09

    I love wearing tights in the winter. They're really fun. I hope this trend sticks around for a while.

  • jlindseyc By jlindseyc

    love tights but hate stockings! I like netural ones that have designs in the fabric and ribbed ones.

  • jlincon71 By jlincon71

    I love wearinng tights now they have all kinds with different patternes on them love them!

  • kboburchock By kboburchock

    I don't like tights usually I feel constricted and uncomfortable. However, I am finding the warmer ones are fun, look good and more comfortable.

  • johnston270 By johnston270

    I love tights! They are so much fun. I find that bright colors look good with knee high boots

  • goal130 By goal130

    I have not worn tights since dance class. Anyone in their forties wear these? I would love to know since I can't stand pantyhose.

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