In an earlier Valentine’s Daypost I pulled up a pair of stockings, slowly and lovingly fastened them to a garter belt, and dreamed myself back in time. I woke up practically elbowing Joan and Betty from Mad Men for a little space in front of the powder room mirror. Quite the vintage vision. Which is fine for me but maybe not so much for you.
If vintage Champagne is more your speed than vintage knickers, I am happy to recommend a completely current hosiery pairing for your Valentine’s Day look more fully in tune with your more contemporary vibe:
Stay-ups are fast as the pace of the life we lead, gliding on from toe-tip to thigh-top in a heartbeat. Stay-ups work with clingy, body-con fashions, clean as a whistle under tight knit dresses, unseen beneath the tightest bandage skirt, no belts peeking out from low slung waistlines. Stay-ups are convenient for calls of nature. Stay-ups don’t get involved in the whole garter straps outside-or-inside-the-panties debate. Stay-ups, stay up, standing tall on their own, as independent as you.
I swear, if Steve Jobs had gone into the hosiery business we’d all be wearing stay-ups except they would be called iStockings.
Stay-ups are here to stay. They pair the red-hot sex appeal of bygone times with more contemporary, liberated lusts for life. They go nicely with other healthy lusts too.
One of my favorite hosiery vendors, Philippe Matignon has an assortment of stay-ups that pair with Valentine’s Day as well as Champagne pairs with popcorn. I have notes on two models here.
If your approach to a night out is subtle, I recommend the Dentelle (pictured above), a 20 denier sheer, half-boarded, sandal-toed and simply, dressy black sheer. With a matte, satiny finish, this Lycra / Elastine blend has all the cool feel, comfort, and durability characteristics you would expect from a premium European brand. Four beautiful inches of intricate macramé lace crown the stocking leg and keep them surely in pretty place.
The fit is superb with just elastic enough that they hug the leg without tugging or budging the scallop fringed eye-candy even a fraction. The full inch of silicon gripper in two strips distribute tension evenly. Unlike lesser stay-ups that I have lived to regret wearing, these embrace without pinching. More importantly, they go hours without any adjusting. My Dentelle’s were tested through a 12 hour day. They finished the day precisely where they started. No adjustments, and not a single moment of fear of a wardrobe malfunction.
If your approach is a little more provocative I suggest two things:
Choose the Melodie stay-up, and
Be sure that your date gets a good look at you from behind at some point in the evening. Perhaps as you walk to the ladies in between courses at dinner.
Melodie is a finer, dressier 15D sheer with a little more shimmer than the Dentelle. Melodie also possesses the hypnotic charm of a simple, sexy back seam. I have always been mad for back seams. You can go the whole evening forgetting what you are wearing, but no-one else in the room will.
Melodie is topped off with the same class of elastic lace top as the Dentelle, with one arresting difference. The stocking top is two-toned with the introduction of romantic, Valentine ready red.
Love, love, love the red, the possibilities are limitless. Introduce other red elements into your under dressing. Scarlett nails. Ruby lips. Accessorize with Louboutin’s. Decorate the bed with rose petals. Yes, the possibilities are limitless, but one thing is perfectly predictable: It will be a red hot Valentine’s Day.
Now, while your date is a reserving your dinner table, you should visit Philippe Matignon and choose your stay-ups for the evening. Take a look around at the ready-to-wear lines too, all sorts of sexy for the rest of your body. You will also find a fabulous assortment of PM hosiery at HerRoom, Peek Brooklyn and other select online venues and boutiques near you.
I am not kidding about Champagne and Popcorn either. They pair like a dream. Take my advice, skip desert this Valentine’s Day dinner, cab home, nuke a bag of popcorn, take the bubbly off ice, pop the cork, pour a flute and taste.
You will want to thank me for this advice too, but don’t. There will be more urgent needs to be met.