The 1920s were a time when women were experimenting with fashion and their place within society. Notably, it was during this time that women started wearing “short” skirts - which meant that hemlines went from touching the ground to grazing the bottom of a woman’s knee. Even though women were showing off more of their legs than ever before, going bare-legged in public was still a fashion faux pas. To remain covered while wearing on-trend outfits, Flappers
turned to 1920s stockings to keep their legs covered.
Here are the various stocking styles that were popular during the fashion revolution of the Roaring Twenties.
1920s Stockings were a staple in virtually every woman’s closet during the Roaring Twenties. They were traditional made from materials like silk, wool, or cotton. As manufacturing became more advanced during this decade, they eventually started to be made out of Rayon - a brand new synthetic material. Unfortunately, synthetic stockings had a shine that was not considered fashionable. For this reason, many women covered their stockings with cosmetic powder to make them look more matte.
How Stockings Were Worn
Unlike today’s traditional nylons, stockings came in pairs. There was one for each leg and they extended all the way up to the middle of a woman’s thigh. To hold them in place, women wore functional garters, a garter belt, or a girdle to keep them from slipping down and creating a scene. Some fashionable Flappers would roll their stockings down to right above the knee, which kept them in place without the use of a garter or a garter belt.
While black sheer stockings existed, they were not the most popular variation. Instead, women during the 1920s preferred stockings with a more subtle color. Skin-colored stockings were by far the most popular. As the decade wore on, however, women started to make a statement when it came to their stockings. Ivory or light pink were also popular color choices during this decade.
Most women wore solid-colored stockings. With that said, there were also embroidered stockings and stockings that featured eye-catching patterns. Checkers and polka dots were a fun alternative to solid stockings. It was also possible to find stockings that featured stripes, bows, feathers, or flowers.
How To Wear 1920s Stockings Today
We often associate fishnet stockings when it comes to creating a contemporary flapper outfit. If you want to remain authentic while dressing like a fashionable woman from the 1920s, you’ll want to choose something that is a bit more timeless in appearance. Pairing a skirt or dress with sheer tights or nylons is no longer commonplace, meaning adding them are an easy way to put a vintage twist on any outfit.
When wearing a 1920s-inspired outfit, stick to pastel or skin-colored nylons that have a matte (rather than a shiny) finish. You can opt for a traditional look and choose stockings that are held up with garters. With that said, they are slightly more uncomfortable than a traditional nylon and look exactly the same under a modest knee length skirt.