The text I most often send to my husband prior to our meeting for a night out/wedding/family event: ‘I’m running late. Sorry. While you’re waiting, would you mind grabbing me some tights? Boots ones are fine xxx’ (kisses expand incrementally with every additional five minutes of lateness).
I am often late, and I always need the tights. Why? Because in the flurry of getting ready, I generally find my time consumed by agonising over my dress and lipstick. I then end up in a mad dash to assemble the little details on my way out of the door. Tights are one of those details.
Wolford Tracy Tights in Maroon, £10 at houseoffraser.co.uk
To add to the mayhem, the pairs that make up my motley collection seem to always be inexplicably intertwined with one another in a rather ugly fashion. Come my hour of need, I therefore need to employ some skill in extricating a pair from the drawer in which they reside.
Once that herculean struggle is over (anyone reading who has battled ten pairs of thoroughly enmeshed tights will understand the patience and nous required), I am often confronted with a pair that is too matte/too shiny/too sheer/bobbled/has a ladder on the toe/has a gaping hole on the thigh. By then there is of course no time to embark on a second skirmish in the pursuit of a potentially equally unsuitable pair…
You’d think this sorry state of affairs would have had a confirmed aesthete running with alacrity into one of the great hosiery houses and snapping up their wares years ago. No. I have but soldiered on with my eccentric tights through all sorts of occasions, after which the hastily bought pair of Boots’ finest is relegated to the collection in my drawer, allowing the snake-like collection ever more opportunities for knotting.
In part, I’d say it took me so long to address this issue because tights generally don’t excite me in the slightest (let’s face it, they aren’t a sexy, fun purchase – unless they have seams, in which case the wearer must keep them impeccable and is most likely a different sort of woman to I – the sort to have an entire stocking wardrobe in the manner of Dita von Teese). It’s also because good ones are so darn expensive.
I had a change of mind after yet another last minute text sent to hubs last week when all went awry: Boots was shut, my tights laddered and my appearance for the entire evening subsequently shabby. It was all very vexing.
Wolford 20 Dernier Satin Touch Tights in Caramel, £16 at houseoffraser.co.uk
I decided to have a little shop at Wolford online – not just because the company is Austrian like my mother (who has acquainted me with the perfectionist traits of the Austrian people), but also because they offer such a wide selection.
I logged onto the House of Fraser website to find that my luck was in: there was a sale on the slightly more novelty, but rather wearable, burgundy tights with a diamond pattern. I snapped them up. While I was at it I also went for two others pairs – thick black (for mini skirts) and slightly shiny sheer tights (mainly for wear at weddings).
Once in my hands I marvelled at their supremacy. Soft, slinky, beautifully executed. Perhaps tights – and by extension my legs – could be sexy like Dita’s. In any case, at least my husband can now have a drink on the occasion of my lateness rather than a dash around Boots in an attempt to keep me sightly.