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Image / Fashion

How to wear: coloured tights


by Erin Lindsay
10th Apr 2018
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We’re well into April, and now is the time to shed those bulky winter coverings and embrace the sun! Except, you know, if you live in Ireland.

Whether it takes you a matter of months or the whole of your twenties, we all accept at some point that layers are our friend. They’re the perfect solution for our erratic temperatures and there doesn’t have to be anything boring or drab about them. Bright colours, prints and different textures can all combine to create a gorgeous outfit that also serves as protection from the cold.

One element of a well-layered outfit is, of course, the hosiery, and while we are coming around to the idea of fancy socks as a must-have accessory, many of us still approach coloured tights with trepidation. Brightly toned tights are, in many minds, more toddler than tasteful, but they don’t have to look childish. All you need to do is learn how to wear them.

Add a colour pop

Try to think of coloured tights as a ‘colour pop’ addition to your outfit, similar to a bright shoe or a vibrant bag. These touches can really lift an outfit and breathe life into it. If the woman in this photograph from The Style Stalker had opted for predictable black tights, her outfit would run the risk of being a little drab, with the patterned dress as the only lift in an otherwise neutral ensemble. But with a pop of purple on her legs, the whole look is transformed.

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Photo: The Style Stalker

Go all out

If, however, you’re not one for blending in, the below lesson in being loud and proud with pastels is for you. Mint green, dusky violet and lemon yellow all pair to create a fab 1950s springtime look, showing that there’s nothing subdued about soft colours. Be strategic about the colours you pair together, but remember that you’re making a statement, so don’t play it too safe too safe.

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Photo: Saks Potts Fall ’18 via Man Repeller

Match your hues

Start your outfit planning by choosing a colour combination, and build your look from there. This pairing of royal blue tights and oatmeal is perfect because it gives each piece a chance to stand out equally. The leopard print coat, jewel tone skirt and tights and tweed jacket all merge to form an amazing look, with the tights really standing out.

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 Photo: Style du Monde

Go preppy

Coloured tights can be, admittedly, a little Gossip Girl, but preppy doesn’t have to mean twee. Take a leaf out of Emili Sindev’s book and pair your pastel pink tights and pinafore with edgier accessories, like pointed white leather boots and an oversized shirt. These all serve to toughen up the look so it’s not too ‘schoolgirl’, while keeping the pink tights as a nice feminine touch.

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Pair them with a pattern

We all know (or should by now, anyway) that pairing a block colour with a bold print is a failsafe combination. Why not have your tights as the block colour? This summery floral dress is a great piece on its own, but the addition of some forest green tights and simple sandals elevates it entirely.

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Photo: emilisindlev

In the pink

With millennial pink having graduated to punchier shades of fuchsia and magenta this year, now is the perfect time to dabble in this trend. This pairing of a bright pink blazer with dark, bordering-on-burgundy tights is the perfect way to do it. Stretching your tights down to cover your shoes? Optional.

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Photo: Man Repeller
Featured image: Man Repeller