This season’s runways have sparked a craze bold, bright tights

  • The rainbow of bold, bright tights on this season’s runways has sparked a craze for colour, says Jessica Carroll 

From Missoni’s tangerine orange to Burberry’s pillar-box red, there was hardly a bare leg to be seen on the spring/summer catwalks.

Our favourite looks (see Sergio Hudson, Zimmermann and Acne) involved impressive colour-matching with tights that blended into the rest of the outfit, while others (Givenchy, The Attico) embraced bold colour blocking in mismatched hues.

For some of you, this will be welcome news. A chance to indulge in a bit of fashion nostalgia (think Princess Diana in matching red tights and pumps or Monica Geller’s outfits in Friends). Maybe your love for bright-hued hosiery goes further back to Mary Quant in the 1960s.

For others, however, coloured tights are a challenge: the sort of thing a frazzled Englishwoman might wear in a Richard Curtis romcom. More shabby shawl than sharply sleek.

YOU’s fashion director Sophie Dearden, a self-confessed lover of beige, also had reservations at first. ‘I’m not into wearing bright colours,’ she says firmly. 

They’re now the focus around which the rest of the outfit is built 

‘I’m very much a neutrals person.’ (For proof, see her shoot on page 24). However, even she now admits to being seduced, conceding that red tights with an all-grey outfit can look ‘surprisingly chic’.

While many runway fads take time to filter through to the high street, coloured tights are already popular. John Lewis has seen a 167 per cent increase in sales of coloured hosiery, with brands Calzedonia and Falke also noticing a rise in demand. Wolford reports that an £85 red pair from its Simkhai collaboration has now become a bestseller.

Meanwhile fashion influencers on social media are fuelling the trend, with TikTok searches for bright tights increasing significantly in recent months.

You can hardly scroll through Instagram without spotting someone styling the look, with red tights getting all the eyeballs – 18.5k tags and rising. Dakota Johnson even wore a pair on a recent episode of The Graham Norton show.

But it’s not just bold monochrome picks that are proving popular. Heist, which has seen a 27 per cent increase in sales of coloured tights this year, is also noticing its customers favouring bright patterned designs (such as spots and herringbone) over the classic black and beige. 

Similarly, Wolford’s snake-print tights sold out quickly on release in August.

Interestingly, hosiery brands are noting that customers are changing the way they think about coloured tights. Where previously they’d get thrown into the shopping basket as an afterthought, they’re now the focus around which the rest of the outfit is built.

This trend may well have legs.

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