Leggo of my Leggings! A Short Discussion on Leggings

Leggings are one of those things that you think you either love or hate, and then you someone looking good, or awful in them and you change your views 100%. I always thought Rudolf Nureyev looked good in leggings, but then he was a ballet dancer sans compare!
Leggings and pop socks seemed to be around a lot in my youth, and then slip from view. They didn’t actually die out completely, but sort of went into hibernation for a bit until someone came up with a fashionable way to match them with other clothes. But leggings have been making (a relatively low-key) re-appearance on the runways over the last few seasons and now they’re back with a vengeance. Not only are the high-fashion types and urban fashionistas sporting them, but busy football mums and office executives seem to have embraced them.
As an accessory, leggings are very versatile, which is part of their appeal. They’re available in solid colours for everyday wear as well as patterned and textured designs for special occasions such as parties and weekends.
Let’s start with a definition and then a hint of history. Leggings are a form of skin-tight garment that covers the legs. Modern leggings are typically made from a blend of lycra (also known as spandex), nylon, cotton, or a polyester blend, but they can also be made from other materials such as wool and silk and other materials. Leggings are sometimes worn fully exposed, but are more traditionally worn partially covered by a garment such as a skirt, a large baggy t-shirt, or shorts. Leggings are usually ankle-length, and while some finish at the ankle, some have stirrups going under the foot, while others completely encase the foot. They first came to prominence in the flower-power hippy era of the 1960s, when fashionable clothes began to be widely available for the younger generation.
In theory practically any woman can wear leggings as long as they take their individual fashion sense, age and body type into consideration, including wearing it with the right other clothes.
If it’s comfort and leisure you want, then pair with your leggings than a baggy oversize “slouchy” tee. The tee can be cropped, stop at the waist or the top of the thigh. However due to their overly casual appearance when paired together, baggy tees and leggings should be combined with other garments and/or accessories to bring some stability to the ensemble, and show that you’ve not just thrown stuff on as you leapt out of bed! Nice espadrilles or open-toed sandals can do the trick, plus some trainers. But make sure you have some bangles, and flashy jewellery as well. You are not slovenly, just coolly casual (or casually cool).
The tunic is a runaway favourite to pair with leggings. Many women who favour tunics do so because they are usually forgiving to their figure. They’re roomy without appearing shapeless, and when done in fabrics like cotton, silk or polyester, won’t cling to any problem spots. For the best look, a tunic should hit about mid-thigh. Petite women may think that tunics aren’t for them because they cut off at the thigh area, which gives a shorter silhouette. However, if short women opt for a monochromatic look (an outfit in one colour) with their leggings and tunic they will actually appear taller. Tunics are also great with leggings because there are versions available all year round, so you always have an opportunity to wear the look.
Try pairing leggings with jackets, kaftans, blazers and tunics. It may seem a little unnatural to start with but try a few combos in the mirror. You’ll soon see something that has you going “Oh wow!”
Harking back to the swinging sixties, a great way to wear micro mini dresses is to simply have leggings on underneath. This not only provides a nice amount of coverage for a more modest and versatile look, it can hide any flaws in your leg skin tone (such as birth marks or varicose veins) and when done in a monochromatic way it has an amazing slimming effect as well.
The bottom line is that there will be clothes that you can wear with leggings, it’s just a question of experimenting until you find the look that suits you. You’ll soon be saying “leggo of my leggings!” because you want to keep them as a permanent stand-by in your chest of drawers.