Waaay back in February, SarahN dropped this one into the suggestion box:
I’d love a feature on how to dress around colored tights. I just bought a teal pair and have no idea what to with them. You wear them with such aplomb, I’m sure you have some great tips.
I know many folks are still dealing with summer heatwaves, but fall is just around the corner! The time is ripe to tackle tights, and so we shall.
I adore tights, and consider them a quick and easy way to inject even MORE color into my cold-weather outfits. But I was interested to discover the I have posted relatively few bright-tights outfits to the blog! I figured this was one of my staples, but it’s really not. I rely on neutral tights and colorful garments more often than not. But here are some outfits that included vibrantly colored tights, and why I think they work.
If you’ve got a black and white mix, an all-black ensemble, or any other neutral-reliant outfit going on, using super-saturated tights as the lone pop of color looks fantastic. Even though this dress has some color in its print, the fact that it’s a busy print allows those fiery red tights to really shine.
If you happen to have bright tights and bright footwear to match, you can make your legs look a mile long by pairing them. Best to keep other elements of the outfit a little more subdued, but try to pick up that bold color somewhere else. Here, there’s a bit of that vibrant pink in the print on my dress.
Not all colorful tights are eye-searingly bright, and gorgeous muted tones can work wonderfully in legwear. Pair them with colors that have similar properties – duskiness, jewel tone values – and you’ll look chic and elegant. The burnt orange tights here are the brightest element of the outfit, but they work beautifully with the burgundy and tan.
I’ve heard some women say that they worry bright tights look like an awkward afterthought. But as soon as you incorporate the same shade into the upper half of your outfit, you’ve created intentionality. Those magenta tights would’ve looked a bit odd if my top half had been swathed in peacock blue alone … but with the same-colored scarf peeking out, the outfit is united.
Another simple way to make bright tights appear intentional is to repeat their color in an accent piece. Scarves are the most obvious choice, but jewelry and belts work wonderfully, too. Here, the teal in my belt makes those teal tights look like a natural choice.
This technique may be a little more advanced, but I think you folks are up to it! Reflecting the color of tights in an accessory makes the tights seem intentional, but you can also make the tights do the heavy lifting. If you’ve got two pieces that ALMOST go together but need a bit of bridging, tights can help. Here, the print on the scarf makes the black jacket and boots, gray dress, and red tights make visual sense together.
Bright tights aren’t for everyone. They are a bold choice, even when they’re just peeking out beneath a skirt and tall boots. But they can feel playful and joyous, adventurous and unusual in the best possible way. If you can find a bright tight formula that works for you, embrace it! It’ll make the long, dark winter go by so much faster, I swear.