Foundations of Attire

I live an hour outside of Washington DC. A few times a week I travel into the Capital to do volunteer work, and while spending my time in the city, I often take note of fashion and the outfits women around me are wearing. For the most part, the working professionals of DC are a well dressed bunch. Yet, despite the well put together outfits, there is something that I have noticed that is very much lacking. In fact, I’ve noticed pretty much everywhere that this “something” is missing in ladies’ wardrobes around the country.

What is that something you might ask? Well… it’s the good old fashioned slip and pantyhose.

I have owned a slip and a pair of either tights, or nylons, or stockings, or pantyhose… whatever you want to call them… for pretty much my entire life. Looking back in pictures of me when I was a baby, my mother had me in tights. I even have a distinct memory of owning a slip at the age of 4 or 5. Slips and hosiery have been a staple in my wardrobe even before I could walk. So why are they often missing in today’s modern woman’s wardrobe? Are they items of a by gone era?

In casual conversation with friends I have several who vehemently hate nylons.

“Oh they’re too tight.”

“I always tear them.”

“They make me sweaty.”

Now, all those statements are valid. Nylons or tights can be uncomfortable… but not all of the time. As I am writing this now, I am currently wearing a pair of nylons, and 90% of my time that I am wearing them, I forget I have them on!

What purpose do nylons or tights have in 2020?

Well for one thing; they make you look more put together. Often times a sleek, silky pair of nylons can add that finishing touch to a dressed up outfit. Nylons also save you from that embarrassing moment when the skin on your legs looks a little dry, or if you didn’t have time to shave in the morning.

A thick pair of opaque tights can also help keep you warm during the cold winter months. I can’t tell you how many times I’ll see a professional young woman walking down Pennsylvania Avenue, dressed in a pencil skirt, but her legs are bare, red, and chilled from the DC wind. My first thought when I see her is: “oh she looks so cold!”. A good pair of thick tights or even fleece lined tights can just give you some added comfort in the winter.

If you’re someone who isn’t used to dressing up in a skirt or dress, nylons or tights can help you get over that feeling of being “exposed” without anything around your legs. The sensation of the fabric on your legs will just help you feel a little more secure in your outing with a skirt or dress. Not to mention, nylons and tights can help smooth out panty lines.

Now am I saying you should wear nylons or tights all year round? No! I have a personal rule that I start wearing nylons and tights in mid-October to mid-April. For me they are a seasonal garment for the Fall and Winter.

Now what about slips?

Slips are those silky or cotton base layers that you wear under your dresses or skirts. They have many, many benefits! The main benefit being they add an extra layer of modesty to your outfit. Are you wearing a sheer fabric in which light can shine through? Wear a slip! Are you having static issues? Wear a slip! Is it summer time and you can see some panty lines through your skirt? Wear a slip! Does your skirt ride up when you sit down? Wear a skirt extender! Are you heading to a big event and you’re worried you’ll sweat? You guessed it… wear a slip!

There are many different types of slips. There are your basic slips, your full length slips, and your skirt extenders. Each are invaluable to have in your wardrobe. I personally love to wear slips because they can get me a few more wears out of a garment. I purchased a cotton full length slip just for this purpose.

My cotton slip is what sits against my skin, it’s what comes into contact with my body’s natural oils, my body lotions, and sweat. Often times when I wear my cotton slip, my dress I wore over it remains clean enough to wear one more time. I throw the slip in the laundry and the dress back into my closet. By getting more wears out of a garment between washes, I am able to prolong the lifespan of a dress, thus saving money in the process.

Not too long ago in our history, it was unthinkable, for a woman to not wear slips or nylons. In fact, when I watch historical documentaries about historical fashion, the undergarments were more important than what showed on the outside! The foundations of our attire can help us to look more put together, feel more confident, and help us keep our modesty and prolong the lifespans of our wardrobe.

So I challenge you… invest in a slip or two and a pair of nylons! You wont be sorry!!

My favorite cotton full length slip

Half slip

Skirt extender


Fleece lined tights


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