Fishnet stockings and tights accentuate the curvature of your legs, giving you an uber-sexy look, day or night! For extra comfort (particularly with larger-gauge fishnet), try layering a pair of no shows, half socks or liners underneath.
Why is it called “fishnet”?
Though fishnet stockings nowadays are more of a garment worn for looks rather than utility, their origins are in thermal clothing, believe it or not! The stories go that fishermen would drape their nets over themselves and make clothing from them, hence the name “fish net”. This wasn’t just for looks, as these kinds of crocheted “string garments” were worn under clothing to act as a thermal layer, providing a ventilating space of warm air between the body and outer clothing. From these humble origins, fishnet stockings and tights have become a favorite openwork option for dressing up, their good looks no longer hidden under clothing! Of course, wearing fishnet for show removes its use as a thermal layer, but the sturdy net still has use beyond looks. A regular part of roller derby uniforms, even wider gauge fishnet offers more protection than a bare leg, while providing better ventilation than solid tights. This combination of qualities also makes them a great option in the summer, offering light leg coverage without overheating.
Types of fishnet
When we talk about types of fishnet stockings or fishnet tights, we are separating them by gauge. A larger gauge fishnet stocking has larger diamonds and shows more skin. The majority of fishnet stockings are made of a high percentage of nylon or polyamide, blended with a little spandex for stretch.
Regular old fishnet stockingscan look like tiny, solid socks before you put them on. They have amazing stretch because of their open knit and hug your curves, stretching wider across areas like thighs and calves. Slimmer and shorter legs may find that regular fishnet looks almost opaque at narrower spots of the leg, like the ankles.
A much wider gauge, fencenet (also written as “fence net”) doesn’t highlight the curves of the body as much as regular fishnet stockings. It is beautifully decorative and just as stretchy, if not more, than regular fishnet.
Much rarer than fencenet and fishnet stockings is industrial net. Larger gauge than regular fishnet, but smaller than fencenet, industrial net is also thicker. This combo of gauge and sturdiness is what earns them the name “industrial”!
You’ll notice that some styles in this category aren’t technically traditional fishnet stockings. If you want more pattern, openwork styles offer looks like lace and nets that go beyond the simple diamond shapes of fishnet.
Though they’re often just called “crochet” these styles are actually lace knits or openwork styles that resemble crochet textures. Crochet look tights often offer more coverage than fishnet stockings and also come in a wider range of fibers, like cotton and wool.
For a delicate touch of pattern, openwork lace styles range from fleur de lis to geometric patterns, providing similar coverage to fishnet stockings but in a wider selection of looks.
Why add half socks?
For more sensitive toes, no-show socks and half socks worn under fishnet stockings protect your skin and also prevent the fishnet from leaving a pattern on your feet at the end of the day. Styles with a woven toe seam are the best option, giving you seamless coverage under your fishnets.