Time to stock up colourful stockings!

New Delhi, Jan 6 (IANS) For some it is a mere piece of clothing and for some a stylish piece of accessory. But, all said and done, stockings in all colours, prints, materials and styles are a big hit this season.

Use a durable pair below overcoats, skirts, tunics and dresses to not just keep yourself warm and snug but also pick colourful ones to add a dash of fashion quotient to your winter look, designers suggest.

"Apart from classic black, beige and ivory, coloured stockings are a big trend. This season, stockings in jewel tones are in vogue, especially in the berry palette of burgundy, wine, purple and brinjal," designer Aniket Satam told IANS.

The trend has dominated foreign runways, and it is now hitting the Indian fashion industry in a big way. It is especially bold colours and printed designs which are making a huge splash in the branded as well as flea market scene.

Available at anything above Rs.45 a pair, stockings come in seamed, fishnet, woollen and nylon. They may be thigh-high, pantyhose, anklets and knee-high - make your pick according to your comfort, body structure and requirement.

"Sheer stockings will look funny in winters," warns designer Vandy Mehra.

"In colours, black is a staple, but a deep blue is another great option. My personal recommendation would be a self-patterned black stocking, but paisley-printed stockings are a rage. Even polka-dot stockings is a hot buy this season and pairs up with almost all the garments," Mehra told IANS.

Internationally, celebrities like Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Beyonce Knowles and Victoria Beckham have flaunted stockings unabashedly at red carpet events, and created fashion statements. But in India, celebrities are yet to popularise the trend.

"Celebrities in India are not as open about their wardrobe details as it is in the west. But, for sure, stockings are seen more as a utility item till now. That is changing. It is getting its status of an accessory and the wish to experiment with it more is becoming evident," said Mehra.

Whether it is a college-going girl or a working woman, stockings can be worn by anyone and everyone - and they go with all kinds of looks.

But teaming it with the right apparel is important.

"Play with brighter tones of leggings with dark dresses. Printed dresses or skirts need solid stockings. However, be careful about how much lighter or darker your stockings are as compared to your clothing. If the stockings are darker, your legs will appear slimmer," said designer Nidhi Munim.

"It is time we gave our wardrobe the 1960s glam by sporting chromatic polka dot stockings. Pair a monochrome polka dot stocking with a solid black dress and slip on a sequined waistcoat that matches your pumps (footwear)," suggested Munim.

Follow a basic rule - do not mix a printed dress with a pair of printed stockings.

"Always look for a balance, where one of the pieces in the ensemble has to be toned down for the other to stand out," says Mehra.

Don't forget suitable footwear to complete the look!

Right footwear is a must trick one must master before sporting stockings. Go for heels which look sturdy and avoid chunky platforms. Delicate strappy mess should be avoided; instead opt for old school Mary Jane styles or traditional pumps," said designer Shouger Merchant Doshi.

"Plain black shoes with wedge heels and pumps look great with a polka dot black and white stocking. A pair of plain boots, paired with printed stockings, will look chic," added Doshi.

Time to stock up, ain't it?

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