A Royal Hosiery Affair

It’s been a long, two-year wait but finally the release date is in touching distance and we are more than ready to see Olivia Coleman take over from Clare Foy’s award-winning portrayal of Queen Elizabeth II.

From the new cast to the gorgeous sets, what we are really most excited to see is the costumes, as the seamed tights worn by the main cast and extras were supplied by The Tight Spot.com!

Over 18 months ago the first delivery of tights from The Tight Spot landed at The Crown costume department at Elstree Studios, with regular top ups required throughout the months of filming ahead.

Pamela Mann Jive Seam Tights Pamela Mann Jive Seam Tights Black
The exact Tights worn by the cast of The Crown, supplied by The Tight Spot.com Also available in other colourways,  including Nude with a Black seam 

The particular style used has a nude back seam, mirroring the style of the time where hosiery was in an exciting, transition period. The Pamela Mann Jive Seam Tights are also available in 4 sizes up to XXXL, which is helpful when aiming to achieve a uniform look across a cast of many shapes and sizes. These 15 denier nude sheer tights are style worn regularly by the Queen to this day.

The Crown Costume LooksOfficial photographs released by Netflis on set of The Crown, showing the cast wearing hosiery.

The third and fourth season of The Crown covers from 1964 -76, an interesting time for fashion and a pioneering time for hosiery. The original cut and sew style stockings of the 40s and 50’s had been replaced with tube knitted stockings, due to the invention of Nylon.

As we are aware, hosiery is a must have item for the Royal family with the Queen requesting all female members to wear tights at formal occasions. Whilst, in today’s world this may seem unusual, in the period covered in the next season of The Crown, tights were an essential item for everyday wear whether Royalty or commoner! However they weren’t the innovative, easy to wear garments that we now enjoy.

royals in sheer tights katie and meghan tights
Members of the Royal Family in sheer tights The Duchess of Cambridge and The Duchess of Sussex in sheer tights

It wasn’t until the 1950’s that a progression from stockings to tights was achieved by attaching two stocking legs into a pair of knickers. This enabled the explosion of fashion tights seen in the 1960’s by designers such as Mary Quant. By 1968 manufacturing techniques had developed to create the one piece tights (without the sewn in knicker!) that we see today.

Even with these huge steps forward, the Queen – and the general public, had to wait until Lycra was incorporated into the manufacturing process, in 1985, to enable the durable stretchy finish we expect from our hosiery today.

At this time, Lycra was only added at every third stitch. In 1994, the process changed again so that Lycra could be introduced in every stitch – creating the super stretch, second skin feel that tights offer in 2019.

history of stockings

1940's Fully Fashioned Stockings, Suspender Belts are phased out in 50's & 60's, Mary Quant Fashion Tights in the 60's, Modern Tights with high Lycra content.