Sunday, January 22, 2006

Darn It!

I was darning the heels of my one last pair of good wool socks today (Which is a chore that sucks ass! Thanks for asking!!!) and I was reminded of this pair of 1920's silk stockings in my collection. Yeah I got vintage nylons too.

The writing on the stocking top says "Thread O Life, full fashioned, leg all silk, top all cotton, foot all silk except 8 1/2 cotton lined, service weight". The little tab off to the side says, "mending thread tab inside hem".

So you got these jazzy silk stockings and you get a hole in them. You can't fix them with sewing thread or yarn and stockings come in lots of different colors making silk darning thread hard to match. So what do you do?

What do you mean you don't care? You're going to care because I say so. At least pretend to care if only to make me feel better.

Thread O Life Silk Stockings have this strange little tab of silk hiding in the tops of each stocking, right in the back where the seam is. You're supposed to unravel it and use it to make repairs. I've heard of women darning stockings on a lightbulb and I hope old bulbs were tougher than those little fragile things we use now. I've got a wooden darning egg that winds up getting pretty abused by the time I'm done.

You ever wonder why in 1920's photos and films the girls all seem to have wrinkly ankles and ill-fitting stockings? Why not? You should wonder about these things! I wonder about these things but then I'm a weirdo with no life. I also wonder about coat buttons, fabric prints, shoe heels, and dress linings. I should get out more often.

Silk stockings wrinkled because the fit was crap, that's why. The old style stockings (even 1950's nylon ones) didn't stretch as much. They're hard to put on because they have to be large enough to fit over your foot but still be tight enough to fit the ankle. So the fit was crap, plus they weren't anywhere near as sheer as nylons so the wrinkles showed big time.

Hotcha! You can see the lovely wrinkles that make you look like you're wearing grandma's supp-hose as well as full-fashioned decreases that resemble surgery scars. Plus a little rectangle up the back of the heel where the yarns are doubled. The whole foot, top of the toe, as well as a couple inches up the heel are doubled for extra strength. I've got 50's stockings that still have that double heel part going up the leg. It was supposed to be sexy or something. There are companies who still make those in black and the shoe/stocking fetishists love the hell out of them.

The color is pretty unnatural and shiny, and there's no way in hell that my legs were ever that color. They're pasty dead white, in case you were wondering. You probably weren't, but I've told you anyhow and you're stuck with it.

No I don't wear these because they're too damned short because women were only like 5 ft tall. The bottom of the stocking top comes right above my kneecap.


Scott said...

You know, they make new socks, hose, and stockings, so you don't have to constantly repair stuff like Mammy Yokum in the Great Depression.

Severina said...

Oh you know Mammy Yokum never wore any socks or stockings. Shoes either. I only repair wool socks.

You mean you wouldn't fix those tube socks and plaid shirts you constantly wear?

Shreya Nakra a.k.a Dewy said...


i like the way you write. its quite witty (except the part in the end where you sound a little bitter). dont be bitter.
you have an interesting hobby going on. Keep it going!!!

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