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HISTORY OF HOSIERY: From stockings to hose

Nylon stockings became popular after World War II (1939-1945) and completely replaced silk stockings. Until the late 60s they usually had seams. They were knitted flat and "fully fashioned", in other words shaped to fit the leg like modern sweaters.

By the early sixties, "fully fashioned" or seamed stockings were replaced by modern reinforced heel and toe seamless stockings. Seamless stockings are made on a circular knitting machines and are shaped by tightening the stitches. 

In the 1960's when skirts were worn very short, many women began to wear tights (pantyhose) instead of stockings. Stockings fought for market share but  became nearly extinct as pantyhose gained in popularity.

In current times, stockings have become very fashionable again, and can be seen in fashion magazines and runway shows.

Modern lingerie allows us to be someone different everyday. From thongs to granny panties, conservative gowns to leather and rubber wear, it's all acceptable and within reach. And yes, if we're so inclined, women can even wear a corset.

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After the boyish shapes of the 20s, the 1930s took us full-circle -- and full-figured. Although slim hips were still en vogue, flat breasts were no longer fashionable. Lingerie of the day once again focused on feminine proportions, and the breast-enhancing bra was born.

 

By the 19th century, consumer demands and doctor outrage brought about a lingerie revolution. Corsets became smaller, less restrictive, and less cumbersome. These reconstructed designs allowed freer movement and easier breathing. They also provided more support for the breasts and were appropriatedly named "brassiere," which is French for "support." An important time in the history of lingerie, the 1800s also brought the first padded bra.

[Gallery of sensual lingerie images]

 

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A History of Hose

Elegant, sheer and comfortable pantyhose are taken for granted, but was not until the 1960s that "nylons" became widely available.

"For the previous 400 years, stockings had ruled supreme - ever since the knitting machine was invented in 1589 by Reverend William Lee and stockings made from wool, silk and cotton appeared for the first time. These early stockings were frequently referred to as hose, from which the term hosiery was derived, and were generally worn by men."

(Thanks to My Tights.com and Love to Know.com)

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[Gallery of sensual lingerie images]

Lingerie has come full-circle. No longer dictated by men's opinion of beauty or sexuality, lingerie can be what women want it to be.

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Karolina Kurkova, lingerie model, voted sexiest woman in the world.

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Sarah Palin bemoans feminism: With women's liberation came the unfortunate decision to burn the bra, a move many women surely regretted with the sagging that followed

Tina Fey: Far from the light, lovely creations of today, past undergarments have been painful, dangerous, and downright bizarre.

The Renaissance brought a new focus on womanly curves, and women went to unnatural extremes to achieve the perfect hourglass figure. Corsets of the day were highly restrictive and tightened to the point of being dangerous.

[Gallery of sensual lingerie images]

SARAH PALIN'S WORKOUTS: Sarah Palin has been a runner since childhood. Check out her training program, Nike Triax shoes and Nike running outfits.

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Cleavage was highly prized in the 18th century, and lingerie was designed to heighten the effect. Although corsets were still made of constrictive whalebone, there was a definite movement towards the decorative lingerie we know today.

KATIE COURIC INTERVIEWS SARAH PALIN: Read the extended transcript of Sarah Palin's disastrous interviews with Katie Couric of CBS Evening News. After the Couric interviews, Sarah Palin's star came crashing to earth.

The Roaring Twenties also saw the end of corsets. The light-weight chemise, bloomers, and bodice were introduced. For the first time in the history of lingerie, panties and bras were available in an assortment of colors.

KATIE COURIC FAN SITE: We explain why millions of Americans, not just men, love Katie Couric and her legs.

Naomi Campbell, angry beauty: "Anger is a manifestation of a deeper issue... and that, for me, is based on insecurity, self-esteem and loneliness."

 

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Hollywood's Hottest Stars Part 1 Election 2008
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