New year, new hope for more pantyhose


Robin Maryland, president, ActSensuous
Robin Maryland, president, ActSensuous

Did you know that January 4 is “National Triva Day?”

I just learned that while doing research to write this post.  Turns out there are about 20 other little celebrations associated with January, including “National write the wrong year on your check month,” “Bath Safety Month” (seriously?) and “Stalking awareness month.” (OK, there’s one for you.)

I found this a few days ago when I went Googling for validation of something I saw on a TV commercial.  It’s an ad by ShoeDazzle (link below), referencing the celebration of “National Bootie Month.”   https://www.ispot.tv/ad/ACvp   I thought, “What?  Is that really a thing?”

OK, apparently, mostly, it is, only it’s really called “National Bootie Day,” and it’s actually on September 10, according to JustFab.com and other references I’ve now seen.

http://blog.justfab.com/2015/09/justfab-celebrates-nationalbootieday/

So, ShoeDazzle jumped the gun a bit (just nine months) to promote its products, but the timing of that commercial was spot-on for me, as it got me wondering all about booties worn with pantyhose, and this ad prompted me to look into the whole idea and write about it here.

Those of you who’ve gotten to know me throughout the years probably realize I don’t like the wearing of boots with dresses or skirts, but what about booties?  Hmmmm, let me think … NO.

Why do I dislike boots or booties with a dress or skirt?  Because it hides too much leg and foot. My preference has always been any kind of high heels (but not so much the platform kind), or pumps or dress sandals.  And the less the shoe, and the more the foot, the better.

British-American actress, Sienna Miller, wears a plaid tweed jacket with shorts and peep-toe booties.
British-American actress, Sienna Miller, wears a plaid tweed jacket with shorts and peep-toe booties with black tights.

On the other hand (OK, the foot), open- or peep-toe booties worn with sheer pantyhose apparently is a thing these days.

And you know what?  I’m good with that.

diane-krugerI mean, you ain’t never gonna find me sporting the look, as actress Diane Kruger (right) does, but I officially state here that I am all for it on anyone else.  Why?  If women will wear pantyhose with open- or peep-toe booties, it’s another win for all of us.

Further, it’s just one more thing that ought to drive the “fashion experts” crazy.

fpWe all know how much the fashion police out there despise, not only pantyhose, but even more so, pantyhose worn with open-toe high heels, even while no one ever follows their stupid advise.

Nevertheless (and this is huge), it now appears we’ve all finally worn down some of those fashion freak naysayers.  Case in point, check out this Vogue.com story that ran a few months ago:

http://www.vogue.com/13488139/tights-open-toe-shoes-runway-trend-spring-2017-fashion-week/

Runway model wearing sheer pantyhose with open-toe shoes.
Runway model wearing sheer pantyhose with open-toe shoes.

If, with the new year upon us, you’re looking for signs of hope and optimism about the return to mainstream status of sheer pantyhose, this Vogue.com story is a giant leap forward.

Too bad, though, that the only photo (I could find anyway) related to this new concession about sheer pantyhose being worn with open-toe shoes on the runway, is this one (left) with the model wearing some ridiculous-looking pantyhose.

Still, there’s no denying this is a huge step forward for pantyhose lovers.

I mean first, the fashion police told us pantyhose for any situation and venue were an absolute no-no.  Yes, they won quite a number of blind followers, yet, pantyhose didn’t die, did they?

And, you’ll remember, ActSensuous (which started in 2001, at the very height of the “bear” legs movement), was always here telling you not to worry; to keep the faith, as there remained a sizable pocket of resistance by classy ladies, female business execs, celebrities and thousands upon thousands of “real girls” who never gave up on pantyhose.

When the fashion watchdogs realized, but couldn’t admit, that pantyhose were still a force, they shined their negative spotlight a little lower, barking out that, of all the horrible things about pantyhose, the absolute worst was wearing them with dress sandals.

Ph toes They actually plastered this pic (left) all across the Internet, trying to show how bad that idea is, as if anybody believed anyone actually wore ugly hosiery like that with sandals.

To that, I present this image (below).

abbey-clancyThe wearer (right) is Abbey Clancy, a lingerie, catwalk model and television personality in England.

Anyone who would try to discourage this look is, well, most likely jealous, as Abbey’s feet are beautiful in those sheer pantyhose.  Often, I smiled when seeing absolutely everywhere that NOBODY was buying that rubbish the so-called fashion experts wanted women to believe:  That it was taboo to wear sheer pantyhose with open-toe shoes.

And, thankfully, from the most successful and highest profile women to the everyday real girls out and about across the whole wide world, everyone who wears pantyhose always has been wearing them with open-toe shoes.

During the past few years, the latest manifestation of that trend has been wearing pantyhose or tights with open- or peep-toe booties.  To me, that’s sorta like giving a big “Take that” to all those fashion know-it-alls.

Kylie 1

Still, I didn’t really care, and just forgot about the whole thing until I remembered seeing this picture (above) of young TV personality, Kylie Jenner, wearing open-toe booties (quite beautifully) with sheer black pantyhose during a Nickelodeon awards show a few years ago.

I thought she looked amazing, but I still figured this was a very unique thing, and as usual for me, I somehow missed the point and largely forgot about Kylie’s look back back then.  Until, that is, I saw the ShoeDazzle commercial earlier this month.

jessica-albaSo I launched an Internet search to see whether anyone else really was sporting this look?

To my surprise after three days of research, I was able to file only a handful of pics, such as this one of actress, Jessica Alba (right), to share with you.

Now, that doesn’t mean that’s all I found.  No-no-no.  I actually saved 93 pics that have something to do with the subject of this post.

And, lest ye think that what I do for you here is all just fun and games for me, let me share the dilemma I came to have.  When laying out the copy and then trying to illustrate it with the perfect artwork (meaning choosing just the right image to illustrate a specific point I make), it’s way too cumbersome to sift through the 93 choices in one folder.  So, being the super-organized type, I sorted all 93 images into different subfolders — nine to be exact.

I can hear what you’re thinking now: “That Robin, she’s a clever gal.”  Yeah, but nine subfolders to do with wearing pantyhose or tights with open- or peep-toe booties, you ask?  You bet.

You see, the problem I encountered was this whole booties thing ain’t all that black and white here.  To give you an idea of what I’m talking about, let’s go through all nine subfolders of images.  C’mon, it’ll be fun …

1. Open- or peep-toe booties with pantyhose

kylie-j-2 The very point of this post, right?  Well, the most significant photo I found was the one that started it all for me: Kylie Jenner’s look (right) during that Nickelodeon awards show.

In my opinion, she is the signature example of wearing sheer pantyhose with open-toe booties, although, I don’t get black pantyhose with white footwear.

Still, I have to give her credit for this look.  With those toes in those hose, she could pull off anything.

2. Open- or peep-toe booties without pantyhose

nina-dobrevI know what you’re thinking: Why would you show a picture of that, Robin?

Well, one cannot know what cold feels like, if one has lived one’s whole life in 90-degree weather. (Prophetic, huh?)

And since open- or peep-toe booties exist, naturally, they are (most often, I found) going to be worn with bear legs.

So here ya go.  See how they look?  Now, aren’t you glad you saw Kylie Jenner’s way of wearing them?

You’re welcome.

 

3. Booties with pantyhose

morena-baccarinYou get that?  Just plain old booties (not open- or peep-toe).  In my search, I found many more pics of regular booties, but at least, I found a bunch of pictures of women wearing them with pantyhose.  So you have to see one of them.

Probably, the most compelling pic I found of someone wearing just plain old booties (but with pantyhose) is this one of actress Morena Baccarin.  There are precious few photos of Baccarin wearing pantyhose, so to find one of her wearing pantyhose with booties seemed too significant not to show you.

Why do we care, though?   Well, it’s “National Bootie Month.”  OK, actually, it isn’t (as we covered in the beginning), but since that goof-up was what spawned this blog post, look at this picture and be thankful.  Good job.

4. Booties without pantyhose

OK, just kidding.  I’m not going to show you that.  I mean, I found a lot more of those pictures than anything else, and I did put a few of them in a folder with this name, but we’ve got more important things to cover here.  So, we’ll move on.  (You’re welcome.)

5. Just booties

Christian Louboutin-Guerilla Studded-open-toe booties.
Above, a Christian Louboutin Guerilla Studded open-toe bootie.

Seriously.  With pantyhose or without, I found so many things that might, or might not, be booties, I had to create and fill a subfolder with that name.

So, to be clear, the image you see here (right) is an authentic bootie.

6. Not actually booties

You see where I’m going with this?  Some footwear pics I found (below, left) kinda, sorta looked like booties and even had pantyhosed feet in them.   I have no idea what the heck these things are called, maybe just boots (low ones), but they aren’t in the spirit of the booties we’re talking about here.  Maybe they are just some kind of funky, chunky shoes.

just-bootsIn any case, since I collected and stored those pics (then, realized after all the experience I’d gained) that they actually aren’t booties, you have to see a pic of one of them.

Pretty nice pic, too.  At least, the girl is wearing these regular old boots with pantyhose.

 

7. Not sure

kylie-minogueThat’s right.  There are some pics of women in pantyhose wearing something that might, or might not, be a bootie.  The only thing I know for sure now is that I have no real idea what the heck a bootie is.  Hey, sue me, OK?

So here’s a picture (left) of Australian mega performer, Kylie Minogue.  See if you can tell whether those things on her feet are booties, or something else, smarty pants.  Hey, at least, she’s wearing pantyhose with them.

not-talking-about-this8. Not this

One thing I had no trouble with was being pretty clear that this image (right) is not what this blog post is about.  But I really I liked the picture.

So here it is.

9. Absolutely stupid, doesn’t count

dumbest-look-everSeriously, I made a subfolder with this title.

That’s because these pics I found, but didn’t want to find (or even see) are the dumbest thing I have ever seen in our beloved pantyhose industry.

And because I had to see it, you have to see it.

I would like to find the moron who came up with this idea, and karatefy him or her.

In fact, I’d also like to kick the frick out of the bigger moron who actually bought this idea.

Here’s how I imagine the first meeting about this product design went:

Pitchman:  Hey, I’ve got a great idea here.  How about we make pantyhose that go from the waist all the way down to the feet, but stop at the toes?

Boss:  Wait a minute, did you really just say what I think you said?  What the heck is wrong with you?

stupidPitchman:  Now, hear me out, hear me out.  We’ll call them toeless pantyhose, and that alone probably would get some  women out there to buy them.

Boss:  Why on Earth would anyone buy such a thing?

Pitchman:  Well, for years, all those fashion experts have been telling and making some truly dumbass women out there believe that they should never wear pantyhose with open-toe shoes.

So, with this new product, they can now wear pantyhose so that their legs look great, but … and here’s the best part … their toes will be bare, so they can wear their open-toe shoes the way the fashion experts tell them to.  Huh?  Huh?  Brilliant, right?

Boss:  OK, let me get this straight.  The women who …

Pitchman, interrupting the boss:  … dumbass women …

Boss:  Right, right.  The dumbass women who wear these things would have on real pantyhose that make their legs look, well, fabulous, all the way down the foot, but stop at the toes?

Pitchman: Yes, yes …

Boss:  OK, so to be clear, these …..

Pitchman, chiming in:  dumbass …

whatBoss:  Right, dumbass women, they go about their daily routines wearing, say, black pantyhose down through the shoe, and then their bare, white, pasty toes peek out to the world, and ….. I’m sorry, tell me again … why would any woman in her right mind do such an incredibly stupid thing?

Pitchman:  That’s just it.  They do incredibly stupid things.  We don’t even have to tell them it’s what the fashion experts agree with …  I mean, if we make this product, they’ll think it’s the thing, and they’ll buy ‘em and wear them.

Boss:  Yeah, OK, I’m sold.  Let’s do it.

 

hanesAre these people kidding?  I guess not, because even Hanes bought in to this concept (right), and their ad campaign actually reads:  “Hanes Silk Reflections Ultra Sheer pantyhose toeless design lets you wear sandals and open-toe shoes and show off your pedicure.”

OK, now I’ve definitely seen everything in this business.  I will have a difficult time trying to get these images out of my head now.

Readers, seriously now, is this the dumbest thing you’ve ever seen related to pantyhose?

 

In any case, it’s a new year.  And with it, comes renewed optimism that pantyhose will continue to make leaps and bounds toward returning to mainstream acceptance.

Already, we’ve seen some great signs, such as Vogue.com actually promoting the wearing of sheer pantyhose with open-toe shoes on fashion runways.  Don’t discount the significance of that.

And, with the growing fad of wearing sheer pantyhose or tights with open- or peep-toe booties making inroads, there’s definitely reason for increased confidence that we are taking the right steps forward toward bringing pantyhose all the way back.

It should be a fun ride.

Wishing you all “sheer” happiness, health and prosperity in 2017.

Oh, and by the way …..

new-act-iv-promo-1

 

Models dazzle in our NYC photo shoot


Robin Maryland, president, ActSensuous
Robin Maryland, president, ActSensuous

During the months of October and November this year, I partnered with an outstanding photographer to conduct a photo shoot with three professional models wearing our NewAct IV line of super sheer pantyhose for an “Autumn at Central Park in NYC” theme.

The idea was to make a new slide for the home page of the ActSensuous website.

A few (seriously, only a few) of the devoted readers of this blog have raved about the new slide, so I thought some of you might want to see more pictures from the sets among the three professional models.

Dinara kh

Originally from Moscow, Russia, Dinara’s professional modeling experience includes taking part in car shows, exhibitions and a bikini contest in Moscow.  Additionally, Dinara has been a runway model, performed in promotional modeling assignments, and she has stood in foot modeling gigs in New York.  You’ll see why the foot modeling.  Wow!

Besides all that, the 5’6, 110-pound, Eastern European beauty with olive skin has made her presence known in a variety of genres, including acting, dance, fashion, fitness, glamour, sports and stunts.  And, she’s been a host and spokesperson.

Here is Dinara in Central Park:

Daryann Danielle

Describing herself as “a natural performer since the age of 2,” Daryann is talented in various forms of dance, such as ballet/pointe, modern/contemporary, African, jazz, tap, hip hop and lyrical.

“As I grew in age and talent, I expanded my versatile abilities, going into the fields of modeling, as well as singing and acting,” Daryann tells us.  “As I continue to get older, I look to better myself and my career, while taking modeling, acting and dancing to the next level.”

The 22-year-old New Yorker is 5’4, 98 pounds and wears a size 0 dress.  Daryann performs in many genres, including acting, art, dance, fashion, fitness, glamour, hair/makeup, lifestyle, artistic, and promotional.  Additionally, she’s been a hostess and a spokesperson.

One of the things we loved about Daryann from the beginning is she wrote in response to our casting call:  “The shoot seems very classy and I am comfortable in pantyhose.”

Daryann in Old Westbury Gardens in NY:

Alisa Sharoikina 

Originally from Belarus, the 25-year-old is a professional psychologist and a freelance model who is passionate about everything she does.

Alisa’s list of projects includes acting, body paint, fashion modeling, fitness modeling, glamour, hair/makeup, lifestyle, lingerie, pinup, promotional modeling, runway and swimwear modeling.  Also, Alisa has been a spokesperson and hostess.

After the shoot, Alisa wrote:  “Just wanted to let you know that it was a pleasure to shoot for ActSensuous!!!  I fell in love with the pantyhose!  I’d be honored to be considered for future projects.”

Alisa in Central Park:

My deepest thanks to professional models, Dinara, Daryann and Alisa for representing ActSensuous with beauty, glamour and class.

The photographer

linley-1
Pro photographer, Linley of LawrenceNyPhoto, sets up a shot with professional model, Dinara, for ActSensuous during October 2016 at Central Park in New York City.

I have worked many times before with professional photographers, but this time, I was looking for someone new; someone with a New York state of mind.

I had been talking with a few of our customers in NYC, hoping that maybe someone knew of a good photographer, and my hunch paid off, as one couple who own a gift shop recently had professional photography done for their store’s catalog.  They highly recommended a fellow entrepreneur who also is a professional photographer, and that’s how I became introduced to Linley of LawrenceNyPhoto.   I pitched the idea of “Autumn at Central Park in NYC” to Linley, and he instantly jumped on board, bringing tons of energy, enthusiasm and professionalism to the project.

So I have to give a special shout-out to Linley, who truly deserves all the credit for pulling this thing off under a tight budget and a tighter deadline.  Almost single-handedly, Linley helped to identify and screen the best models out of many dozens based in the NYC area.   He also chose the venues, coordinated the shoots, handled all the little details, and along the way, delivered some fantastic photos.  Wouldn’t you say?

Again, my thanks to Linley.

Want to play?

Whenever I invest in a project for our website or blog, I always try to steer the business to one of our customers or loyal readers of this blog.  I enjoy keeping things in the family. Case in point, our website was created by a customer, David (and his wife, Sheri).

So customers, or readers here, sometimes, it pays (literally) to let me know what you do for a living, as I have lots of ideas in my head, many of which can turn into paying opportunities.   If you offer a special talent or skill set that could be useful in my campaign to bring pantyhose back into the mainstream of fashion, entertainment, and as a staple in American culture, and if you desire to cooperate on a project, please approach me.

Christmas promo

Finally, a note to all our customers from all over the world, in case you miss it on our website (http://www.actsensuous.com), we are running a Christmas promotion now through  Dec. 31:  Take 33% off  your purchase of at least 4 pairs of our NewAct IV.  Just enter coupon code Santa33 at Checkout.

Note: The coupon is for NewAct IV only, as Orig. Act IV, Act III, Act II, and our  NewAct IV-BP for our beauty pageant organizations’ delegates already are discounted to practically giving them away status.

Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas.