I was in 10th grade when I discovered stockings. Not “pantyhose” (which is what most people think of, completely confusing the descriptors). Stockings. Fully-fashioned, nylon or silk, toe/heel reinforced, garter belt required stockings. This discovery was almost more earth shattering than having sex for the first time a couple of years later.
Jenny was my inspiration. A senior at the parochial school I attended on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, she was the most sophisticated girl I knew. My affair with cigarettes began after countless times watching her smoke Benson and Hedges 100s while sucking on cinnamon Life-Savers.
There was something subversive about the way Jenny’s legs looked to my still innocent eyes, so smooth in her nylons, garter belt clipped to the tops stopping mid thigh concealed under our winter uniform of gray wool. I began to imagine what it would feel like, slippery, silky fabric against my own skin. Eventually, my thoughts and curiosity brought me to a small lingerie shop not too far away from the high school I attended.
Regardless of what the ladies staffing the shop thought about this wide-eyed girl with knee socks and book bag tentatively drinking in her surroundings, they graciously shared all manner of knowledge about legwear: stay ups or garter fastened? silk or nylon? seamed or plain? I was completely hooked; the majority of my allowance expended on an ever growing collection of retro glam intimates.
To this day, those early lessons hold firm. I still drool over a perfectly stitched seam trailing from the point of a French heel. The lack of availability for good silk stockings is a constant irritation. 3 garters per side on a belt are always better than two. And, most important, no dress or skirt set is complete without my special secret underneath, decorating my legs.
I adore being a girl.