Is pantyhose making a comeback in black?

This morning on Live! With Regis and Kelly, co-host Kelly Ripa paired black pantyhose with a chiffon, polka-dot dress and red heels, explaining that she switched up her usual "childlike" tights out of solidarity with StuckInHose, a guy tweeting his adventures in hosiery since promising a female co-worker he'd wear nylons under his pants.

"I'm not sure why," she told Regis. "You know, it's only 140 characters; we can't get into the why. But every day he comments on my leg wear and he's been feeling like my tights have been too dark and too childlike, so StuckInHose, this one's for you."

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But what if Ripa's really on to something and it's time to ditch the kiddie tights and slip into something more mature?

My first job was selling hosiery in a small New Jersey department store, and I knew everything there was to know about hose: sandalfoot vs. reinforced toe, Jet vs. Barely Black, control top or non-control top, etc. I was also forced to wear hose every day, even in the summer, so it brings back some very uncomfortable memories. They snag, they itch, they're tight, and your lady doesn't get much room to breathe.

But there's no denying a pair of legs looks better in hose, especially black hose. Take Melanie Griffith (sans sneakers) in Working Girl. Or The Graduate's Mrs. Robinson. Or Mad Men's Joan Holloway. Hot, hot, hot!

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Designers showing at New York Fashion Week have the same idea. Douglas Hannant incorporated the look into his glamorous, Roaring '20s-inspired runway show, as did Theyskens' Theory, pairing sheer black hose with shorts, a look I could definitely get into this spring.

I like an opaque silhouette -- black skirt, black tights, and black pumps (or a pop of color for fun) -- but it's so wintry and I'm so sick of seeing it in New York. With warmer weather approaching, I think spring's chiffons, florals, and chambray would look great with a pair of hose.

Pantyhose: hot or not?

Written by Lauren Flynn Kelly for CafeMom's blog, The Stir.

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Image via Hanes