Kiley Beck prepares for interview. Photo: Facebook
Pantyhose, pantyhose, where art thou pantyhose? The word "pantyhose" even seems archaic. Bonus points if your mom still refers to them as nylons. These shiny footed spandex of terrors seems to be something of the past, but some pageants actually still require their contestants to wear them. Some things may never change, but fashion sure does. Being fashion-forward and trendy while wearing pantyhose may seem like it's not possible, but it most definitely is! (Read: Can Panty Hose Make You Lose a Pageant?) If you're competing in a pageant that still requires pantyhose, keep calm and get trendy. Here are some tips on being fashion-forward while wearing a clothing item that, at times, can seem like we dug it up from titleholders past.
It's all about style
If you want to be trendy while sporting the nylons, you have to start with the style of the interview outfit. While a pageant that still requires pantyhose may not be too keen on super edgy jumpsuits, two-pieces or even pants in general, the style is still very important.
Try looking at celebrities with professional and modest style for inspiration. A great style icon to follow is the Duchess herself, Kate Middleton. A quick google of "Kate Middleton fashion" will reveal interesting necklines, trendy silhouettes, and a whole slew of style inspo.
Plus, she is often photographed wearing suits! This is a plus for all of those girls out there looking for a modern twist on a classic style. Be sure to pick a style that is in line with the pageant, pushes enough boundaries without overstepping them and, above all, flatters you.
There's no sense in looking cool if your outfit is wearing you, or even worse, swallowing you whole! One of the trendiest styles now is the bell sleeve. A small, more peplum-sized sleeve can be the perfect mix of modest and trendy. Balance is important in such a situation!
2017 North Carolina/South Carolina/East Coast Miss American Coed (MAC) pageant orientation. Photo: MAC Pageants Facebook
Bye-bye shiny suits
If you're in a pageant that requires pantyhose, they may require, or strongly suggest, interview suits. However, be warned. Shiny suits are NOT trendy. These are literally the same suits your mother competed in when she won her first pageant.
Shiny satin suits should be avoided like the plague! Believe it or not, there are actual fabric trend reports that tell you exactly what the latest and greatest fabrics are. These are somewhat hard to find and usually reserved for industry insiders, but we've got you covered!
Knits are very popular, and not just in the pageant world, but in contemporary fashion as well. People want to be comfortable and fashionable, and a great knit will do that! Try a knit suit instead of a satin suit. This fabric can take an outdated suit to a more modern feel just like that. (Read: Should I Wear a Dress or Suit For Pageant Interview?)
Mixing and matching
Mix it and match it to shake it up in interview! Have you heard of color blocking? Color blocking is the juxtaposition of two opposing colors to create a visually appealing pattern. Use color blocking to bring your interview outfit out of the fashion don'ts and into the fashion do's.
Mix and match colors, shapes and silhouettes. You can even mix and match prints for something a little more daring. However, be wearing of mixing patterns. If not done properly, it can come off overbearing and a bit tacky. If you're fashionably inclined, get a professional to help you. (Read: How to Dress for Pageant Interview as a Teen)
The best things to mix and match are small details on your interview outfit. This can be a piping detail with a button detail. These small details can make huge differences.
Photo: Miss American Coed (MAC) Pageants Facebook
When in doubt, custom it out
If you are struggling to find an interview outfit that is on trend, not shiny satin, has a great fit and is not going to wear you, then you may want to consider getting something custom made.
A custom-made interview outfit can ensure that it's everything you want and nothing you don't. You can find a fashion designer in our directory. (Check out: Pageant Retailers)
Putting your best foot forward
Moving forward, if you want to stay trendy while wearing granny's secret to great legs, then you have to compromise. Find modest style inspiration, and pick a style that mixes current trends with classic ones.
Be mindful of the fabric of the outfit. Shiny satin instantly makes an outfit look dated. Try a more modern fabric, or maybe try some hip new man-made fabric all together.
Mix it up! Mix patterns, colors, and trims to put a fresh spin on something that's gotten a little stale. You'd be surprised what big differences small changes can do.
Always remember, if you really want to be super on-trend, just be confident! Confidence will never go out of style! What is your advice to stay fashion-forward while wearing pantyhose? Let us know in the comments below!
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