the necessary infrastructure

vintage slip

Lately I have been dissatisfied with my underwear. Well, actually, just with the slips. They have been uncooperative, to say the least, and occasionally downright recalcitrant. Not the gorgeous vintage full slips (like this one, click on the pic to visit the eBay auction), the ones I found a whole mint new-with-tags lot of a couple years ago — those are fine, content to be used as nightgowns and to occasionally have a day out under a dress. It's the half slips that are giving me trouble. Well, the half slips and the tights, who together are having a little static electricity festival that Must Be Stopped. Not to mention that the half slips are deciding, en masse, either to revolt against the tyranny of elastic or to join the low-rise movement, and so their waistbands are getting saggier and saggier.

I keep hunting around online for nice heavy nylon slips, but they seem to have gone the way of the dodo — there are only a few specimens left, and they're all very expensive, or fugly, or both. (I should have paid more attention when The Sewist did her poll on slips.)

So I think I'm going to make some half slips. Heavy silk (from Thai Silks and Dharma Trading Company) are surprisingly cheap, especially in the quantities you'd need for a slip. I can find some nice lace trim, too, that will help weight down the bottom of the slip, and, not incidentally, look nice.

In fact, I think (since I have more than a month before I have to travel again) that I will spend this next little bit of sewing time making a few slips, and also sorting through the Large Plastic Bin of Tights to separate the holey goats from the whole sheep, and also arranging them by color, so that I don't spend the night before my next departure turning things upside down looking for the one pair of thick lycra tights that I *know* I had in teal …

Anyone have any slip-sewing tips, or sources for really nice lingerie elastic? I will make a followup sources and tips from the comments … and, with any luck, a picture of the slips I've made!

0 thoughts on “the necessary infrastructure

  1. Ah, yes, the dreaded tights and half-slip combo. The very thing that led to one of my most embarrassing moments ever. Picture, if you will, a young woman, new to her first post-college job. She wears tights and a slip under her skirt, as her mother taught her. She walks around doing her job for a couple of hours, creating more static by the moment, until finally, she has had enough. She removes both, and since it is a long skirt, she thinks everything is ok. But it is not. It seems that her boss borrowed her company car and took it to the carwash and the nice people from the carwash removed the tights and slip from the trunk and placed them on the car seat for her boss to find. Now, imagine the reddest possible face you can. That would be about what I looked like. It has been about seven years and I am still embarrassed by that incident.


  2. J. C. Penney sells a few half slips online, and last I noticed, at the stores, too. (Not silk — nylon, I think.) Our local Walmart and Leggetts (which is akin to Belks elsewhere) also sold them last time I thought to look.I personally have some older (vintage?) ones that I like, and some cotton ones.


  3. Thanks Anon and India and Vespabelle and Dorothea for the tip on the DKNY tights. I’ll be looking for them. Thanks La Belladonna too – I’ll be looking for L’eggs as well (although I don’t think I’ve seen any in years). And I never buy control top anything!Laura, thanks for the links! I will have a look at them.Sarita Raye and Raven, great advice on shopping at the ballet (active-wear) store!Oracle, I have worn old-fashioned (i.e from the 80s) leg warmers under a long skirt and with knee high boots. Even at 30 below, I am warm so I agree with the concept.You guys are so great!


  4. Any female garment made before 1970, always needs the proper under garments, or it’s a rag and doesn’t hang as it ought.


  5. Julia, I buy my L’Eggs tights at my friendly neighborhood pharmacy, where they hang in a rack on the wall. In Philly, at least, they may also be obtained from that Eternal Emporium of Style that is Rite Aid (where they also perch on a wall rack – right next to the Underpants in Packages).


  6. As a daily tights-and-skirt-wearing, zaftig girl, delurking to offer this source for inexpensive and not too badly-made tights from For less amply-endowed, http://www.onehanesplace also carries tights.Also FYI – received a couple of helpful hints emails which touted pinning small safety pins to the hem of your slip to reduce static. This does not work, at least in my overly-static-ky world.


  7. I know I’m coming a little late to this, but I made myself a flannel-backed satin half slip a oouple years ago, and it is a real standby all winter. It’s short enough that I can wear a knee length summer skirt with tights in November and still be comfortable.


  8. A great place on Ebay to find great slips is “sliplovin66” that’s without the quotes , of course.They have some slips posted right now and will be listing better and better ones as the year goes on. They have a collection of about 1500 slips from the 50’s to 90’s and beyond. They have about 100 vintage slips in excellent condition. Check them out. They are reasonably priced.


  9. Some of the sexiest slips I’ve ever seen is on this Japanese site. If you don’t know how to read Japanese. I’m going to tell you how to get thru the pages to get to the slips. First you have to go to: When the next page comes up, scroll down to the heading that reads “INNER” and click on the 2nd button down. When the next page comes up, scroll all the way down to the bottom. There will be the first page at the bottom and about 10 additional pages of Japanese lingerie. Make sure you check out all of the Sexy Full Slips in all of their glory!You will love every minute of it.


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