Dancers and actresses often need their costumes to multi-task, wearing a traditional pair of seamed tights if they are nylons, create saggy ankles- not a good look! Repro seamed tights are pretty sheer, and often performers are looking for more support in a pair of tights. Repro seamed tights are also expensive and hard to find in fuller figured sizes.
Many moons ago, i worked on a Canadian production of Show boat at the Prince Edward Theatre. Whilst there i learnt this sneaky trick for faking seamed tights, and i am currently doing this on the play i’m now working on in the West end. Whilst this trick doesn’t work for photographic shoots or film, as it doesn’t give the heel detail, it is a fab way to cheat a seam on a regular pair of support/dance and sheer tights.
Grab a reel of thread that’s the colour of the “seam” you want to create. I used a rich brown, because I need the “seam” to stand out onstage
Set your machine stitch selector to Zig zag
Set the Stitch width to the Widest setting, and the length to a shortish one aprox 2
Stretching the tights as you sew, zig zag over the back edge of your tights from the hip to the heel. This can take a little bit of practise, you don’t want the edge to be too fluted, or too tight. If the stitching is too tight it’ll break when worn.
Although close up the seam looks “stitched, once stretched it really does create the illusion of a real seam!
Watch my video clip on this technique here