April is here which means spring has officially sprung06:12:00
It's one of spring's most troubling conundrums. Black tights are a safety net, hiding a multitude of sins and hairy legs, as well as keeping you warm - which in UK springtime is indeed helpful. But if you leave it too long to keep on with your hosiery security blanket then you run the risk of looking like a killjoy, or worse a wimp.
Our summers are short, so it's best to squeeze out as many bare-legged opportunities as possible. Soon it'll be subzero temperatures again and you'll have no other option than to cover your legs entirely. Not all of us have the magical, cold immunity that New York fashion editors have - mythical creatures who really go without tights all year long.
I abandon tights from mid-March around about the same time that I develop a deep hatred of my winter coat, and the process of hoiking up my opaques for the millionth time. Although not brave enough to wear a skirt, I opt for a cropped trouser, jumper and white trainers. It feels much more spring-like that a mini skirt and tights, and is still reassuringly warm. Because if there's one thing we Brits know - even if it's warm enough to go for lunch outside, the temperature will have dropped by commuter hour at which point you'll be forced to shiver at your busstop. Which is why cropped trousers - whether jeans or otherwise - are a good bet. Same goes for culottes and dungarees. In my mind, once the tights have been shed, there's no going back. It's like admitting defeat against this cruel climate that I refuse to accept. It's a show of optimism.
Midi skirts are also a reasonable option. They require more maintenance - yes you'll have to shave your legs and maybe require a bit of fake tan, but it's doable. Also, everyone who lives in the UK - spare a smug wealthy handful who have managed to squeeze in a sunny holiday in March - has pale pasty legs. No one will think you're weird if you don't have perfectly bronzed legs - no, they will think you're a normal, real human.
Spring is here, and the tights are off. Who's with me?