04 April 2022

Twilight Zone: Stockings VIII

s this is the first time in four years since I’ve posted..
[Ed: You posted in February!]
No I didn’t, that was you! You found the story and all I did was give you the go ahead to post it. Go and put the kettle on. This is going to be at least a two pots of tea post. That is if I can get it up and running.
[Ed: Your problem is it takes ages to get moving and then you ramble on and on and it ends up, by the look of the title, as an eight part trilogy!]
Stop complaining! And where’s me tea!?
[Ed: Which mug would Madam like?]
You know very well..
As said it’s been sometime. This is mainly due to nothing really happening on the Abi front apart from the usual rare opportunities to dress. Added to that in the last two years, due to MrsA having her weekly painting and theatre 'out of house classes' cancelled because of lockdowns, my very rare dressing 'in house classes’ were also cancelled.

As Ed: observed correctly, yes, again a post about stockings. But this time, more about my experiences with attempting to keep them up.

[Ed: As Madam is a Brit, Madam will be using the term suspenders and suspender belt for garters and garter belt. Also in general the term tights will be used to cover pantyhose, sheer hosiery and of course tights.
I won’t mention that Madam is also an Essex girl as it is irrelevant to this post.]

That’s bang out of order!

Please note dear reader that, to Ed’s: and everyone else’s relief, this will be the conclusion of my stockings saga.

[Ed: Believe it when I don’t see it!]

Going by the last few years I don’t see it either, as there isn't anything new in my daily routine legs wise. Even if, through either accident or design, I come fully out to MrsA I don’t think my limited ‘exposure’ in the cellar, even in my white stilettos, will change. Knowing about Abigale and seeing her around the house are two different things.

If any of you have followed my previous stocking posts, I mentioned that my phlebologist gave me my first pair of compression stockings. It didn’t occur to me at the time to try other colours. Their colour was not relevant as I was quite frankly just trying to get use to wearing stockings and not considering what colour they were.
But when I was at work I thought it would be a good idea to go for black as they would look just like black socks when my trousers would inadvertently slide up when sitting down. When I was ordering them I realised there were other colours available.
[Ed: See the story in Stockings V]

After that I started to work my way through all the colours in the chart except for the last two, Magenta Rose and Palm Green. Apart from the cost, they are far more expensive than the others, I think the colours are more suited for a number of generations younger than me..

As the rest of this post is about my experience with suspender belts and could be somewhat boring, I thought I would add a few pictures of my legs in some of the colours from the above Jobst chart..

[Ed: Please note that this post is in no way sponsored from Jobst.]
Was that necessary?
[Ed: No idea, you tell me.]
As you’ve heard all this before go and select a few leg pictures to scatter about below.
[Ed: That will take time as there are 7,625 pictures from the last 6 years to go through, most of which are just badly shot. Also as the pictures were not all taken in daylight but in the catacombs of the cellar, the colours will not always match the chart.]
Oh! Ok then do your best.
But first lets have another pot of tea..

[Ed: What’s all this flogging this stocking lark to death anyway. Haven’t you anything else to go on about?]
Well yes I have a post in the making which, as far as I can remember, doesn’t mention directly stockings or suspenders. Well at least there are no pictures of them.

Ok let's get on. I’ll back track a bit so as to get up to speed.


The reason for ‘all this stocking lark’ as Ed: puts it, is because I have to wear compression stockings to help my veins do what they should do. Unfortunately this 'should do' has been going downhill since about 16 years. The valves at the top of the legs have slowly given up and on top of that the other valves started to follow suit so I also developed varicose veins.
And as this wasn't boring enough I found out last summer that I have severe lumbar spinal stenosis (L4/L5/S2) which mixes in nicely with my CVI.

Over the years my surface leg veins have complained but thankfully my deep veins have stayed healthy and would take the brunt of the blood circulation in my legs when I eventually got round to having the varicose veins stripped.
Well, all things were going smoothly.."

[Ed: They do look smooth don't they. Must be all that elastane in them.]
Yes, 47% Polyether-polyurea copolymer but it's also because I shave me legs..
[Ed: My remark was about the stockings!]
So was mine..
As I was saying, all was going well until Spring19 when my veins really started to complain with bouts of thrombosis that had to be treated over a year with blood thinners. I won’t go on about the OP only to say the thrombosis problematic is still there but not so drastic as before the OP.

My suspenders timeline started at the end of 2015 when I ordered my first suspender belt from Rago (see left) which was recommended from one of my readers. Well it was the second one as the Welsh Post decided to keep the first one. (See the full story Stockings VI).
I know it's some time since that post but if any of you recall the suspenders had arrived but I kept them out of sight of MrsA. I finally go around to informing her that the first pair was lost and that I had ordered a new pair from another company (Sockingshq) which could send them directly to Germany.


After they arrived I wanted to wear them a few times before officially informing MrsA that they had arrived. I'm not sure why all the secrecy. I should have seen them as a medical 'support' to keep up my compression stockings and that's all.
I think my problem was, and still is, that fastening stockings to suspenders has always been for me an act of pure femininity. My adventuring into this realm was up to now, apart from my Airings here, a private matter. And now I was doing this ‘act’ on a daily bases in broad daylight even if they were only medical stockings.

In my mind it was all somewhat embarrassing, especially if MrsA would catch me infraganti bending over doing up the straps or unclipping them. Well one morning she eventually caught me in the act.

The caught in the act was interesting; it showed that MrsA hadn’t worn stockings in a very long time. As I was fastening my suspenders to my stockings MrsA came out of the bathroom, she looked at me and remarked “the straps go over the underpants!
I stopped and looked up.
I was a little taken back that she hadn’t come out with the ‘what are you doing!?’ phase. Thinking about it, it was obvious what I was doing and so I suspect she skipped it and went straight to the logistics.
No” I said, “under not over” and carried on pulling the straps down, through and under my underpants and fastening them. I explained the difference between adverts and practicability and of course she agreed.
With all this she didn’t give me the impression that she had a problem with it all and I realized this cloak and dagger farce was rather stupid. I told myself that I would be putting on stockings and suspenders for the rest of my life and should deal with it!

I could of course glue up my stockings all the time, but apart from the keep up functionality, I wear a suspender belt because I like to wear them!
Also a suspender belt, even with wear and tear, is in the long run cheaper than glue. They range from about 28-40€ depending on the number of straps and what I call, the frilliness factor. The Rago which are rather plain but with more material cost about 50€. A 60ml bottle of ‘adhesion lotion’ costs about 18-22€ and lasts about 30 applications (roughly 1 ml/leg).
Both have pros and cons. Gluing is not so fiddly and is quick as long as one remembers not to bend down too much before they dry otherwise you can start over. Also as it’s a sticky procedure it needs to be washed off every evening. I tend to glue when going out of the house and, just in case, carry a bottle around with me..

[Ed: Why not carry an emergency suspender belt in the coat pocket?]


Oh that would be fun. I go to take out a handkerchief and don’t realise until the last moment I had pulled out instead a pair of my cute silky suspenders!
On me Tod, no problem, but in company there would be some explaining to do. Especially after the first question ‘Are they yours!?’
No, I’ll rather stick to the bottle … no that doesn’t sound right … anyway you know what I mean..

Fastening suspenders can be time consuming, especially with contortions and my arthritic fingers. As I have mentioned before the straps don’t always hold, it depends on the strap tension. That’s why I strap mainly when I’m at home. When one gets free there are at least two others per leg as backup.

[Ed: Why not go for tights, would stop all this gluing and spontaneous strap uncoupling?]
I have thought about it and have decided to add a pair to my next buy. As you can see from the chart they have a slightly different colour range to their stockings. What also makes them interesting is there are two colours with a pattern, but I can just imagine the look on MrsA's face when I would come down the stairs in them..(sigh).
Tights have a different logistic than with stockings, a combined effort so to speak. You have to work alternately on both legs at the same time. With normal tights a little more complicated than stockings. But with compression level 2 (18–24 mmHg), I suspect it will not be an easy task getting them on. Compression stockings are bad enough.

[Ed: Whatever colour you choose for the tights you should have matching panties.]
Never thought about that..
Ok, as it’s you, I must have.
But its good that you brought it up..

[Ed: Why?]
New Post..
[Ed: Me and my big mouth!]

Well that was my experience with my first proper suspenders..

[Ed: Sorry, they were not your first..]
We are being fastidious today aren’t we?
Yes, there was another pair, but they were made for me by MrsA. Hence my reference to the Rago garters as ‘proper’.

[Ed: As this post will be more about suspenders than what the title suggests.
I think you can further elaborate on those first suspenders that were briefly mentioned in Stockings VI and in My first heels.]

That was sometime ago and all pretty hazy.
But if you think it fits here then let’s have another go at it.

It was the beginning of the 80’s and we had bought a VHS cassette of the film Rocky Horror Picture Show. We have always been fans of the show. The music and the story are quite brilliant and what made it unforgettable for me was seeing all those black high heels waving and walked about on.

[Ed: Not only the heels..]
Yes, the rest of their attire was also nice, but it was mainly the heels..

MrsA mentioned it would be nice to dress up for our private viewing at the weekend, as with the ardent fans at the cinema.
I was slightly taken back with this. I certainly would not have made the suggestion, well not out loud.
MrsA checked her wardrobe for appropriate accessories. The result was that we had to go shopping for a roll of black elastic band and black lace to make suspender belts and also a trip to the local drug store to buy black stockings.
I knew where to look as they are a part of the display with socks. Of course when I just so happen to past the display I am looking for socks and not eyeing the patterned tights and shiny stockings. Unfortunately we didn't find any with seams.
On returning home MrsA measured me up for my suspenders. While she spent the afternoon sowing I went through her multi-coloured collection of nail varnishes for a later painting session.
I was again surprised when it was suggested that I should wear my black patent leather heels.

[Ed: Although Madam keeps going on about her heel collection, these heels and a second pair are the only ones that are officially known to Madams misses as she bought them for Madam.]

So we got dressed and added a little mascara and lipstick. This was followed up by painting each other’s nails. On reflection doing each other's nails is something girls would do together. I’m not sure after so long if I showed my enjoyment in this one off bit of fun, or I tried to play it down so as not to give the impression that I was eager to do this more often.
MrsA decided she wanted a different colour per nail. I would have liked to have used only the colour matching the lipstick, but was just glad we were varnishing at all!
I must admit I was a little high with officially walking around our flat with makeup, coloured nails, suspenders, stockings and my matching black heels.
To date, a one-time experience.
As the film ran I think I was more occupied with my inner girl feelings and my appearance than taking in the film. As it was late when the film finished we left the varnish on until the next morning. We didn’t want the leftover smell of nail varnish remover on our hands throughout the night.
That was a weird feeling waking up to polished nails, similar to a nail weekend while MrsA was away (see Nails I). I would have liked to have kept them shiny until evening but I couldn’t push my luck after MrsA started to remove her own.


The feelings on the previous evening were complex and similar to now whenever I get the chance to dress. It’s a mixture of joy, nervosity, but not only of the getting caught kind, also sadness, homecoming, and a longing which I can’t really pin down. All this accompanied with a state of detachment as if I am an observer to what I am doing.

Although dressing sessions are strenuous/tiring with trying to get in and out of garments while taking a glimpse at the clock every five minutes, afterwards I’m again happy and somewhat content to have had the chance to recharge my girl batteries.

[Ed: Excuse me, but can we carry on. The focus at the moment is suspenders.]
Yes of course. May I remind you that you started me off on that tangent..

So now to the Rago suspenders and their performance. I bought this model because they had XL plus sizes. After measuring my waist I followed the size chart and ordered. I was thinking of ordering black but thought better of it. I didn’t want MrsA asking why black when all my underwear was exclusively boring in white. When they finally arrived the fit was good but as soon as they were put under stress they lost the battle to the pull of the stockings.
As I would need at least a second pair, I thought I better order the second one in a size smaller to see how they would cope. Unfortunately it was not that much better. It was ok when sitting but when walking around they would slowly fall down in sync with the stockings. If I had hips it may have worked. After a few weeks of having to go frequently to the restroom at work to rectify the situation, I officially vented my frustration to MrsA of the situation and mentioned that I would try my hand, sorry legs, with other suspenders.

I started to look at the other suspender belts on the Sockingshq site. They looked sexy as they should, but if they were more robust than the Rago I could not tell. This of course didn’t stop me ordering four; three in white and as wildcard one in black.

[Ed: Come off it! You had a good idea they would be useless for your heavy duty stockings didn’t you?]
Well yes you're right,
how could you be anything else...
I just fell for the lace and the little bows at the top of the straps. When they arrived I kept them under wraps until I had tried them on. I wanted to report a success at least with one of them before letting MrsA see them.

For my purchase I even got a gift of a pair of one size black stockings. Of course I tried them on when I got the chance with the black suspenders.
They laddered almost immediately..

[Ed: Madam's nails again!]
No! That's behind me now! As you very well know
I now wear silk gloves when I put on proper stockings.
Maybe they would have lasted a night out, that is if I ever went out..
[Ed: By the look of the gloves, maybe the Opera?]
Nice one.. But they need to be a black pair, to go with my LBD and heels.

Well after trying the different models funny enough the winner, if we can call it that, was the one in black! I let MrsA see the collection and the black stockings (pre-laddering). She was somewhat amused with it all and as I had hoped positive that I had found something at last to keep up the stockings. Actually they all worked better than the Rago which may have something to do with size, as I could only get them in a normal XL.
They were much tighter, but the material was silkier, and I have to say it, sexier than the Rago. But that’s the price you have to pay to keep ones stockings up!
It’s a shame that most suspender belts are either black or white. I did find one model that was coloured, but not unfortunately available in my size. Would liked to have tried to match them to my stockings.

Well wearing them became routine and they became a part of our normal wash program. Here they are air drying in the bathroom (Rago on the right end).

[Ed: Not really. Madam just hung them all up in a row to take the picture.]
As the suspenders sort of worked but not that well, I found myself sticking more and more. This was mainly to dampen the frustration of the repetitive uncoupling. The uncoupling is sometimes due to a lack of tension on the straps (e.g. at the front when sitting down) and/or a clip-ability difficulty due to the thickness of the stocking tops.

I have now in my collection four different variations in stockings not including colour. I have two different lengths: Petite (halfway up the thigh) and Normal (high thigh) and two variations of stocking tops: Sensitive (on the right) and French bijou (below). When I started out having to buy them I kept to the first pair I was given from my phlebotomist which was Ultra Sheer from Jobst in Petite and Sensitive. I don’t think she picked out this model just for me but it was probably due to only having this model in my size (Stockings I)

Later when I was branching out into different colours I inadvertently ordered Normal length instead of Petite. I found they went right up my thighs and looked better when glued, especially when I had on a short dress. After collecting enough Dutch courage I went for French Bijou. Wasn’t sure how MrsA would react to them until I could report that with the wider top they stuck better. Again my worries were unwarranted.

Navy Blue

As the suspenders were having a hard time keeping my stockings up, I thought more drastic measures were called for. As I have some experience with shape wear, especially corsets, I considered getting a girdle to hold up my stockings..

[Ed: Not just for your stockings.]
No of course not. I needed also something to keep my tummy in.
With a girdle it was unlikely that the stockings would win the tugging battle. I looked at the Sockingshq site and found a nice patterned one I liked, again from Rago and without really thinking it through I ordered it (see picture below).
After the little thrill I get when buying for Abi, I started to have reservations about getting it and wearing it ‘in the open’. I wasn’t really sure how MrsA would react to this further development in the stay-up battle. And on top of that I didn’t really have this time around a plausible reason for having one.
Ok later, if my stenosis gets worse, some form of support for my lower back in combination with holding up my stockings could justify wearing a girdle, but not at the present time.

So when it arrived I just packed it away with my Stash. I of course at the next opportunity tried it on. I must say I was mildly surprised how well it held me in without the feeling of being restricted in movement or when sitting down. Of course there was a feeling of constant restriction but a pleasant one letting you know what one was wearing.

Somehow when ordering I let Abi take over and it was only when I had it on that it dawned on me that with my thigh high stockings in no way could they be fastened to the straps on the girdle, as they went up and under the bottom of it!


Then I had an idea and exchanged my high thighs for a pair of my petite stockings and they were just the right height for the girdle’s straps. I spend some time in the combination while trying on some of my dresses. I was pleased that now my tummy was now not as prominent and also the straps held with all the undressing and dressing.

What also hit me was that I realised that the girdle is of course appropriate under dresses or skirts but not under trousers or shorts, unless that is, they are very baggy! I think I just got carried away here. Anyway I have now added another item to my shape-ware collection.

I order my compression stockings here in Germany and by my last order I just happened to find on offer a ‘stocking holder’ as they call them. It looked rather primitive and nowhere near as pretty as my others, but as it is made for use with my type of stockings I thought I would give it a try. The waist band is adjustable using Velcro as fastener and the clips looked a bit sturdier than the others I have.
In use the band stays up and the stockings are easier to fasten but the clips are no real improvement on my other suspenders. It’s either the stocking clip or the clip used to adjust the length of the strap that loses its grip and initiates an excursion to a secluded place to re-clip.

Well that concludes to date my suspender adventure.

[Ed: Aren’t you going to say something like
'The suspense-r's were killing me to the end'?]

No, but the girdle.
[Ed: Does Madam need any help with the zip?]


Would you, it won’t budge.
Ah, thats better!
Ta ever so.

By the way the gallery selection wasn’t bad.

[Ed: Thank you. Any legs wouldn't look
that bad in compression stockings.]

If you say so..
I don’t have any compression stockings in yellow.

[Ed: As if I didn’t know.]


  1. Talking to yourself again Abi?
    Oh, white stilettos. A true Essex girl then.

    Comedian Dara O'Brien had a hilarious routine about where the top of different types hosiery should come for a definition of 'sexy'. (Waist: no; mid thigh: yes; over the knee: yes, but slightly pervy; mid calf (pop socks): definitely Not sexy.)

    I do like the colour of those anthracite stockings. Not at all sure about the silver grey though.
    The only garter belts I have are rather cheap and flimsy affairs at least one of which is more apt now to slide down off my hips than to hold anything up. I have to resort to one of a couple of basques if I want to wear stocking and not have them go all Nora Batty on me after a couple of minutes. (The trials we have to put ourselves though eh?)
    I did succumb to buying a girdle (Playtex, even) recently. Partly because I'd long hankered for one (and a corselette, which I bought a few months before that) probably ever since secretly thumbing through the women's underwear section of my mother's mail order catalogues as a teenager.
    Fifty years isn't too long to wait, is it? And there's definitely something nice about being actively hugged - constrained, even - by your underwear

    1. Yes Ed: did get the upper hand a little more than usual. In the next post I’ll try and keep him in his place.
      After discovering TOWE I wondered if I sounded like that in my youth. I certainly didn’t look like the girls at the time due to not having the appropriate wardrobe when down the pub on Friday night!
      I don’t think anybody noticed that the silver grey stockings were not on the chart. They were a ‘limited’ edition and I was nosy how they would look. A bit festive but go well with my glitter Dorothy Perkins.
      I think I would define hosiery tops as sexy when they become visible only under certain situations/movements and then hidden again, just a glimpse and not in permanent view which I would find boring.
      I’m doing experiments at the moment to see if I have less back problems when sticking up my stockings or when wearing my new (the plain ‘ugly’ ones) suspenders. I have the feeling the thin belt is ‘biting’ into my back just were my stenosis is. There are other factors involved so this is going to take sometime to see if there is any correlation between belt and pain.
      Funny enough after posting I did have a conversation with MrsA about girdles and keeping up compression stockings. It was just generalisations. Will see if I can nudge it in the direction of my specific problem.