Just shiver and bare this trend

November 18, 1999|By THE HARTFORD COURANT

There is always a little suffering on that rocky runway toward beauty.

The latest fashion ripple? The bare leg. Absolutely nude. No fair cheating with sheer or opaque nylons. We're talking no stockings. No security blanket to mask your ghostly gams or shield your razor-nicked knee.

We're talking skin. Shivering skin.

"It was freezing out today, and I had on a leather skirt and leather boots, but I had no stockings. I was freezing! And I thought: This is kinda nuts. But hey, this is the look," said Lauren Ezersky, who, as fashion and beauty reporter for Paper magazine in New York, has observed a growing number of women going stockingless. "The nude-leg look seems to look right for some reason. Everything today is sheer, opulent, beaded. The leg can't interfere with that."

The naked-leg message was launched on the runway several seasons ago but really caught on this past spring and summer, when stylish gals heave-hoed their hose to take advantage of strappy sandals and sexy skirts. Jennifer Lopez, Mariah Carey, Gwyneth Paltrow, Sarah Michelle Gellar and Courteney Cox are all sporting bare legs, even as we transition to fall. Bare calves could be seen everywhere during the recent New York collections for Spring 2000, setting the no-hose bar for Milan, London and Paris.

But as a fashion statement, unencumbered lower limbs were cemented by the sirens of HBO's hit "Sex and the City." Carrie, Charlotte, Samantha and Miranda established flesh as the year's definitive style trend. None would be caught dead covering her bruised shins and lacquered tootsies with stockings.

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