Friday, 24 October 2008

A Brief History of

'How did you come to run a company which sells men's tights?' is a question I sometimes get asked by friends and acquaintances. Well, prior to 2004 (when we launched Legwear4Men), I would not have dreampt of such a thing myself. Basically, it started like this; back in the late 1980's, I got into cycling (mountain biking, to be precise) pretty seriously. I would go out every morning (yes, that's every morning!) at about 5:30 a.m. and cycle 20 miles along a cycle path which used to be a railway line, near my home, purely for exercise. Initially, I resisited the full 'clothing' (read Lycra) look, as I thought it looked silly, but soon found there was a good reason for it, so I reluctantly purchased the full hit; Lycra shirt, shorts and/or leggings, helmet, gloves etc., but drew the line at shaving my legs (as my cycling colleagues did). However, I soon found, that as well as looking very silly in shorts, my (very) hairy legs were causing my shorts or leggings to fall down all the time, which required me to stop and 'adjust' them periodically. 'Shaving your legs would soon stop that,' a friend said, so I (again, somewhat reluctantly) went for it, much to the amusement of my (then) wife, and found they were right; my shorts or leggings instantly stopped falling down! And it was much more comfortable that way. So, I have shaved my legs ever since (20-odd years). The tights came much later; I was searching the web one night about 10 years ago, (in the good old 'dial-up' days - NOT!) looking for clothing (as you do!) and found a web site with a banner which said something like, 'Men are beginning to discover something that women have known for years; that tights are a comfortable, practical garment with benefits for men as well' and went on to espouse the benefits of warmth, support, etc which tights can give. I was fascinated; 'Tights for men?' I thought. I was used to Lycra from my cycling; it wasn't too much of a step to include tights (as long as they were men's; I wasn't interested in wearing anything made for women) not least since my ex-wife had suggested, many years earlier, that I should try support tights to save my aching legs (I was on my feet most of the day at work) as she had found them to be beneficial, but I wasn't keen. Still, the seeds were all in place, so I thought, 'What the heck?' and ordered some. The rest, as they say, is history, and now I wear tights all the time; I haven't worn socks (by and large) for years. Fast forward to about 6-7 years ago, when I was chatting to a friend about how beneficial I had found tights to be, but was frustrated by the fact that I had to order them from far afield whenever I wanted more, as there was no one in the UK who sold them. To my surprise, he said, 'Well, why don't you do it (sell them)?' My initial response was 'Naaah!', but the more I thought about it, the more sense it made; I had a long background in retail, and more than a passing acquaintance with computers and the internet, so I went and had a chat with my brother (who was better paid than I was!) and discussed it; he thought it was a great idea, and lent me some money to get things started, and Legwear4Men was born! Since then, we have greatly expanded the range of makes and styles we sell, and now have an 'own brand' range of good value-for-money tights for men, made for us by a long-established hosiery manufacturer.

I will post as often as I can, and will keep things up to date with news and items of interest.

Please note, that as a UK-based company, we use the term 'tights' in the UK sense, not the American sense of opaque tights.


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