means that each stitch is formed of two threads of yarn in such a way that one side of the fabric will present a surface of one yarn and the other side will present a surface of the plaiting yarn.

For many years by far the most popular substance for the manufacture of fully-fashioned stockings was pure silk which is the natural product of the silkworm. All man-made fibres for stocking production have in fact been invented as imitations and attempted improvements on the product of the silkworm.

Stockings are knitted from top to bottom and the top section of the stocking is technically known as the welt. The fashion at the moment for the welt of the stocking to be about 3½" deep. As the fabric is usually doubled, this means that the first 7" or so is taken up in producing the welt. In some stockings an additional portion about 1” long is knitted of strengthened yarn to produce an under or shadow welt. This is sometimes separated from the true welt by a line of open work stitches.

At the point half way down the welt where the fold is to be made, is a line of stitches or, as is technically called, a “course” which will have been knitted in a similar openwork stitch. This is the “picot” edge that is found on many stockings. Almost immediately below the last course of the shadow welt the thigh narrowings or fashionings begin. This narrowing of the fabric corresponds with the tapering of the human thigh.

On either side of the fully-fashioned stocking seam and a short distance away from it, small markings can be seen. These marks appear where stitches have been knitted together to reduce the width of the fabric.

These marks and the narrowing that they indicate continue for about 6" at regular intervals until the stocking is the right width for the knee section of the leg. Similarly, fashioning or narrowing is introduced into the knitting of the fabric to allow for the tapering from the calf to the ankle, and again these marks can clearly be seen.

The fabric of a fully-fashioned stocking is knitted with exactly the same stitches as those that are made in ordinary hand knitting on two needles. The most important difference in the method of knitting is that a row of stitches knitted on a fully-fashioned machine there is a separate needle for each and every stitch.