Whether you love unique statement pieces, can’t stay away from hand-crafted accessories or are just an all-around mermaid fanatic like us (surely we’re not the only ones stocking up on mermaid swimwear?), we have fantastic news. We’ve just found the ultimate complement to your mermaid nails and show-stopping mermaid hairstyle. And Ariel would tooootally approve.
Introducing MERMAID TIGHTS! Dreamed up by Daniel Struzyna, the talented young designer behind the small German label Tinkercast, the eye-catching tights are meticulously hand-crafted and almost too pretty to wear. Almost. Now you know exactly what we’ll be sporting to any possible viewing parties of the Little Mermaid‘s live action debut!
While some of the fish-scale tights are quite whimsical and pretty, others lean toward costume-y (in a good way), with tiny fish fins. “My basic inspiration was my lovely girlfriend,” Daniel tells us in an interview from his Dusseldorf home. “She’s a huge mermaid fan — we both have swimmable mermaid fins and use them as often as we can! Last Christmas, I wanted to make a special handcrafted gift for her. I thought about a fashionable solution to [be able to] wear 3D mermaid scales without glueing them to her skin.”
A fine arts student, Daniel (who’s pictured above rocking a sparkly black and silver merman version) was no stranger to working with different fabrics and materials, and “after a few experiments, I found out that tights would be the perfect base and silicone the best material for the scales.” Once he had all the necessary pieces picked out, the tricky part began. “It took a lot of trial and error to fuse both together!” he admits.
Pouring his heart and soul into the project, he eventually succeeded at finding the perfect crafting process, and now the pretty tights are selling out in seconds. Daniel restocks his Etsy shop every working day at 2pm German time (that’s 8am in New York) — totally worth the early wakeup call, if you ask us. Due to all the time (and love) it takes to create a single pair, he’s only able to make two or three pairs a day.
Working without any assistants, Daniel spends four hours hand-crafting each pair, which retails for 62€, or about $69 USD. “I sculpt the scales and make a mould to cast the scales in silicone. The rest is my secret!” he teases. The process of fusing the silicone scales to the tights is a delicate one and requires the most attention — but it doesn’t even compare to all the attention you’ll receive while wearing them.
As @gkitkatmeow, a seriously happy Etsy client, explains: “Fair warning, people will ask to touch your legs while wearing this product and the looks on kids’ faces are priceless.” And it seems celebrities are taking notice too!
“Someone wrote me a message and told me that Ashton Kutcher shared my mermaid tights,” says Daniel, recalling the moment he discovered the impressive celeb shoutout. “My first thought was whether there’s someone else with his name,” he laughs. “But I checked Ashton Kutcher’s Facebook page and couldn’t believe that such a famous person shared something from my small label.”
So what’s next? Right now, Daniel is focused on making fans happy by producing as many mermaid tights as he can. He’s also accepting commissions, you mermaid fanatics. Next up, he plans to unveil mermaid leggings. And after that? Perhaps this declaration of love can serve as hint of what’s to come: “I love all mythical creatures, like fauns, elves, fairies, demons, dragons and, of course, mermaids.” Hmmm, fairy-approved accessories? Yes, please!
Will you pick up some mermaid tights? Tweet us @BritandCo.
(h/t Bored Panda; photos via Tinkercast)