1950s Fashion

The 50s fashion consisted of shapes, colourful prints, voluminous skirts and tiny waists. There are two main silhouettes. These are the wasp waist with a full skirt and the slim pencil skirt. In the 50s, they believed that any look would suit any body type, the more womanly the better. The created curves on the women that didn’t have curves. They did this by adding belts, foundation garments and extra net and padding. The key styles of the 50s were petticoats and full skirts, pencil skirts and the sweater girl look.

Petticoats and full skirts were wide circular skirts or pleated skirts. These skirts were worn with petticoats to give lift and were worn in the day and in the evening. They were always mid calf length and never any shorter. They might have been a bit longer for evening wear. Petticoats were several layers of net and were starched for extra stiffness. For the evening thy would have been frothy chiffon in bright colours like green, pink and yellow.

Pencil skirts were narrow, fitted straight skirts. They were sometimes called the hobble skirt as they restricted walking creating the wiggle look. Pencils skirts fell from the natural waist with little excess fabric with a split in the back. This look was popular with all ages but was a more sophisticated look for mature women. This could have been paired with heels and accessories or with a shirt/jumper and with flats to create a more casual, fun look. The length of the skirt always had to be mid calf.

The sweater girl look was born in the 40s but carried on into the 50s. The aim of this look was to emphasise the conical shaped bust and was worn with a bullet bra.


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