With the weekend getting closer, many already have their Goodwood Revival costumes already. However, for the not so organised amongst us, we have prepared some 50’s costumes ideas for women.
The 50’s were instrumental in the fashion world. The world had largely recovered from World War II, meaning that new technologies, music and fashion were all prominent features in the news. During the War, designers were warned not waste materials as they may be needed for servicemen’s uniforms. This meant that designers had limited resources and had to cut back on ‘frills’ and pockets.
The start of fashion in the 50’s was actually created in 1947 by Christian Dior. The ‘House of Dior’ collection went down in history as the post war ‘new look’. The signature shape of the ‘House of Dior’ was a below the calf full skirt, pointed bust, small waist and shoulder line. Dior stated that skirts should only ever be 12” or 15” off the ground, then nipped in at the waist. Strapless designs were created for evening ballgowns as bust-lines were accentuated and waistlines raised.
After having such limited supplies during the War, the feminine look was really prized, with long gloves and pearls becoming more and more popular. As the look became even more popular, there were different alternatives created. By the mid 50’s, the wiggle dress had also been designed and was becoming increasingly popular. The wiggle dress is defined as being narrower at the hem line than it is at the hips. The narrowness causes your legs to keep close together at the knees, causing a ‘wiggle’ as you walk.
Much of 50’s fashion is still popular today. The 50’s was all about independence and freedom. The war was over and this was the era of mass produced clothing and standardised sizes. Women also started to wear trousers more, having been forced to during wartime. Unlike during the War when women were forced to wear their husbands old trousers, trousers were actually designed for women. These included pedal pushers, Bermuda shorts and tapered leggings. It was finally acceptable for women to wear the same as men. The 50’s was really a decade of change and innovations for fashion, which led well to the most radical era for fashion, the 1960’s.
For Goodwood Revival costumes and any other fancy dress needs, then visit the Mad Hatters Fancy Dress website.