The 1940s were a romantic decade defined by swing dancing, big band music, and poised sophistication. The 1950s were an era where women celebrated their femininity and ladylike elegance. Mid-century clothing was incredibly charming and impeccably designed, which is why fashion trends from these decades are definitely making a comeback.
Read on to learn more about fashion from the 1940s & 1950s clothing
as well as how to incorporate stylish retro pieces into your wardrobe.
The Fashion of the 1940s
During the 1940s, World War II changed the landscape of society. For the first time in history, women were working outside of the home and taking over traditionally masculine roles. The clothing women wore reflected this cultural shift.
Rationed fabrics meant that fashion had a more utilitarian appearance. Tailored suit jackets with square shoulders were paired with pleated skirts that ended just below the knee. It was during this time that women wearing trousers or slacks became much more commonplace. Pants with high waistlines and wide leg openings paired beautifully with delicate blouses and strong shoulders, both of which were decidedly in style.
In the late 1940s clothing
, women’s fashion maintained its conservative nature. With that said, the end of wartime meant far more choices when it came to fabrics. Women began wearing vibrant color combinations and dresses covered in delightful patterns. Polka dots, plaids, and floral prints made their debut and remained in fashion for most of the mid-century.
The Fashion of the 1950s
Just as in the 1940s, bright colors and vibrant patterns were a favorite of women everywhere in the 1950s. After all, most women during this decade had lived through both the Great Depression and World War II. The 1950s were a far more carefree time when women could finally afford fine clothing. They embraced this by wearing eye-catching colors, dramatic silhouettes, and grand sweeping skirts.
Women’s fashion became far more ladylike during this decade. Silhouettes were especially influenced by the designs that walked the runways in Paris. Most notably, Dior’s “New Look” - which featured elegant dresses with rounded shoulders, cinched waistlines, and full A-line skirts - became incredibly popular with women everywhere. These styles created a curvy, hourglass silhouette and were inherently feminine in design.
Fashion from the 1950s
also had a delightful dichotomy. While modesty and simplicity reigned supreme, women were also starting to celebrate their sex appeal. Bombshells from Hollywood’s golden age were ushering in a new era. Because of actresses like Marilyn Monroe and Jayne Mansfield, curve-hugging dresses with daring necklines came into fashion.
Incorporating Mid-Century Fashion Into Your Wardrobe
The clothing that came out of these decades is truly timeless. As fashion continues to become more casual, there’s no better time to embrace the fabulous femininity that women exuded during the 40’s and 50’s. Our gorgeous collection of clothing inspired by the 1940’s and 1950’s allows you to infuse your wardrobe with a sense of old-fashioned elegance.
Casual dresses with polka dot patterns will make you feel like a poised 1940s sophisticate. Stylish swing dresses from the 1950s are perfect for sipping cocktails at a social soiree. Or, choose a curve-hugging frock to feel like a true silver screen bombshell. All this and more is available in our stunning collection of 1940s and 1950s clothing.