My love of the AMC show MadMen inspired my interest in 50's and early 60's fashion. After World War II which is the timeline MadMen starts from and continues through, fashion changed. Gone were the restrictive bare looks of the 40's, the big shoulders, knitted sweaters, sheaths to the ankles and the ever infamous zoot suits were from the era!
Gorgeous, pretty, opulent was the 50's fashion response. The hourglass shape with fitted body, small shoulders, cinched waist, full skirt and high heels. The post war boom in the world economy produced a wealth of materials to be used and fashion became accessible even to the woman of limited means. Taffetas, lace, satin, chiffon, beading, netting, and nylon were used indiscriminately on all formal and evening wear.
Dresses were made with a more feminine cut, low necklines, intricate details and accessories were added and included as part of fashion: leather jackets, denim, scarves, costume jewelry, fashion bags, stockings.
Sounds like my kind of era! Poodle skirts, bobby socks, slim skirts, collared dress shirts with wide belts, hats and more hats and gloves to match any outfit. Those were a given in the fashion of the 50's and early 60's.
Below you'll find items gathered through my hunts of Etsy and are part of my interpretation of what 50's/60's fashion represented. Enjoy!
No one can deny the timeless, elegant poise and fashion sense of the late Jackie Kennedy. She brought to our attention the importance of the adage 'less is more.' Her Francophile was brought under scrutiny when her costumes and formal dresses were mostly from the fashion houses of Givenchy, Chanel and Balenciaga which she deftly silenced when she proclaimed her allegiance to American fashion designer Oleg Cassini, who then designed most of her formal dresses.
Over the span of her life, Jacqueline Kennedy made popular Chanel jackets, a-line skirts, those
dark oversized sunglasses (my faves), turtlenecks, wore little fur, even less jewelry, and loved her black and white combos, form fitting jeans and Jack Rogers sandals (look those up, very stylish!). She truly is the epitome of timeless and as Rod Stewart was quoted (not sure if
it was about her, though) "true style does not age but remains forever young."Amen.
Celadon dress by Oleg Cassini
Elizabeth Moss as Peggy