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1950s Vintage Dresses

May 2, 2015

1950s Vintage Dresses and the wiggle dress has never gone out of fashion and there must be a perfectly good reason for it, just like there is for why denim, leather jackets and Capri pants are still doing the rounds.

As far as 1950s vintage dresses are concerned, the wiggle dress is one of the best and still as popular as ever.

1950s Dresses

This is how you do it

This is how you do it

1950s Vintage Dresses-The wiggle dress

The wiggle dress clings to the body in all the right places, and it works for all body shapes, regardless of whether you’re small and thin, or large and curvaceous.

It’s the dress for all seasons and all occasions and its good for the office as it is for the evening. It’s the perfect dress for wearing to work and to wearing to dinner later without having to change outfits.

But what do we know about where this dress came from, how did it evolve into the vintage style dress that’s still copied today? The wiggle dress is popular with the non-vintage wearing crowd too who are happy to wear retro copies.

Marilyn does the wiggle dress

Marilyn does the wiggle dress


The wiggle dress was at its height of popularity in the 50s and 60s and it was a simple sheath dress that fitted from the top the bottom with defined waist and skirt that reached the knee or just below.

It could contain a slit at the back or small pleats. It was also renowned for having a hem that was considerably narrower than the waist, therefore creating the wiggle when a woman walked.

The dress was a sexy and powerful look which when worn well and with the right accessories could create a striking silhouette.

Underwear was shapely and large breasts, hips and a tiny waist was fashionable for women and if even if you weren’t well endowed enough to fulfil the criteria, underwear would save the day.

Elegantly turned out-1950s Vintage Dresses

Elegantly turned out-1950s Vintage Dresses


It was lingerie that helped to create the hourglass figure and not the wiggle dress alone. The underwear was key to pushing and flattening down areas of the body so that the essential hourglass shape was discernible in clothes.

There were bras, (bullet or conical), knee length petticoats, panty girdles, garters and of course the slip.

Once the tight sheath dress was pulled over and the crucial shape accentuated appropriately it was time for the accessories.

Pointy heels, and if a wiggle dress came in a plain block colour then the bags could be rich in detail to compliment the whole outfit. Shoes were plain, but fell in line with the dress, sharp and well filled. Your feet filled the shoe perfectly.

1950s Vintage Dresses-Waspish waists and hour glass shapes

1950s Vintage Dresses-Waspish waists and hour glass shapes


When you wore the wiggle dress you simply felt glamorous and regardless of shape, in the wiggle dress you were always beautiful.

If you’re doing the wiggle dress then a vintage one is always the best way to pay homage to this dress, and to give yourself that gorgeous shape.

You may find darts and zips on original 1950s Vintage Dresses that you won’t find on a more modern retro version, but it just feels better for it.

If you wear one today, the right underwear is crucial – it doesn’t have to be 50s style if you find it uncomfortable, but beware of underwear that’s too tight or creates VPL (visible panty line), at the very least you want something that is discreet and doesn’t draw attention away from the dress.

1950s Vintage Dresses-The tiny waist and exaggerated hips

1950s Vintage Dresses-The tiny waist and exaggerated hips


Don’t reveal too much cleavage, a little is enough. Try to avoid creating a complete 50s look and go for more modern accessories and hair – a truly vintage 1950s wiggle dress with modern shoes, bag and hair is a really sharp look, great for dinner, cocktail parties and the office during the day.

Hold your posture upright, make sure your shoes fit perfectly and you’re good to go. This is one 1950s vintage dress with plenty of life in it.