Monday, 8 July 2013

How To Dress In The 50S With Vintage Style Dresses

By Sisi Tsoi


In recent times it seems like we've been transported back to the middle of the 20th century apropos style. Some like to call it the Mad Men effect ; there's no denying that the hit drama set in 1960s Manhattan has had a major effect on both clothing and interior design fashions. Whether women are wanting to emulate Joan Holloway and Betty Draper, or are subconsciously wishing to come back to a period of business wealth ( tidily sidestepping the rampant misogyny of the day ), there's no denying that the retro styles have come back in a big way.

What are the benefits of this? Well, the shape and cut of dresses and skirts from the time are certainly aesthetic. Both flared and pencil skirts, the 2 main silhouettes are commonly flattering - and the shift dress, incontestably the classical form of the kids at the time - has maintained its renown thanks to its simpleness and true creativity. Before this time ladies were daunted from flaunting their legs, but with the sexual revolution and 2nd wave of feminism, the girls were ready to be in control of their own bodies, and that contained what they wore.

If you want to join in with the trend but are worried it's already on the out, brush away those concerns! At London Fashion Week, everyone's favorite punk grandma Vivienne Westwood, showcased a collection that has been described as 'fifties housewives on acid' - in the best sense, of course! Perfectly fitted dresses, neat blouses paired with pencil skirts, and retro bathing suits reminiscent of Marilyn Monroe were seen on the catwalk to much excitement. Westwood showed us that you can keep the classic shapes of the mid-century pieces, but update them in other ways - through color, prints and accessories. Quirky plaids, brave baroque and kooky berets were all in tow, confirming that for this dame of the fashion world, it's still all about having fun.

The best part about vintage style is that you don't have to splash out to get in on the look. Yes, there are always people willing to max out their credit card on the designer threads, but there is really no need if you're more budget conscious. Thrift and Consignment stores are treasure troves of vintage clothing; you won't always find something perfect so be prepared to put in the time and visit them often.

Start to know the staff and tell them the kinds of pieces you like - if you get on well, they may even put things aside that they know you will appreciate. Scour eBay and etsy for bargains and play with the search terms incase things are misspelled or crucial details are omitted. Remember to keep an eye fixed on the high street as designer influences are appearing their quicker and quicker every year.

It has never been easier to find your perfect vintage dress so get to it and make your mates envious ; when they ask you where it's from, say 'It's Vintage ' with a smile and be safe in the knowledge that they can't copy your superb look!




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