Style clothing in the 1950s relished from the abundance of varying types and colors of fabrics—nylon, rayon, wool, leather, and taffeta! I repeat: taffeta!. Women wore full skirts with poofy petticoats, mostly with snug fit waist lines. Shape and sheen also became major considerations in addition to bold patterns and colors. It was a decade that typified life after the World War II. It also determined how people recovered from rationing and transitioned to consumerism.
However, as the roles of women became more defined, so did their clothing. Outfits were sorted for specific purposes, for housework, running errands, maternity, social gatherings, and work uniforms. Hemlines were also conservatively below the knee and the little black dress became the rule for evening dresses. Certainly, there was a distinct element of conformity in the 1950s, and of traditionalism in the every day clothing for most women.
Today, 50s women fashion is either replicated or reinvented. Sometimes composed and refined, sometimes naughty and sultry.