1950s shirtwaist dresses were worn with petticoats underneath to increase the skirt’s volume, and girdles to make the waist even smaller, creating a very dramatic look. They could also be worn mor casually without any petticoat, such shirtwaists were referred to as house dresses.
The sexier option for women’s dress was the wiggle or pencil skirt. The shape of the wiggle skirt is high and tight pleated waist, form fitting through hips, and slightly tapered through the knee.
Cardigan sweaters have never really been out of style because they’re so practical, but in the 1950s cardigans became a staple since they could be worn well with any style skirt. Cardigans became more decorative and elaborate with lots of beading details, specialty buttons, and designs. Helen Bond Carruthers and Bonnie Cashin were two designers who were known for their show stopping cardigans.