Photos and fashion trends from the 50s

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dandridge sisters

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The debut of Christian Dior’s famous New Look collection in 1947 marked the beginning of modern fashion history as we know it. With frame-fitting designs, feminine accessories and opulent details in the foreground, the 1950s gave birth to a new take on glamor. Stepping into the decade with elegance and sophistication, women turned to form-defining silhouettes like puffy tea and poodle skirts – and experimented with pants in the process. While everyone looks to the past decades for style inspiration, it was the 50s that led to some of fashion’s most memorable designs.

If you look at the fashion of this time, it is clear that women chose a dressier and more refined version. From crisp bespoke skirts, opera gloves and all the many hats, people of the 1950s were always sure to add that little extra something to their look to really take them to the next level. A prime example, iconic black singer Dorothy Dandridge is known for her mermaid-style dresses and glitzy embellishments. On the other end of the spectrum, style muses like American costume designer Edith Head presented a more minimal approach, accented by chunky pearl necklaces and round-rimmed glasses with lightly tinted lenses. Whatever your personal style, there is a decade of great inspiration to choose from.

Ahead is a selection of photos from the 1950s that showcase the ostentatious style of the era. From models, singers, actors and everyone in between, this list has a bit of everything.

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