To get the fullness under your 1950s swing dress, you’ll need a crinoline petticoat with layers of ruffles and tulle. In the 1950s, women wore at least one tea length petticoat or crinoline slip to add some fullness. The fancier the occasion, the more crinoline skirts were worn. It wasn’t unusual to wear 3 or 4 layers of 50s petticoats! Some women also wore hoop skirts (sometimes called cage skirts) for even more fullness, though they were difficult to sit in and prone to flying up in the wind.
Today, most repro and vintage inspired dresses and skirts don’t need many petticoats. One thin crinoline slip will add enough volume to still be modern, while larger full petticoats will create a more dramatic 1950s rockabilly style. Naturally, it is fun to wear a crinoline skirt in a unique color under your dress as well as ruffled pettipants or bloomers. The crinoline skirt length can vary from tea length’s mid shin, to at the knee (most common), to above the knee (seen in the ’60s).
While vintage 50s petticoats were made of a soft nylon, many new and cheaper petticoats will be stiff and scratchy. Some of the softest repro brands are Malco Modes and Banned. Do your research when shopping other brands. Wear a pair of pettipants, bike shorts, silky stockings, or a thin slip between your legs and the crinoline skirt for the most comfort. We have handpicked these petticoats for their affordability, softness, and comfort. Many go to up 50” for plus sizes. Choose from any of these crinoline petticoats for the vintage ’50s look you desire.
Read more about the fascinating history of 1950s petticoats here.
Crinoline Skirts and Slips