For the Gracious Lady, the wise grandmother, and the mature missus whose fashion taste veered away from the bright new things in the 1950s, she still found plenty of choices to dress well. Mature 1950s women could choose from the same offerings as young women or shop from specialty catalogs such as Lane Bryant, who designed clothing for the plus size, mature, and maternity customer.
Of these, the shirtwaist house dress in washable cotton was the everyday essential dress. Solid colors and small prints, plaid, and florals were the recommended choices. Necklines were high and modest with sleeves that ranged from mid-arm to 3/4 arm. Skirts on day and evening styles avoid the extra full and fluffy petticoat look for the flared but less fussy A-line or pleated skirt. A single slip was all that was needed under these simple dresses.
Suits and jacket ensembles were another favorite style of the 1950s Mrs lady. Short jackets such as the bolero top covered up arms a little, while longer loose spring jackets that matched dresses were a favorite year-round. Knit sweaters and cardigans were also a welcome layering look for informal occasions.
Below is a collection of catalog clothing marketed to the mature, senior, or graciously aging woman. This article on 1950s plus size fashions may also be useful.
For those needing to buy a dress with sleeves or one whose design is flattering on mature bodies look at the end of this article.
Shop 1950s Mrs. Dresses
These are our favorite 1950s clothes with sleeves, modest tops, mature prints, etc.