What Did Men Wear in the 1950s?

Men's attire in the 1950s, which remained relatively unchanged throughout the decade, featured suits, slacks, sport coats, sweaters, and porkpie and derby hats, along with fedoras. Those whose work involved more physical labor tended to wear uniforms that resembled military clothing. Fashion experts say the decade's fashion reflected a desire for conformity as well as consumerism.

Following the World War II-related rationing of fabric in the 1940s, the 1950s were a decade of relative excess. With no limits on fabric, clothing makers produced outfits with pleats and full collars made from wood and leather.

Suddenly clothing became a vital part of society and culture, indicating an individual's economic class.

Men whose jobs were white collar in nature tended to wear suits with a discernible waistline, single-breasted coats, pleated trousers, overcoats and oxford shoes. The tendency toward business attire spanned the clock with some men even wearing three-piece morning suits.

Where formal wear was concerned, men in the 1950s often wore white or ivory-colored dinner jackets.

Casual wear included corduroy or plaid jackets, chinos, cuffed trousers, Hawaiian shirts, Bermuda shorts, knit shirts and loafers.

Many young men in the 1950s adopted the preppy look, which favored All Star basketball shoes for footwear.