molly & colleen hurford look at rockabilly fashion …
High hair, serious curves showing, and an emphasis on heavy makeup. Sound like a style right off of Jersey Shore? Well, thankfully, that isn’t what we’re looking at today. We’re looking at a style straight out of the ’50s that’s been sneaking its way back into the wardrobes of punks, hipsters, and even mainstream fashionistas. We’re talking about rockabilly.
If you haven’t seen Cry-Baby and fallen head over heels in love with the infamous “drape” played by Johnny Depp, or swooned over tough chick Wanda’s tight skirts (“I wouldn’t be caught dead in a full skirt,” she sneers at one point), then you’ve been missing out on a thoroughly awesome, consistently flattering, just obscure enough to be funky fashion trend.
The pinup girls of the ’50s are, ironically enough, fabulous role models for women today. Unlike the stick figure models of the ’90s and today, these women rocked their curves like they were going out of style. (Which, unfortunately, they were.) So if you’re blessed with some serious curves, rockabilly gives you a totally classy way to flaunt them. And if you’re on the other side of the spectrum and lack in the curve department, rockabilly can emphasize what you’ve got in an awesome feminine way that’s still completely kick-ass.
If you’ve never crooned along with Elvis while slicking back your hair, or attempted to style yourself as a classic pin-up girl, we have a few suggestions on how you can get started:
The Pompadour: This goes for the ladies and the gents! Whether you’re a guy and slicking back your hair like Elvis, or a girl pinning your hair back like Bettie Page, this is one style that guarantees you’ll stand out- or at least up — in a crowd. The one thing to be careful with when rocking the pompadour is making sure that you look classy, like a ’50s pinup and not like a reject from the Jersey Shore — so avoid using BumpIts or straightening your hair pre-poof.
Creepers: These thick soled shoes that had their start after WWII have since become staples of the rockabilly and pyschobilly wardrobe. They often have a fly checkerboard pattern, but basic black is always classy and utilitarian.
Pencil skirts or full skirts: In rockabilly, there are no micromini skirts. You have to rock either a full ’50s-style skirt or a pencil skirt that reaches just below the knee. We should also mention that these skirts can do double duty as classy office-wear!
Halters: Halter tops and halter dresses are perfect for the rockabilly pinup vibe. They always look vintage and classy while still being sexy, plus whether you’re well-endowed or not, they offer serious support. Just go for the real fabric versus the jersey print, and a sweetheart neckline makes it even more ’50s stylish.
Capris: Back in the ’50s, you wouldn’t catch most women wearing short-shorts. Hence, the rise of Capri pants. The knee-length style, especially with a high-waist, is a staple of a good rockabilly wardrobe — especially with high heels or platforms.
Tied-Up Tops: Borrow a guy friend’s button down, or snag one for practically nothing at a thrift shop, and knot it at the waist. Rock it with some capris, preferably of the high-waisted variety and you officially have a perfect rockabilly outfit for those days where you just don’t feel like dressing up.
Polka-dots: There are few patterns more rockabilly than polka-dots, especially if you add a splash of red to a black and white polkadot outfit.
Leopard print: We have just two words … Bettie Page.
Leather Jacket: The leather motorcycle jacket is a huge rockabilly staple, and is great for the summer to fall transition. Boy or girl, the jacket with tight jeans and a white t-shirt is perfect for a casual rockabilly look without any effort!
Short or U-shaped bangs: A hard hair style to pull off, but coupled with long dark curls, it automatically creates a cool rockabilly vibe no matter what you are wearing. This is not for the feint-of-heart, since these bangs are seriously tough to grow out. But if you want to embrace the rockabilly style with open arms, this is a good way to commit.
Matte red lipstick: It’s flattering on almost everyone and you will always look and feel like one classy lady when you rock the red lipstick. Another caveat though: the fastest way to ruin an excellent outfit is by looking messy, and if your lipstick is smeared, that’s the fastest way to go from classy to sloppy in record time.
Sailor… anything: Whether it’s a full-on sailor suit, an anchor necklace, or an old-school pinup girl tattoo, anything with that sailor vibe is great for that rockabilly style.
Zombies: A modern twist that we’ve noticed on classic rockabilly clothes is the use of material with cutesy zombie prints. It adds a fun twist the kicks you out of the ’50s and into the modern punk rockabilly pinup look. A little out there, but why not?