Early 1950s Theme Wedding Styles

Written by cynthia clark
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Early 1950s Theme Wedding Styles
An early '50s wedding allows a bride distinctive options to create one perfect day. (Stockbyte/Retrofile/Getty Images)

An early '50s theme wedding presents many options to express the personality of the bride and groom. Choices for themes range from playfully retro to formally elegant. Regardless of the theme chosen, an early '50s wedding makes the couple's wedding day that much more memorable for themselves and their guests.

Hollywood Glam

The glamour of Hollywood bombshells, such as Marilyn Monroe and Jayne Mansfield, sets the tone for a formal celebration. Men in the wedding party can dress in 1950s-style tails, while fur-trimmed bridesmaids dresses go with the bride's off-the-shoulder gown with a wiggle skirt.

Recreate make-up and hair styles for the big day and for a bride's wedding eve with her attendants. Find a photographer skilled in pin-up girl photography to permanently record their '50s glamour.

Decorate the reception area with silk, satin, and faux diamonds and pearls. Consider one of Grace Kelly's favourite menus for entertaining, as recalled by FoodTimeLine: She personally selected caviar blinis, duck a l'orange, French-style green beans, hearts of palm salad with a vinaigrette, fruit and cheese.


A rock-and-roll theme is an obvious choice for a '50s-style wedding. The bridesmaids' dresses could be as simple as poodle skirts and white blouses. The men in the wedding party should wear suits with thin ties or jeans and white T-shirts under letter jackets and should slick back their hair.

Flower girls can drop flower petals and paper musical notes as they dance down the aisle. Hire an a-cappella doo-wop group to sing the bride down the aisle. Rent a jukebox or book a '50s-style band to entertain at the reception.

Set the tables to mimic a '50s diner. Reshape scratched long-playing albums over a metal bowl in a low-heat oven to hold the floral centrepieces. Design '50s-style menus to double as the place cards.

Greased Lightning

Sweet innocence weds the tough greaser in a fun-filled atmosphere. Hot-rodder and biker guests show up in their best leather and jeans. Sweet girls wear soft make-up and hair in ponytails or scarves, while the biker chicks have their hair done up and wear red lipstick and blue eye shadow. For the reception, rent space at a local high school or make private arrangements with a drive-in theatre, a carhop restaurant or a carnival. Arrange for a classic car and motorcycle club to park its restored vintage beauties outside the venue for atmosphere and creative photo opportunities.

Beach Party

Take the early '50s wedding seaside. The bridal party dresses in traditional '50s daytime attire of men in suits and ladies in full-skirted dresses with hats and gloves. Design the bridesmaid dresses with removable skirts to reveal coordinating retro capri-pant beach wear. The reception includes volleyball, dancing and a bonfire. The FoodTimeLine notes a Hawaiian buffet with tropical fruit salad and chicken curry was a popular menu for gatherings in the 1950s.

Cool '50s Details

Regardless of a specific '50s style, the bride has flexibility in the design of a retro bridal dress to fit her personal style and the theme. Hair and make-up for the women is a major detail for '50s style, regardless of the theme. Hire professional stylists to assist on the big day and to provide a tutorial prior to the wedding based on theme and individual tastes. Regardless of the woman's age or length of hair, a distinctive '50s style will allow her to look her best. Rent a restored 1950s-era car or motorcycle with a sidecar for the couple's big exit.

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