Sock Hop Outfit Ideas

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Sock hops became a popular event during the 1950s. Teenagers would kick off their shoes in the high school gym and dance the night away to all the latest music. Fashion was big in the '50s and sock hops were no exception. Modern day sock hops may be themed or not, but the spirit of the era is always present at these dances.


For a themed sock hop, dress the part by wearing fashions worn by the popular high school teens of the time. Girls wore circle skirts sometimes adorned with felt poodle cutouts. You can make one of these cutouts using a pattern available at local crafting or sewing stores and attaching it to your own circle or full skirt. Pressed, well-fitted blouses in whites and pastels were commonly worn during this time period and are still readily available for you to wear today. A waist-length button-down cardigan sweater could complete the basic outfit. Saddle shoes were often the choice of teens of the time and can be purchased at most sporting stores or cheerleading outlets. A ponytail at the back of your head may be worn with a scarf wrapped around the clasp and white bobby socks could complete your outfit.


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Popular boys of the time typically wore loose-fitting pleated trousers with small cuffs at the bottom. These are easily mimicked today. White button down shirts and open letterman sweaters or long cardigans can complete the ensemble. Slip-on loafers were the style for young men along with neatly combed back short hair.


The Bad Boy/Bad Girl

Social changes in the 1950s led to teen groups known as greasers. These "bad" boys and girls dressed in their own style to set them apart from the popular students. You can choose to be a bad boy or girl for the night of your sock hop. Girls typically wore tight-fitting pencil skirts in plaid or solid colors or form-fitting capri pants in bright shades. Tight knit sweaters in matching or complementing colors to their bottoms were often the choice. A matching scarf tied around the neck and pumps, or enclosed toe heels, often completed the ensemble. Hair was teased and smoothed into place with lots of hairspray and makeup was bright. Use plenty of red lipstick for this look.


Bad boys often wore plain white T-shirts with the sleeves rolled up. They cuffed their jeans to just below the calf and wore white socks with black high top sneakers. This entire look can usually be made from items already in your closet. Greased hair and black combs in the back pocket of your jeans can complete this look.



For a sock hop party that is not '50s themed, choose to wear comfortable clothing that allows for a lot of movement. Wear socks in loud colors or fun themes such as toe socks. Wear shoes that are easy to remove.


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