Shoulders were narrow and soft. A tight bodice came to the natural waist or slightly higher, where the skirt took over. The skirt is where the two silhouettes of the s emerged. Vintage 50s Dress History Summer Skirts and Dresses Vintage s dress fabrics were endless and made a dress more casual or elegant depending on where it was worn. Cotton was used for leisure wear, mostly in shirtwaist dresses- the favorite house dress.