Vintage Waitress Uniforms

Retro waitress

Are you interested in vintage waitress uniforms? Whether you are planning on dressing up and wearing one as a costume or you are required to wear one for work, these retro uniforms can be a stylish choice for women of all ages to consider.

Styles of Vintage Waitress Uniforms

Vintage waitress uniforms typically consist of a dress with a collar and pockets. They are done in a simple style that is comfortable enough to withstand a long workday. A waitress uniforms also works for a maid, nanny or even a nurse.

Some popular retro styles include:

  • Basic dress: Done in a cotton/polyester material and often in solid colors such as pink or light blue, this version is done with contrast white trim on the sleeves and collar. The dress buttons up the front and has plenty of pockets to hold an order pad, pen and other necessities. This look has been worn by waitresses since the 1950s. It could work for a coffee shop as well as for an ice-cream parlor.
  • Diner uniform: Done in a double-breasted style, the dress has short sleeves with a cuff and side pockets. An elastic back waist provides fit as well as comfort. An apron with scallops and a tie in the back along with a pin-on hat completes this retro look. The diner waitress uniform became popular in the 1950s and 1960s and could be found in diners across the nation.
  • Soda uniform: Done in a bright color such as red and usually accented with white or a checkered pattern, this uniform was worn by waitresses who worked at soda fountains or ice-cream parlors. It was done in a more youthful style and commonly worn by teenage employees.

Where to Find

Finding vintage waitress uniforms should not pose a problem since they can be easily found online. Try a site such as eBay that has a selection of retro waitress uniforms from the 50s, 60s and 70s. Some of the uniforms are authentic while others are replicas to be worn as costumes.

Costume shops, both online and at retail locations, stock a variety of costume uniforms. For example, Wholesale Halloween Costumes carries the Retro Waitress Adult Costume during Halloween season. This costume is done in light blue with white and black accent trim. It is reminiscent of a diner drive-in waitress uniform and comes with a dress, apron and hat.

At Buy Costumes, you can find several options such as the Soda Shop Waitress costume that includes a red and white dress with an attached apron, name tag and a 50s styled hat. Another costume in their inventory is the Teen Soda Shop Waitress. This version includes a red waitress dress with red and white checkered trim, an apron, black framed glasses and a red hat.

Buy Costumes also carries the Diner Delight Waitress costume. It includes a red and white striped dress with a layered skirt, ruffled neckline and puffy sleeves. It has an apron attached to the dress as well as a name tag. A headpiece completes the look.

For those who want to create their own look, visit a local thrift store where you may be able to find a simple cotton button-up dress. Add a white apron and a name tag and you are ready to go.

Special Touches

No vintage waitress uniform is complete without the proper accessories. For a special touch, add an order pad and pencil, name tag and a serving tray. Many waitresses wore hair nets under their hats to keep hair out of their face and out of customer's food. If you want, add a hair net to your costume for an authentic look. Remember, there are all sorts of vintage uniform styles. The key to keeping the look retro is the overall simplicity of the style: a basic dress, apron and hat is all you need to pull off the look!

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Vintage Waitress Uniforms