Pert Pedal Pushers

Doris Day pushing the pedal in pedal pushers
Pedal pushers, which were a variation on Capri pants, were a hot fashion item in the 1950's - they projected a perky, fun image, were less cumbersome than jeans and could be plain, cuffed or embellished with buttons or braiding.

Also known as clam diggers, the three quarter length pants were often teamed with a loose shirt, tied at he midriff or a stripey top. Pedal pushers appeared frequently in films from the 1950's and were worn by such leading ladies as Grace Kelly, Audrey Hepburn, Doris Day and Sophia Loren.

Grace Kelly's clothes were never better than they were in the 1954 Alfred Hitchcock film, Rear Window, (except maybe in To Catch a Thief) and in the final scene of the film she wears a classic combination of dark blue, cuffed denim pedal pushers, navy loafers and a tangerine shirt, tied at the waist.

Grace Kelly in Pedal Pushers
The costumes for both films were designed by the legendary Edith Head, who was nominated for more academy awards (for costume design) than any other woman in Hollywood - thirty-five in all. She won eight.

50's rockabilly legend Carl Perkins liked pedal pushers so much - pink ones, in particular, he wrote a song about them...

Poster from Amazo

Read a longer version of this article about pedal pushers...