Cream together shortening and sugar until fluffy. Add buttermilk, egg & vanilla. Mix flour, soda, and salt. Add a little at a time to wet mixture, blending well. Chill dough for at least 1 hour covered.
Roll out on lightly floured pastry sheet or board. Cut into shapes.
Bake on lightly greased pan at 350°F for 10-to-12 minutes (till lightly browned) or drop by tablespoonfuls on greased cookie sheet.