Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Mad Men Sewing: Season 6 Episodes 1 and 2

Welcome to my new series--'Mad Men Sewing' where I will feature some of the costumes from the show and matching vintage patterns to recreate the looks!

I was very excited about the start of season 6 on Sunday and was able to catch up with the series on itunes.  I think this season is going to be really fun in terms of costumes/outfits.  According to the styles, it seems like the season is set somewhere between 1968 and 1969 (though they haven't officially said).  Some of the outfits are still very mod but creeping into some of the 1970s styles.

Here are my pick of outfits and pattern matches based on episodes 1 and 2...

Megan's bikini:
Episode one opens with Megan and Don on the beach in Hawaii.  Megan is wearing a really fun and bright bikini:

Retro swimsuit sewing patterns from top to bottom: 1. Swimsuit and trouser/top cover-up available at Retro Monkeys' Etsy shop; 2. Bathing suit and cover-up pattern available at CynicalGirl's Etsy shop; 3. Swimsuit and top and shorts cover-up pattern available at Retro Monkeys' Etsy shop

It's interesting because I think her bikini might not be historically accurate? All of the vintage patterns I've seen are mostly for bandeau type tops or halter neck bikinis with thick straps. What do you think?   There are a lot of 1960s bikini patterns--the ones shown above are a few of my favourites.

Megan's beach cover-up:
Keeping with the funky and bright coloured fabrics, Megan wears a short cover-up on the beach:

1960's swimsuit cover-up and beach patterns. Left: pattern from SewVintageLady; Right: Butterick Easy Living beach dress pattern from Mrs Depew Vintage

While the beach cover-up pattern on the left (McCall's 8812) is a more accurate match, I can't help but LOVE the pattern on the right (Butterick 2288)....such a cute mod beach dress!!

Joan's Double-Breasted Waistcoat/Vest, Skirt and Ruffled Blouse Ensemble
Can I just say that even though she didn't have very many lines in the first two episodes, Joan still stole the show?  She looked fantastic!  I love the purple tones and the ruffled blouse:

1960s ruffled blouse patterns from left to right: 1. Ruffled blouse pattern, available at Adele Bee Ann Patterns; 2. Ruffled blouse pattern with skirt and jacket, available at Retro Monkeys' Etsy Shop; 3. Ruffled v-neck blouse and pinafore pattern, also available at Retro Monkeys' Etsy Store

You can't tell from the photo above but Joan is not wearing a one-piece dress.  It's a waistcoat/vest with a matching skirt.  Here are a few one-piece double-breasted wiggle dresses from the time period:

Double-breasted pinafore/jumper patterns.  Left: Available at Miss Betty's Attic Etsy Shop; Right: Available at Delicious Patterns and at Deja Vu Patterns Etsy Stores

And here are a few waistcoat patterns for a more accurate portrayal of Joan's outfit (to be paired with a pencil skirt):

Jane's Mod Dress:
Ok, besides Joannie...the show was also stolen by Jane.  Who looks that good at a funeral??  I gasped when I saw her outfit.  She looks like she just walked off the cover of a Vogue Paris Original (VPO) Pattern.  I didn't find a VPO that matched exactly but here are a few that remind me of her outfit:

1. Vogue Paris Original 1540 designed by Jacques Heim, available at All the Precious Things Etsy Shop; 2. Vogue Paris Original 1809 designed by Patou, available at All the Precious Things Etsy Shop:  ; 3. Vogue Paris Original 2206 designed by Molyneux, available at Hela Q's Vintage Patterns Etsy Shop

Here's a closer look at her dress and matching hat:

And here's the outfit I wish she was wearing (lol...maybe I should name this series 'What they should have worn'...):

Vogue Paris Original 1722 designed by Pierre Cardin, available at Floradora Presents Etsy Store

This has to be one of my favourite Vogue Paris Original patterns.  The design is so mod-a-licious!

So, tell me...did you watch the season premiere?  Were you as shocked as I was by the last five minutes?  Oh dear...I think we are in for a ride this season!  What was your favourite outfit of the night?


  1. What a fab idea! Can't wait to read more! xx

  2. I'm not a huge fan of the mod look. However the early 60s is quite adorable.

    The Fictionista

  3. I love this idea for a series!

  4. I think episode 1 is at the end of 1967 because the surgeon (whose wife is having an affair with Don) makes a comment about the first heart transplant having already occurred and that historic event happened in December 1967. And the show ends on New Year's Eve so think 1968 begins with the next episode. 1968 was an explosive year too.

  5. I have a 1971 bathing suit pattern that looks a lot like Megan's. So maybe it was a little early for that style, or maybe patterns were a little behind?


  6. I loved the maxi dress Megan wore in Hawaii


  7. oooh I haven't watched it yet. I love 50's and 60's style clothes. I tend towards the elegant rather than the wild patterns though - unless it's a skirt.

  8. Eek Mad Men is back!! Not seen it yet but getting serious fashion envy from your photos and patterns.

    Can't wait to see what else you share with us :)


  9. This is a great idea, I look forward to more :)

  10. I love this post- can't wait to see more!

  11. Fab post Debi, I love all the research you did to find and share such similar (and gorgeous) sewing patterns! And yes, the last 5min of the episode were certainly interesting. I can't say I was overly surprised, but it does mean change must be on the horizon...!

  12. Fun! I cannot wait to hear what you think about the fashion.

    All in all, I think that the themes were a bit heavy-handed (death...mortality...death...meaning of life...death), but it can take Mad Men a couple of episodes at the beginning of each season to develop a multi-dimensional platform.

    And Phyllis is right on — based on the bits of information (such as the Cotton Bowl reference) sprinkled in the episode, they were celebrating NYE 1967. 1968, here we come!

  13. Love this idea! I'm finishing up my dress for the Mad Men Challenge now actually but I'll be checking here for future inspiration!

    xoxo Lorelai
    Seams Unbiased

  14. Lovely post & idea, Debi, although am not a fan of the show or much that's not on PBS! (No time. :-(
    I do remember a 2-piece suit I had in the late 60's, very similar to the McCall's 8812. I might have been very conservative with my purchase, tho...


  15. Loving this series already, Debi!

  16. Such a cool post!!! Love this! Thanks so much.

  17. I had a bikini almost exactly like that in the late 60s except it was in brown/orange/red and a very similar pattern and fabric.


I read each and every comment--thank you so much!

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