Tuesday, August 30, 2011

I Heart Mad Men Style

For an evening at the symphony earlier this year (another one of those events that just screams for a new outfit), I made up this Vogue Couturier pattern from November 1955, purchased as an Eva Dress reproduction. 

This was one of the rare times when I purchased a pattern and the fabric at the same time with a specific image in mind. 

Once I had the fabric in my hands (I purchased it online from Fashion Fabrics Club) the real fun began.  Am I the only one who takes extra special care with a project simply because the fabric is amazing?  A muslin, thread tacks, and hand basting are absolutely required!  This is one of the more complicated dresses I have worked on, and it is also one of my favorites.  A very in-depth review of the construction process may be found at PatternReview.
The inspiration for the capelet cover-up came later. 

It just seemed a shame to cover the dress with a coat, unless it was a matching silk taffeta swing coat, even for a walk from the car.  Alas, with limited time, it was clear the swing coat was going to have to wait.  The double-breasted capelet was underlined with flannel to add a bit more warmth and lined with the cherry red Zeus lining also used for the dress. 

And while it was definitely less glamorous than a full length swing coat, it worked just fine.
And, of course, to finish off the ensemble, a hat was essential.  I had a single skein of stunning gold chenille yarn that I had been hoarding, so I decided to knit a small cocktail hat to add a different texture to the outfit. 

More information about my adventures with buckram and wire may be found on Ravelry.
The dress has only been worn once, however, it is currently living a virtual life on AMC’s website.

I am quite sure that I am not the only vintage inspired gal who loves the fashion of Mad Men (thank you Janie Bryant!), and the writing isn’t too shabby either.  As many are probably aware, Janie is responsible for some of the new Banana Republic fashions.  For a few years, they have sponsored a contest with the chance for a walk-on role on Mad Men!  So when it came time for this year’s Mad Men Casting Call, I immediately thought of this picture, even though the dress would be considered a bit passé by the 1960s.
I would really appreciate your support.  You may vote once every 24 hours until SEPTEMBER 9.  Due to fraudulent voting in the past, now you must register to vote with AMC -- or use your Google, AOL or Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo login.  The initial registration is a bit of a bother (but successive voting is easy!), and it would mean a lot to me if you vote each day until Sept. 9th.
Thanks for voting!

Dress:  Eva Dress E50-883, Made by Me
Shoes:  Alfani Daphna Pumps
Hat:  Made by Me


  1. YAY! Glad to see you have a blog! I've been loving your sewing from the EvaDress contest and from Burdastyle!!

  2. Hello Laura. I'm so happy to see that you now have a blog. Reading your reviews on the patternreview site has been so enjoyable and informative, and I always look out for them. I can't wait to see what else you come up with.

  3. Your dress is gorgeous. Welcome to blogging. I look forward to seeing more of your creations.

  4. *Gasp*! That is AMAZING! I'd totally make that dress too if I could be bothered. I'm so jealous of your amazing skills and patience.

  5. I found you on Sew Retro and just had to stop by to say that I love everything about this outfit and your styling. It's simply gorgeous! I look forward to following your future adventures now!

  6. WOW what a dress! That colour and fabric is just amazing. You're a total inspiration :-D

    I haven't dared sew anything with a super special fabric yet but I have a wedding to attend at the end of the year and I may be biting off more than I can chew with the dress I'm planning. Especially when I want to make it out of silk - taffeta or shantung I don't know yet...

  7. Marvellous dress (looks very difficult to make), I love the fashion of Mad Men too, hope you win.

  8. I just stopped by from sew retro to say that the dress is gorgeous and I love your style! Presentation with attitude. I will be following along.


  9. A totally together, totally gorgeous ensemble! Absolutely inspirational!

  10. Thank you for all the lovely comments! I am very excited to be entering the blogosphere – thank you for joining me on this journey. And please bear with me as I acclimate to my new environment!

  11. Stunning!

    (Found you through Sew Retro, btw)

  12. As I told you in Sew Retro, WOW, this dress is pretty, you look very very good you REALLY look like all the girls in MAd Men, that red lining is just perfect and accesories too.

  13. Absolutely totally amazingly gorgeous.....