Monday, March 31, 2014

Mad Men Challenge: A floral Betty dress

As soon as the marvellous Julia Bobbin announced her Mad Men sewing challenge was open, I knew that I had to absolutely, totally enter! The purpose of the challenge is to find a character who inspires you fashion-wise on Mad Men, and create a garment using them as inspiration. You could try and replicate a costume exactly, or just use their style as a loose guide - it is open to interpretation, as long as the vintage-y fabulousness of Mad Men style is paid homage to.

I had no doubt about who's style I wanted to emulate. For me there will only ever be one Mad Men gal who's frock I covet, and that is Betty. Yup, I can't go past Betty Draper Francis in full Jackie Kennedy glamour mode, and she rocks a floral print like nobody else.


So I dove into my stash, found some perfectly Betty bloom printed cotton sateen and got sewing. The fabric was the easy part - it was choosing the pattern that gave me some grief. I was spoilt for choice, being in possession of quite a few vintage patterns, but was limited by only having 1.8m of fabric.

In the end I went with a modern pattern with a definite vintage feel: Simplicity 1873. Betty does love a full skirt, and the cute side tabs with buttons gave it a late 50's sliding into the 60's vibe that I just couldn't go past.

Look at the floral print! Adds a hint of warmth to a cold-hearted gal. Look at the prim and proper silhouette! Her life may be a mess but her dress is just the thing!

Big big big thanks to Julia for running this sew-a-long. I can't wait to see what everybody else come up with!





Project Details
Pattern: Simplicity 1873 (Cynthia Rowley)
Fabric: 1.8m printed cotton stretch sateen from Clegs
Notions: 55cm invisible zipper, lining, interfacing

Ok, so now I have the dress. If only I could have her hair, cheekbones and pearls as well!


  1. That is a great version of that pattern!

  2. This is SO gorgeous! I'm a huge Betty fan myself, and I think that you did your inspiration justice! It looks great on you- so nice for spring!!

  3. Adorable. Great work.

  4. Could you and this dress be any more freaking perfect! I love it so much it HURTS! And I've seen this beautiful creation in 'person' so I know just how gorgeous it is. LOVE!

  5. Oh. Wow.
    Lovely, this is spectacular! Total Betty floral and hair combo!

  6. Beautiful! Betty is my favorite too.

  7. yummmmmmmmm. you don't need any of miss betty's body parts, you stunner.

  8. Great dress, but where is your cigarette?

  9. Great dress, but where is your cigarette?

  10. You do rock a floral print very well :)

  11. You and that dress look fabulous!

  12. What a stunner!

  13. Anonymous9:50 am

    Super duper adorable! Love it!

  14. Anonymous5:04 pm

    So pretty! I am loving that fabric too - just stunning

  15. beautiful dress your floral is delicious!

  16. Ah, such an adorable dress for you! I love the floral you chose! It perfectly suits the pattern...and speaking of the pattern; I have this one, and it's fantastic! You look lovely! :)

  17. Your dress is gorgeous! I'm inspired to make one for myself!

  18. This dress and you are absolutely beautiful! Nice work!


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