Mad Men Dress Challenge: Reflections

Last Friday I crawled across the finish line completing my Mad Men Dress on the day it was due in an episode that was quite reminiscent of my university days (I know Julia gave an extension but I was going on holiday on the same Friday – so no extension for Penny). I’ve posted a few photos of the finished product as well as some progress posts along the way.


In case you were wondering I made McCall’s 6454 circa 1964 in a navy, teal and gold brocade. I made a muslin in some shocking pink nylon-y material which I used as the lining.


This is the first sewalong that I’ve gone in on. I’ve really enjoyed being part of a community of people all working on their sewalong projects. However I found working under the time pressure of a deadline quite deflating. I really enjoy sewing. It’s something I do because simply because I like it. So the notion of having to time pressure was a bit unwelcome. That’s not to say that I haven’t enjoyed the sewalong experience. It’s been great to see everyone’s dresses and how they interpreted the brief. Perhaps I was a bit literal with my dress – I don’t think 1960s when I first look at it. Instead it’s more of a copy of Betty’s dress – brocade and a high neckline.


The plunging back was really a guess. I partly chose this design because I thought the high neckline on Betty’s dress front would need the low back to balance it out if you know what I mean, and partly because I already had this pattern perhaps being a cheap….


Overall I enjoyed the sewalong experience but it might be a while before I enter another!



15 thoughts on “Mad Men Dress Challenge: Reflections”

  1. Alas I only found your blog today – I would have loved to join the Meet Up. I’m a new logger but a seasoned sewer and blog reader … I have long wondered where on earth the Auckland craft people are to be found. So …. Next time, count me in.


  2. Wow this dress is just lovely – I hope you are going to wear it out? The fit, style and colours look very elegant indeed.

    I’m not one for sewalongs either though they provide some really really useful help when I do make something similar enough. For me its the time too but also because often sewalongs don’t line up with what I’m making either.


    1. Thank you. I do love the fabric too – but I am quite a magpie! I definitely enjoyed aspects of the sewalong and the time pressure was a good incentive I guess!!


  3. I love that style and the back is gorgeous so who cares that you didn’t buy a new pattern! I think that is just a great dress with a great fit. I have entered a few sew-a-longs and have NEVER finished any of them because of the time issue. I finished my first sew-a-long 6 months late. I want to be a part of the “club” but it is deflating to sew because you “have” to.


  4. I entered my first competition/sewalong too recently and feel the same as you. It was great to be part of it, but sewing to a deadline meant I sewed because I had to, not when I wanted too. Like you, I think it will be a while before I repeat the experience!.
    And, that’s really a very lovely dress and I like your styling with dark tights.


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