Mad Men Sewing Challenge Dress Complete…Barely

I finished my dress for the Mad Men Sewing Challenge, just in time. Phew! I was so glad to have an extension.


I aimed to have this dress done on Friday (the original deadline), but I’ve been distracted since Thursday. We’re redoing our whole yard. We’ve pulled out concrete, filled the pool in, re-graded the yard, cleared, pruned, tilled, etc. I’ve had to dig up and temporarily pot a lot of plants to replant when we’re finished. Needless to say, I’m amazed that I managed to squeeze this dress in by the extended deadline.


Anyway, as you may recall for my planning post, this was my inspiration dress.

Mad Men - Season 5, Episode 5 - Photo Credit: Ron Jaffe/AMCI gave my dress a much wider neckline, and didn’t make it so tight. I used Butterick 2952 as a base pattern, and made a lot of alterations and additions.


I added buttons on the front bodice, changed the neckline and drafted a collar to go with the neckline. Then, I drafted new facing pieces for the front and back. The collar pieces, facings, and front edges of the bodice are interfaced.


The dress was almost free to make, since the teal material was given to me by my grandmother a couple of years ago. This was the only teal material I had, and I only had about a yard and half. Therefore, I didn’t have enough of the teal material for both collar pieces, so the underside of the collar is made from the scarf material (which I actually think is kinda fun).

IMG_6582I really wanted to use a stretch poplin for this dress, but I couldn’t find any or have any shipped quickly enough. Unfortunately, the material that I used for this dress doesn’t have the stretch I would’ve liked. For a closer fit, I lengthened the darts on the front and back of the skirt. I also had to take the darts in a bit more at the waist.


I sewed an invisible zipper to the left side seam for closure. If only I’d left myself more time, then I could have hand sewn the hem and sleeve hems.

The buttons are covered with the teal material, and the scarf is just a small folded rectangle with a pin on the back. Since the scarf is detachable, I can change up the look of the dress when I want. I really like the way the dress looks with a white belt and white shoes. There are a lot of belt and shoe combinations that will look cute with this dress. I can’t wait to mix and match, depending on my mood. 🙂


I recently acquired a buttonhole cutter, and I am in love! It makes the buttonholes so precise and clean. I could never go back to using a seam ripper.

Well, those are all the details I can think of, at the moment. So, I’ll show you some more pictures of the dress. I apologize that some of these are blurry. I had a really hard time finding a place with enough light for pictures (serves me right for waiting until the last minute to finish the dress and take photos). Our yard is a muddy mess, so I wasn’t about to tromp through it to take photos.


Upstairs was the only location with enough light for photos. If you’re a long time reader of the blog, you’ll understand why the upstairs looks like it does. For those who don’t know, we are in the process of a top-to-bottom home renovation.




Haha! Newton photo bomb!



As you can see, my mother-in-law and I took down some more walls upstairs this weekend.  Now, Alex and I can work on rebuilding the upstairs.


But first, it’s time to clean up a bit. 🙂


I’m enjoying seeing other bloggers’ outfits, and I can’t wait to see Julia Bobbin‘s wrap-up.

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51 Responses to Mad Men Sewing Challenge Dress Complete…Barely

  1. Sarah Lewis says:

    I love the first shhhh picture…..very cute and classic!

  2. Joyatee says:

    This is so beautiful! I love it on you and I can’t believe you squeezed it out of 1.5 yards!

  3. Jen says:

    This is just gorgeous!! I love that colour green on you and the peter pan collar is adorable (especially the underside!).

    • Becca says:

      Thanks! This has always been one of my favorite colors. I like the underside of the collar too; it’s like a fun little secret. 🙂

  4. larakrjacobs says:

    Wow I love it! It’s a perfect version of Joan’s dress and that colour looks so stunning on you! I can’t wait to see all the other dresses either x

    • Becca says:

      Thanks so much! I’ve seen a lot of beautiful dresses for the challenge, and seeing them all at once should be fun!

  5. ashley0107 says:

    Gorgeous dress, and that colour looks lovely on you 🙂

  6. Lauren says:

    i love what you made! the color is fantastic and i love the scarf that you paired with it. awesome job!

  7. Marie says:

    This is possibly your most beautiful make to date, you look stunning my dear!

  8. Joanne says:

    Amazing job. You did a great job altering the pattern. I never would have seen your version in the original patterrn.

  9. Pingback: Mad Men Teal Joan Dress

  10. angela says:

    I love it. You did an amazing job. The fit and the colour are fantastic on you.

  11. LLADYBIRD says:

    YOU FILLED IN THE POOL??? Whyyyyy!! Now where am I supposed to travel great lengths to for sunbathing and swimming purposes?!!

    Hahha just kidding; no rando visits from me :B Also, my parents have an (above-ground)pool and I know what a pain that thing is to clean and maintain!

    But anyway, I’m so glad you were able to get that finished by the deadline because it is STUNNING. The shape and fit are amazing, and that is totally “your” color. I can’t imagine anyone looking better in that teal than you do – not even Joanie (shh don’t tell her I said that!).

    • Becca says:

      Haha! Yeah. That thing was a pain. We couldn’t keep it from becoming a borderline cesspool all the time. We spent way too much money on chemicals and it was never right. Also, the lining was really damaged and it would’ve cost quite a bit to replace.

      A visit from you would be pretty awesome! I wouldn’t complain! I can’t wait to have visitors…once we have a place for people to stay that is. Right now, visitors would basically have to camp. Ha! 🙂 Hopefully, by the fall of this year we’ll be close to finished with our house.

      Anyway, thanks so much! You’re too sweet. That made my day! 🙂 It is definitely my favorite color.

  12. Jhulysdiary says:

    This is a very chique and classy dress, Love it!

  13. annadeutgen says:

    A-ma-zing! Out of the ballpark!

  14. nettie says:

    This is amazing!!! VERY close to your inspiration!! Well done finishing in time!

  15. This is gorgeous! The buttons, collar and necktie are my favourites!

  16. Nay says:

    Amazing! Loving the colour and contrast, it’s just perfect!

  17. Ashley says:

    It’s such a good match to the original! The color looks lovely on you, too 🙂

  18. gingermakes says:

    This is so cute! I love it! It really suits you!

  19. Gorgeous dress! I love the color and the silhouette. All the alterations you made are great and the scarf undercollars are the perfet touch! Great job!
    Thanks for linking up!

  20. Rox says:

    Wow, that is an amazing dress. It fits you like a glove!!

  21. I LOVE this dress, it’s just stunning and so similar to your inspiration dress. Love the details too, especially the underside of the collar matching the scarf. You’ve done a wonderful job, this is definitely one of my favourites! x

    • Becca says:

      Thanks, Jane! I’m flattered that you like it. The underside of the collar wasn’t necessarily my plan A, I was forced into doing it that way out of necessity, but I think it’s kinda fun. 🙂

  22. Beautiful dress! The color looks great on you! I’m glad I found your blog on Julia’s challenge! I have a lot of the same interests!

    • Becca says:

      Thank you! I’m glad you came to visit my blog too. 🙂 Thanks for leaving me such a sweet comment.

  23. Justine says:

    It is just adorable on you!

  24. Sassy T says:

    Love this and have posted it on my Sassy Sewing Bee’s facebook page.

    • Becca says:

      I’m flattered that you like my dress enough to share it on your page. 😀 You’re too sweet!

  25. Alana says:

    Gorgeous dress, and the color is lovely on you!

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