Sunday, March 17, 2013

Mad Men Challenge 2 - I'm In!

I've been bit by the sew along bug in the best sort of way. I've just finished a 1940s style dress for the Sew for Victory sew along (post to come as soon as there is a sunny day for photos). Now that is out of the way I'm on to my dress for the Mad Men Challenge 2 hosted by Julia Bobbin. I hated that I missed out on the first one. I was thrilled that she decided to do it again!  For my dress I'm going to recreate this amazing number that Joan (Christina Hendricks) is modelling in this Season 5 cast photo:

Mad Men Season 5 Cast Photo
Image belongs to AMC.
The actual dress she is wearing is emerald green and it looks like a jacquard fabric.I hunted and hunted at my local Hancock's but couldn't find an emerald or even an olive green fabric that I felt would justify a cocktail dress. However, I did come across some really pretty chocolate poly shantung.

poly shantung cotton broadcloth

I wish it were silk, but my local store had no silk at all. I was not impressed. Next time I'll go to JoAnn's that's further down the road. I picked a cotton broadcloth in orange for lining. I prefer to have natural fibers against my skin.

I'm using McCall's 2401, View C with longer (3/4 length) sleeves. I got it on sale for $0.99 when I got my fabric.

McCall's 2401 
I cut it to a sort of size 18 but I've had to alter it to death to fit me. It has 3 pattern pieces since I'm not using the facings the pattern comes with due to lining it and I've had to make adjustments for being shortwaisted, and having a very full bust, narrow shoulders, and a swayback.  I have to say, though, that the neckline is laying perfectly on me. I'm so happy about that. I tend to shy away from square necks because they gap with my narrow shoulders and full bust. I'm working on my 3rd muslin now, but here's the second one on Mathilda:

McCall's 2401 

It looks a whole lot better on me than it does on Mathilda. She's too rigid to really pull off a wiggle dress. I'm hoping to be done with tweaking after the 3rd one, but I might need a 4th for fine tuning. Then I'll have to work on the sleeves. Luckily I have just over a month before the deadline. It's going to be, hopefully, an amazing cocktail dress when I'm done. I want the fit to be impeccable.

I'm loving the process of working out my fitting issues with this pattern. I think it will be a TNT by the time I'm done. Are you doing this challenge? Leave me a comment with a link to your posts about it.

Julia Bobbin, Mad Men Dress Challenge 2


  1. I think you picked a good pattern to make that dress from!

    I'm making a Joan dress too - you can follow me at

    1. Thanks for the comment! When I saw it I thought it looked just like the dress (darts and all) and the costumer just made a covered belt to go with it. I also got supplies to make a covered belt for the dress.