TV Show Style Check: Mad Men

Vintage Fashion

We saw a great post from the men’s style expert at Gentleman’s Gazette analyzing “What Mad Men Got Wrong.” While the vintage clothing time period of Mad Men is quite different from the vintage fashion books we sell here at La Barre Books, anything that digs into period clothing makes our ears perk up. Even though many other great period shows have since seized the TV throne, (such as, say, The Crown) Mad Men remains a master class in period-specific story telling.

Gentleman’s Gazette looks at some of the key clothing worn by our secretive, occasionally slimy yet beloved protagonist, Don Draper, with a focus on:

  • Business suits
  • Casualwear
  • Sport Coats
  • White Dinner Jacket & Tuxedo
  • Hats

Out of these items, the one that gets the most heat in the article is Don Draper’s suits, particularly that the show used more modern lightweight fabrics. The writer has a keen eye and notices that the way Don’s suits drape and wrinkle in the show, they weren’t made from the heavier, more substantial fabric from the time. Oh, and the show does note that Don at some point is wearing a Rolex Sapphire Crystal Explorer 1 watch, which wasn’t introduced until the 1990s, a mistake the writer succinctly labels as: ” So, obviously, plain wrong.”

After that he digs into the styles worn by a broad swath of the show’s male characters, including Roger Sterling, the rake-ish elder statesmen of the agency who just can’t keep himself out of trouble, with a focus on his accessories and three-piece suits; Pete Campbell, the occasionally smarmy Yacht Club kid who’s never satisfied, looking at his business suit and madras jacket; and the comforting Britishman Lane Pryce, with his tweed and British touches.