DIY: 1960’s Mad Men Inspired Dress Refashion

OK, so maybe I HAVE been watching too much Mad Men this summer.


I just can’t get enough!

I want one…….


I found this little number at the thrift store the other day and made it into this:


Here’s how:

First look in the mirror and pull the dress up until you get the desired hem length. Mark with safety pins where you would like the bottom of the bodice and the top of the skirt.

Stretch some quarter inch elastic around your waist to the desired tension. Cut and sew onto seam allowance, stretching as you sew to create a gathered look.

Now you could walk right into Sterling Cooper with your steno pad and start taking dictation for Don Draper.

And I seriously made it in ten minutes yesterday.

You might also like to check out some other tutorials:

Thanks for visiting!


About The Renegade Seamstress

I'm a busy wife, mom, grandma, and teacher who loves to create. I've joined the refashion scene and I 'd like to share and connect with all those talented and creative people out there doing similar things.
This entry was posted in DIY, Sewing and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

87 Responses to DIY: 1960’s Mad Men Inspired Dress Refashion

  1. Beautiful fabric and a darling result!

  2. Marty Frasier says:

    Love! This one is work worthy!

  3. rosyragpatch says:

    That’s a great transformation.

  4. Such a pretty print. I love the colours!

  5. Love the dress style of the 50’s and 60’s – they were so much more feminine and prettier.

    • I agree, much more feminine. I’m loving this style now, too. I always wondered if it would look good on me and now I want one in every color for every day of the week.
      Thanks for the comment!

  6. Jakki says:

    Love the dress and the fabric,…..but….be careful of Mr. Draper!

  7. LoOove Mad Men, and looove the dress!!

  8. I love this dress Soooooo much! way to go! What a great refashion! šŸ™‚

  9. alicecarman says:

    I love your dress!!! I’m a Mad Men fan and love the look of the show. Great job!

  10. blankenmom says:

    You’re so stinken’ cute! Love the dress too. šŸ˜‰

  11. repurposedmind says:

    I adore it!!

  12. ooobop! says:

    Gorgeous! You have an amazing eye for potential, Beth x

  13. Lisa Yarost says:

    Lovely dress! You really made it click!

  14. Barb says:

    Ahhhh, I’ve been wondering what you have been up to!! Seriously, I have been waiting to see what creations are coming out of summer vacation! I like this dress. There is something nostalgic or romantic about a figure fitting shirt waist dirndl type dress. Nice!

  15. Sharon ŲŖ says:

    I love it! so darn cute!!

    Sharon @ mrs. hines class

  16. Joen says:

    Really cute! thanks for the great tutorials.

  17. Betty says:

    Hi Beth,
    Great idea!
    Thanks for stopping by my blog =)

  18. WOW! This looks amazing! You are so clever at picking out thrifted (we call them op shops in Australia) dresses. Do you have any tips on what to look for? I would LOVE to try something like this. The fabric is just gorgeous!

    • Thanks for all of your kind comments!

      When I go shopping, I don’t always know what I’m going to make from each item. Sometimes it sits in my refashion closet for months before I get an inspiration.

      But, before anything goes in my shopping basket, it has to have some fabric I like. Once in awhile, I buy it because I like the buttons or some other embellishment. Or maybe it’s a quality brand. I usually shop on half price days, too. That way I will be more willing to take a risk and not hesitate to jump right in and try something. If it doesn’t work out, I don’t feel too bad about the investment.

      I hope this helps and I’m so excited to see what you make.

      Enjoy your day!

  19. I love this dress and you are such a great fashion model! I wish I could sew like you because not only are you truly talented but you are chic too! šŸ™‚

  20. lostdododesigns says:

    As always amazing:) I have been meaning to tell you how much I love your posed after photos. They are always engaging and so well staged.

    • Thank you Sarah! I’ll have to mention that to my my fifteen year old son. He’s a good sport and in between football practice, tubing the river, and learning to drive he becomes my “fashion photographer”. He’s a good sport.
      Looks like you’ve been having lots of fun in Seattle!

  21. NanaDoll says:

    I have nominated you for the Very Inspiring Blogger award. Congratulations!

  22. iris says:

    I love it! Just wondering why you “eased” the extra fabric instead of gathering it? Does it look different or is it easier?

    • Dear Iris,
      I think easing it gives it a slightly different look. Not necessarily easier. I think you would definitely want to gather it if you had lots of fabric you were trying to fit in. Otherwise it might end up with a pleated look, which would be fine if that’s what you were going for.
      Thanks for the visit!

  23. lovely! The fabric looks comfy.

  24. Helen says:

    Such a cute dress! You really have an eye for finding good thrift store items and turning them into something special! Thank you for sharing your tutorial. As always, so helpful!

  25. Love it! You are so creative…

  26. Hugs & Kisses Clothing says:

    This is just adorable – I’d never have thought there’d be enough fabric to make it from that dress! what a great thrift šŸ˜€ xXx

  27. Pingback: My Friend Valerie and her Vintage Dress Refashion | The Renegade Seamstress

  28. wow, that looks great.

  29. iheartannasophia says:

    I love your blog. I can’t get over how much there is to try out! It’s great. This Madmen dress is great. ….thanks for liking my page too!

  30. What a transformation!

    Jenny x

  31. craftysorcha says:

    Wow, what a good refashion, you turned a dowdy dress into a cute retro number! šŸ™‚

  32. Anonymous says:

    Oh my goodness, that is the most adorable thing ever! Love the entire outfit!

  33. Trish Blair says:

    Hi Beth,
    That is a great upcycle! Wonderful fabric, and I am sure you will get lots of wear out of it.

  34. Wow Beth, this is fantastic! I’ve been seeing a lot of Mad Men inspired dresses on other sewing blogs, but this is the first refashioned one I’ve seen. I love it. I haven’t been lucky to find any dresses to refashion as of yet. But I’m going op-shopping on Monday with that goal in mind. (Preferably to find .49 dresses – we’ll see!)

  35. Pingback: DIY: No Sew Dress Refashion | The Renegade Seamstress

  36. beth says:

    i think you’re a genius:) this dress is my favorite refashion:)

  37. Carlyn says:

    You are very talented, thanks for sharing your talent and skills with us (me). I will put many of your tips to work like…now! I found you on Pinterest.

  38. mtetar says:

    Thanks so much for visiting and Clicking the Like Button. Blessings, Mtetar

  39. Pingback: Ten Minute T-Shirt Shrug | The Renegade Seamstress

  40. A great refashion! I need to keep the end result in mind when i see something at the thrift store or yard sale šŸ™‚ *note to self-cut the top of the skirt and the bottom of the bodice! I love your finished dress ā¤

  41. Pingback: Upcycling is the new black – The Renegade Seamstress takes reconstructing clothes to a whole new level! | Broke Girl Problems

  42. EcoGoodz says:

    Wonderful job on the refashion! So glad you’re showing and reminding the world that even used clothing has value!

  43. Danielle says:

    Your ideas are great! I wish I knew how to sew. I wonder if I can do any of this by hand….?

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