To everything there is a season, and this fall seems the perfect time to embrace the burgeoning popularity of AMC’s Emmy award-winning Mad Men, now in its third season.
The show chronicles the mid-century rise of the modern advertising industry in New York City with scenes of incessant workplace alcoholism and incredibly limiting gender roles.
What’s not to like?
It’s a comfort to those who are perhaps nostalgic for the good old days, and a fascinating history lesson to those of us who’ve never heard of a Brandy Alexander.
It might be a stretch to say that the show is having its influence on today’s fashion, but it reminds us women that we don’t need an excuse to get dolled-up. Form-fitting dresses, perfectly coiffed hair, white driving gloves — I only wish I could spend hours in front of the mirror every morning getting ready for my day, a luxury afforded the women in the show, but at a cost.
If you’re looking to pull off the 1950s-’60s housewife look this fall, try working the hair and makeup in with your current daily wardrobe, or camp it up for a stunning, pinup Halloween costume.
And don’t let the fun stop with just one costume — throw a grownups-only Mad Men theme party! Just don’t forget the hard liquor and your cigarette holder.
— Mary Katherine Stump
For a lesson in mid-century primping, I visited with Tatianah Predestin at Paradise Salon and Spa in Delray Beach for some how-tos:
French twist: One thing I’ve never been able to figure out is how on Earth all of these women got their hair to stay in these fancy up-dos. Tatianah recommends starting with dirty hair, since it is able to hold curl better. Coat it with thickening spray if you have fine hair, curl with your choice of rollers, and then separate your hair into three sections: the back of your head and the two sides. Focus on each section separately. Begin by teasing the sections at their base. Take the back section, and pin in with bobby pins into a half-moon. Then, use the two side sections of your hair as the décor. Tease them up in the front, or lay them flat, but pin them around the twist you created with the back section of your hair for the look’s final flourish.
Makeup: Lips and eyes are the key. Use a lip liner to dramatically define your lips, then coat in a matte lip color, preferably a deep red. For the eyes, use black liquid eye-liner and draw across the lash line, from the inside of your eye to the outside, turning the brush up right before you get to the end of your lash line to create the effect of thicker lashes.
Clothes: You can find ’50s-’60s era cocktail and day dresses at most vintage shops in the area, including House of Vintage, who along with the Delray Beach Historical Society is sponsoring a Vintage Clothing Exhibit and Sale at Cason Cottage during October and November.
If you go:
Tatianah Predestin at Paradise Salon and Spa
140 NE 2nd Ave., Delray Beach
House of Vintage (also, House of Sweets, in the back)
123 S. Swinton Ave., Delray Beach
Vintage Clothing Exhibit and Sale at Cason Cottage
(Sponsored by the Delray Beach Historical Society and House of Vintage)
5 NE 1st St., Delray Beach
Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, 11 am – 3 pm — October 1 through November 27.
10% of all sales benefit the Delray Beach Historical Society
Mary Katherine is a local freelance writer and stylist. Check out her blog on fashion and interiors atwww.everydaycurator.blogspot.com