Mad Men Challenge – the Trudy Dress

When I saw that Julia Bobbin had announced a second Mad Men Challenge, I was pretty excited.  I missed last years one as it was pre-blogging and before even discovering all the amazing sewing blogs out there!

My only problem was what to make, I love a good Joan dress, but I am not sure the shape would suit me without some serious foundation garments.  Then there is Peggy and Betty who both have some great dresses.  The outfits I considered are on my Pinterest board.  For some reason the character whose outfits I seem to be drawn to most are Trudy’s wonderful and patterned shirtdresses.  I do love me a great shirtdress!

Could she look more stunning? 

I had a pattern in my stash already which perfectly matches this, even down to the welts and cuff turnups.


I didn’t even try to match the fabric with the inspiration as those colours don’t work with my colouring, but instead went with a pretty vintage inspired floral print I bought from last year.  The pattern was in my size but I even did a quick muslin of the bodice to sort out any potential fit issues (I am getting good at doing this muslin business).  I ended up narrowing the shoulders by 2cm and shortening the bodice between the bust and shoulders by about 1.5cm.  The rest of the measurements were perfect, even the waist! Quelle surprise!


I am loving the result and the fit is perfect, plus the fabric has just the tiniest bit of give making it super comfortable as well.  Couldn’t be happier!


The bodice has some cool details like welts on either side, not welt pockets, but who would use that area as a pocket anyway, not sure that I need more bulk in that department!! 

I made a matching belt – can you see it?  It matches almost too well!!


I changed the construction a little as it is supposed to fasten with the front buttons and then you are supposed to cut a vent in the skirt of about 10cm/3″ to help you get in the dress.  That would have resulted in a crazy gap right over my lady bits and way too dangerous for wardrobe malfunctions! Instead I sewed up the waistband without the strange vent and put in an invisible side zipper, much safer!! I also took some of the fullness out of the skirt as I didn’t have enough fabric, it is supposed to have about another metre in width, but I am pretty sure that might swamp me.

Now I just think I need to make a crinoline to go underneath – have you seen Rachel’s tutorial?  Also, storage top tip from Dolly Clackett via Twitter is to roll and bag them, not hang them so they keep their fluffiness.


Thanks for holding the challenge Julia, it was super fun and now I can channel my inner Trudy goddess!!


24 thoughts on “Mad Men Challenge – the Trudy Dress

  1. Your dress is fab! I do like the fabric, and the belt is great. I can see how the front vent would have been an issue, makes me wonder what the pattern designer was thinking!

  2. I am glad you chose Trudy's dress; she is one of my favourite characters on Madmen. Finding the perfect pattern was 'meant to be' and I really like your dress and how it turned out.

  3. Gorgeous! I love this! You really rock shirtdresses– it looks amazing on you! But I can't imagine another meter of fabric in that skirt– wow, that would be VERY full!

Leave a Reply to BusyLizzie Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s