The Style Evolution of the Women of Mad Men

To say we're looking forward to new episodes of Mad Men would be a bit of an understatement. We're obsessed with the genius character and plot development, the subtle yet on-point commentary on the shifting society of 1960s America, flawless period set designs, and oh, yeah, the clothes. Since the AMC series began in 2007, the fashion of Mad Men has made an undeniable cultural impact-- more than four decades after the styles were originally popular. The past several seasons of runway shows have seen more than a few designers heavily inspired by the retro drama, and series costume designer Janie Bryant has put out two extremely well received Mad Men collections at Banana Republic. But the fashion of Mad Men isn't just about the time period. As the lives and stories of Don, Betty, Peggy, Joan, and Sally change and expand, so do their styles. In anticipation of Season 5's premiere this Sunday night (which we've literally been waiting for our entire lives), we've taken a look back at some of our favorite Mad woMen through the years, from the early '60s onwards. We can't wait to see how Mad Men mania pans out as the 1970s creep up-- but you can bet we'll all be talking about it (and teasing our hair and wearing pencil skirts and winged liner) come Monday morning!
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Nora Crotty
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To say we're looking forward to new episodes of Mad Men would be a bit of an understatement. We're obsessed with the genius character and plot development, the subtle yet on-point commentary on the shifting society of 1960s America, flawless period set designs, and oh, yeah, the clothes. Since the AMC series began in 2007, the fashion of Mad Men has made an undeniable cultural impact-- more than four decades after the styles were originally popular. The past several seasons of runway shows have seen more than a few designers heavily inspired by the retro drama, and series costume designer Janie Bryant has put out two extremely well received Mad Men collections at Banana Republic. But the fashion of Mad Men isn't just about the time period. As the lives and stories of Don, Betty, Peggy, Joan, and Sally change and expand, so do their styles. In anticipation of Season 5's premiere this Sunday night (which we've literally been waiting for our entire lives), we've taken a look back at some of our favorite Mad woMen through the years, from the early '60s onwards. We can't wait to see how Mad Men mania pans out as the 1970s creep up-- but you can bet we'll all be talking about it (and teasing our hair and wearing pencil skirts and winged liner) come Monday morning!
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To say we're looking forward to new episodes of

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As Betty Draper Francis (

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Peggy Olson (Elisabeth Moss) goes through the most noticeable physical (and occupational) changes throughout the series. Starting out Season 1 as Don Draper's lowly new secretary, Peggy sports a mousy ponytail and outdated silhouettes. In spite of the naysayers (and there are a lot of them!) and a ridiculously secretive pregnancy, she manages to rise quickly in the ranks at the Sterling Cooper agency, first becoming a copywriter and is eventually promoted to the creative department at Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce. Peggy's style evolution reflects her personal growth as well as the changing times: Her pony gives way to a teased bouffant, her outfits start to actually match, and she even rocks the odd pillbox hat.

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Joan Holloway Harris (Christina Hendricks), the femme fatale office manager at SCDP, has the most unchanging style of the lead characters in Mad Men. Her wardrobe seems to reflect that "If it ain't broke" mentality: Her clothes are always extremely sexy, fitted, and often constructed of wool or ponte, and

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Sally Draper (Kiernan Shipka), the daughter of Don and Betty, has really started to come into her own. As her character gained importance in the second season, her changing style followed suit. Sally started out as a typical little kid with a seemingly awful mother-- how sad does she look in that nightgown! But by season 4, Sally had chopped off her hair and started wearing little shift dresses. And began seeing a therapist, because, clearly, people who cut their own hair are mentally unstable.