Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

Mad Men: Betty Updates the Living Room


Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
4 Comments » | Published in General  |  4 Comments

“A modern Chinoiserie breakfront, a Dunbar Japanese-influenced sofa, silk Dupriani drapes, Murano vases, and a classic Drexel end table.”

-Betty Draper’s Decorator

I find set design so fascinating, especially when they completely nail the surroundings from a certain era. Mad Men takes place during such a transitional time, and it’s so much fun to see different influences showing up in the design. Here Mad Men‘s set designer explains how this breakfront set the tone for the room and everything else followed it. LOVE this bar set…

…and this stereo:

Love what I think is purple grasscloth, the orange trim on the drapes…

The art is getting a bit more abstract. Oh, and I love that Betty doesn’t care a bit about the hearth being the heart of her home…

…so she covers it up with this fainting couch:

The decor is a major part of this show, and I’m so glad that this week’s episode really gave it its due.

all images via amc.com from this video.

About Becky:
Hi, I'm Becky. I live in Atlanta. Besides acting as the Editorial Director here on Hatch, you can find me talking design over at Houzz. Make me happy — leave a comment!

About Becky

has written 1620 post in this blog.

Hi, I'm Becky. I live in Atlanta. Besides acting as the Editorial Director here on Hatch, you can find me talking design over at Houzz. Make me happy — leave a comment!


Filed under General  |  4 Comments


  1. Kitty Sheehan says:

    September 29th, 2009 at 8:02 pm (#)

    I loved this episode, the decorator was great: “Don’t tell anyone I did that”–in reference to the fainting couch.
    Loved the way she and Betty looked at each other when realizing that Don was right about moving the end table and lamp to the other end of the couch.
    Nice synopsis of such an excellent bit.

  2. Becky says:

    September 29th, 2009 at 8:14 pm (#)

    Kitty, did you watch the video? It’s linked in the post – that set designer is my new hero and has my dream job (though I could never do it as well as she does)!

    I love a lot of those Mad Men sets; I think my other favorite would have to be Cooper’s office with his Rothko painting, no shoes allowed policy, shoji screens, etc. I wonder if they’ll ever explain his obvious Japan fixation!

  3. Barchbo says:

    September 30th, 2009 at 6:21 am (#)

    I LOVE the clothing and set design on MAD MEN – without it, I would never tune in. Seriously. I haven’t watched the most recent episode yet (it’s ACL week in Austin – we’re all behind) but have heard more about the fainting couch than I did about that poor man losing hit foot to a John Deere. I can’t wait!

  4. Becky says:

    September 30th, 2009 at 6:37 am (#)

    Oh My God, the John Deere! It seemed like a shark-jumping move, or some Matthew Weiner throwback to The Sopranos, but it did serve a purpose – it showed just how shallow the industry was – that a man they had been lauding as such a genius could not possibly be effective in his job because of a relatively minor disability, and the cost of all the drinking and showboating that goes on in the office. There was a UK vs. USA battle going on*, and this really hammered it home, and of course it gave Joan the chance to say the best line the show has ever had in the waiting room to Don.

    Or maybe I just read WAY too much into this stuff!

    *if a bunch of Brits make a bunch of Americans come into work on the 4th of July, someone’s going to lose a foot!

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