Mad Men and Modern Design

Mad Men thrives on midcentury modern designGrab a martini, light a cigarette, throw on your best suit, and take a seat in the Eames chair because the hit television drama ‘Mad Men’ returns Sunday, March 25 with a special two-hour season opener.

Off the air for nearly seventeen months, the award-winning drama follows the life of troubled ad-man Don Draper and his firm, Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce, amidst a sleek yet tumultuous 1960’s backdrop.  The show’s unflinching portrayal of the golden age of advertising and the decade’s iconic fashion & design trends garnered a rabid fan-base over its first four seasons.

The show’s set design often showcases classic 60’s trends and the youthful exuberance of the era’s design, particularly in the Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce advertising firm’s new office.  As fans will remember, the fourth season saw Draper and his colleagues at Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce move into a brand-new midtown Manhattan office in the Time & Life Building with an ultra-modern décor style.

The new offices were outfitted primarily in modern and minimalist interior design styles.  Burnt orange sofas, Eames chairs and pieces by classic modern designers Knoll and Eero Saarinen dominate the space, lending a swingin’ 60s vibe to the show’s edgy new office locale.  The office is “bursting with color” reflecting “the bright optimism of 1960s design” comments the LA Times.

The Mad Men interior design is the result of extensive research performed by the show’s set designer Amy Wells.  Wells studied early decorating books, magazines, and period-relevant catalogs from major outlets.  “I want to make Mad Men look real,” says Wells in an interview with Interior Design.  “It’s important that they be imperfect, not iconic.”

Mad Men will return Sunday March 25 for a two-hour season premiere on March 25, 2012 at 9PM EST on AMC.  To learn more about Mad Men, visit

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