Don Draper’s Plaid Sportcoat at the Movies

Jon Hamm as Don Draper on Mad Men. (Episode 6.12: "The Quality of Mercy")

Jon Hamm as Don Draper on Mad Men. (Episode 6.12: “The Quality of Mercy”)

Vitals

Jon Hamm as Don Draper, Madison Avenue ad man and movie buff

New York City, October 1968

Series: Mad Men
Episode: “The Quality of Mercy” (Episode 6.12)
Air Date: June 16, 2013
Director: Phil Abraham
Costume Designer: Janie Bryant

Background

Don Draper has always turned to the escapism of the movies in times of crisis or loneliness, most notably (and humorously) in “The Good News” (Episode 4.03) when drunkenly accompanying Lane Pryce to a screening of Gamera: The Giant Monster in during the men’s lonely week between Christmas and New Year’s Eve.

Two seasons later, Don is slightly less lonely with his new wife Megan (and his new upstairs mistress, Sylvia) but still frequents the movies whenever he can. “The Quality of Mercy” finds Don and Megan seeing Rosemary’s Baby when they run into Ted and Peggy, claiming to be on a client research mission.

What’d He Wear?

This outfit was called out by AGENT as one of the 10 Outfits Encapsulating the Appeal of Don Draper Style, described as “a black cashmere turtleneck that complements his dark green plaid sports coat perfectly.”

Don’s single-breasted sport jacket is dark olive wool with a large-scaled blue, taupe, and black Glen Urquhart check. The lapels are slim with small fishmouth notches and some degree of edge swelling, rolling to the top of the two-button front. The short double vents complement the shorter fit of the jacket, a trend from the late ’60s that has cycled back into fashion fifty years later.

"Oh, hello."

“Oh, hello.”

Amanda Marcotte noted the eerie similarities between Don’s outfit and something similar sported by John Cassavetes in Rosemary’s Baby, the very movie that he and Megan went to see. Tom and Lorenzo took it a step further on their excellent, style-focused Mad Men blog, spotting the possibility that Don’s outfit has been influenced by Ted’s modern style: “Don was mimicking Ted so clearly, right down to the turtleneck and plaid jacket. That’s a signature Ted Chaough look and Don is standing there, wearing it in dark grey and black, like a figure of judgment against him.”

Perhaps subconsciously ashamed for being seen by Ted while mimicking his look, Don sadly doesn’t wear this cool plaid sport jacket again.

Dehydrated after an afternoon of salty popcorn, Draper turns to his trusty old Canadian Club upon returning home.

Dehydrated after an afternoon of salty popcorn, Draper turns to his trusty old Canadian Club upon returning home.

Don has a habit of wearing checked sport coats to the movies. In “The Flood” (Episode 6.05), Don wears a houndsooth jacket with a yellow button-down summer shirt when he takes his son Bobby to see Planet of the Apes.

Seven episodes later, during this cool late October afternoon that finds Don with Megan at the movies, he layers more warmly with a black cashmere turtleneck sweater under his plaid jacket.

HAMM

Even with the then-fashionable short fit of the jacket, not much is seen of Don’s sandy brown flat front trousers beyond the straight leg and plain-hemmed bottoms. These may be the same trousers he wore when lounging around his apartment in a wrinkled white dress shirt in “A Tale of Two Cities” (Episode 6.10).

Less is seen of his dark belt, shoes, and socks, but they are all likely black. His leather shoes appear to have closed lacing on the front and are probably black oxfords.

Especially with his raincoat on, Don’s look also evokes Steve McQueen in Bullitt, also released in 1968 and thus very contemporary to this particular episode. Like McQueen, Don wears a knee-length khaki balmacaan-style raincoat with a long single vent. It has raglan sleeves and a fly front. Assuming it’s the same raincoat he wears earlier in the season (and there’s no reason it shouldn’t be), it has five tan buttons, slanted hand pockets, and plain cuffs.

Megan makes it clear to Don that she would never want to live in a creepy old apartment building as they stroll into their modern, million-dollar penthouse apartment.

Megan makes it clear to Don that she would never want to live in a creepy old apartment building as they stroll into their modern, million-dollar penthouse apartment.

Don spends much of the scene with his raincoat draped over his left arm, concealing his wrist and thus making it unclear if he’s wearing his classic stainless Omega Seamaster Deville wristwatch.

How to Get the Look

mm612plaid-cropDon Draper makes the most of his afternoon date to the movies by channeling both an on-screen character and a co-worker he runs into at the theater.

  • Dark olive Glen Urquhart check wool single-breasted 2-button sportcoat with slim fishmouth-notch lapels, welted breast pocket, straight hip pockets, and short double vents
  • Black cashmere turtleneck sweater
  • Brown flat front trousers with belt loops, side pockets, and plain-hemmed bottoms
  • Black leather belt
  • Black leather oxfords
  • Black dress socks
  • Khaki balmacaan-style raincoat with 5-button concealed front fly, raglan sleeves with plain cuffs, slanted hand pockets, and single back vent

Do Yourself a Favor and…

Buy the sixth season… and definitely check out Rosemary’s Baby!

The Quote

Honestly, I’m more troubled by the idea of using Rosemary’s Baby for a children’s aspirin ad.

Footnote

And while we’re on the subject of Rosemary’s Baby, Mia Farrow tweeted this image in February to announce the upcoming birth of her granddaughter 🙂

One comment

Leave a Reply

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

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com 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 )

Google+ photo

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

Connecting to %s