Exclusive Behind the Scenes with Banana Republic and Mad Men

Exclusive Behind the Scenes with Banana Republic and Mad Men
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Whether you’re more of a Joan or a Betty, we can all appreciate the amazing style, grace and elegance that the women of Mad Men possess. And thanks to the show’sFall 2011 capsule collection forBanana Republic, you’ll have no problem emulating the same 60s-inspired looks. Mad Men costumerJanie Bryant andBanana Republic’s Creative Director Simon Kneen teamed up to create a flawless 65-piece collection, which will be available in stores this Thursday, August 11th. Consider it something to hold you over until the long-awaited new season of Mad Men premieres next year.

We were lucky enough to get an exclusive behind-the-scenes glimpseat the lookbook shoot a few months back, where we fell in love with everything from the vintage-inspired bags and shoes in bold leopards and rich reds to the perfectly tailored suits that will have your man looking like Don Draper in no time. We also got the chance to chat with Simon Kneen about the collaboration, the women of Mad Men and why the collection was such a perfect fit.Click through to see some of the playful fun that went on between modelsMartha Streck andRyan Kennedy, Janie and Simon on shoot day, as well as the full lookbook.

What about Banana Republic reflects the sensibilities of Man Men?
I think the fact that there is this dressing up. I think people are looking at the show, the suiting of the guys and the dressed up feeling of the girls and the beautiful dresses it feels right for the time. I know our customer loves to dress up. We are a suit destination for him and we’re definitely a dress destination for her, and playing up those things feels like a great, easy tie in for us.

Why are the two such a great fit?
It’s just a wonderful fit. And then the color palettes themselves the grays and the browns for the men’s suiting, all these great neutrals, and all of these brighter, more fun and kitschier colors in the womenswear,which we feel inspired by and we know customers will love.

Why does the look of the Mad Men era have such staying power?
Because it’s so chic and fun so tongue-in-cheek. When you see the beehive hairdos and you see the makeup and the cinched waists, what kind of women doesn’t want to feel like that? It’s sexy and it’s feminine.

Which Mad Men girls do you think women at Banana Republic would most associate with?
I think Joan’s a bit of a make-or-break type of character. And I do think Betty everybody adores her and she’s such a great character in the series and a great character for people to imitate in life.

As you’re moving through the 60s decade on the show, how will that reflect the new collection?
I don’t know, Janie [Bryant] and I talk about that. She’s moved so much more onto the show and there are subtle changes happening of course in fashion, as we move out of the Camelot era. And of course Janie bases it on real people it’s not the high end of fashion so she’s certainly not using Mary Quant or what was happening in London during the roaring 60s, but those influences are coming into mainstream, and that’s why she’s so brilliant at what she does. She’s able to capture some of those very small details and bring them back into how it was changing the real person’s wardrobe of the era.