With the Mad Men in it's final season, fans are already beginning to feel nostalgic about the show that made the 1960s "real" again. A big part of what works for the show is the fact that the set designs accurately capture the essence of the decade, but not in a hokey, in-your-face kind of way. Interior Design got the rare opportunity to visit the many sets of the show and spoke with the show's creator Matthew Weiner about his team, namely the production designer Dan Bishop, and set decorator Claudette Didul.
In the interview, Weiner discusses the process of designing the offices so that they made sense for time, worked with the script, and filmed well. He credits Bishop with an important location choice for Joan Harris' space: "it was Dan who thought of putting the character Joan Harris’s office in the center, with doors on both sides. I said, 'People are going to be cutting through all the time.' So we made that a part of the story. The doors are also glass, so she has no privacy at all. The story becomes a physical space."
Weiner also spoke about a missing feature at the Sterling Cooper agency that was intentionally left out of the design: "The biggest decision we made was not to do cubicles at Sterling Cooper. It’s the ’60’s, and there were many offices with cubicles. But when Dan was designing, I thought, If we’re going to a new office, we’re going to do a new storytelling thing. So Dan came up with the account-executive lounge, where we can accumulate characters in a public space. They can pass through it, which is important. We don’t have to start every scene with someone knocking on a door. We don’t get trapped in an office. Although, if we do, there are windows with these incredible backdrops."
For more of the interview and to see the amazing photos of the sets, head over to Interior Design.