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With the country in the midst of the worst recession in decades, many Americas are finding comfort in clothing, martinis and parties inspired by the award-winning retro TV series "Mad Men". Now on its third season, the fashion-conscious show which depicts the rise of the advertising industry in New York and its ego-driven competitive players has sparked a revival for the tailored suits, skinny ties, pearl necklaces and pencil skirts of the early 1960s.
"(It's) a chance to step outside of ourselves and come to a place in society where people answer the phone politely and wear fedoras to work or gloves while driving ... it's civilized!" she added. "Mad Men" follows the lives of sexist, unfaithful men and unhappy suburban wives living in a stylish world during an era when the civil rights movement was fighting to end segregation and achieve racial equality.
The New York Times newspaper said the series offers consolation to a generation beaten by "skyrocketing unemployment, plunging retirement savings and mounting home foreclosures". Even the characters' chain-smoking and cocktail guzzling seems to add to their appeal. Capozzi said it is definitely an escape for them. The International Advertising Association New York (IAA), which is planning a "Mad Men" Christmas party this year, plans to deal with the smoking issue by offering candy cigarettes to guests.
Retail stores have also joined the craze with Banana Republic and Brooks Brothers launching lines inspired by the series. "It's definitely influencing designers," Cohen said. "It's becoming more and more mainstream".