Things We Miss: The Cosby Show Fashion
By Victoria Uwumarogie & Veronica Wells
When “The Cosby Show” hit the airwaves few could have imagined that it would eventually come to represent a cultural phenomenon. For the first time ever, America was introduced to a successful, two parent black household. It was clear that Bill had a message to send. Black families could be well-off, dignified and funny all at the same time. Of course when you’re trying to paint a certain type of picture of “the black family” you can’t neglect your attire. While the Cosby cast ensembles never distracted us from the plot or the humor of the show, we definitely noticed. Take a look.
If you ask me, Denise was the Huxtable with the best style, hands down. She was extremely ’80s with her style, but added her own twist to popular fashions by going the black bohemian route. Her structured hats, love of oversized blazers, and eye-catching jewelry always had us excited to see what she was going to wear each week.
Ok so the photo above is not indicative of Theo’s style. It’s a hot mess. If you don’t remember this moment, you’ve never seen this episode because it’s unforgettable. It’s such an iconic fashion faux pas moment that I had to include it in the slideshow. Don’t let the fact that Theo is Cliff’s only male heir make you believe that he wasn’t fresh. Theo wanted to be a ladies man and therefore had to be fly. Just like the rest of his family members he wasn’t one to shy away from color.
Who says children’s clothes can’t be fly as they want to be? Rudy Huxtable’s looks were all about color and playfulness. Momma Claire was hooking her up with funky prints, bold denim jackets, and fun sweaters that rivaled Cliff’s. The essence of her look was a lot of mixing and matching of prints as well as fabrics.
Vanessa wasn’t on Denise’s level when it came to the funky fresh presentation. But don’t sleep on the middle girl child either. You could always catch Vanessa in contrasting colors, jackets and lots of layers.
Momma Clair takes the cake as one of, if not the best dressed television mothers of all time (*Kanye voice* “of all time!”) Clair was a mother, lawyer and wife so her wardrobe had to be versatile. Whether she was business professional or casually comfy Clair always managed to look elegant.
Heathcliff, or Cliff to those who knew him like that, made the Cosby sweater iconic. His thick colorful sweaters with their dizzying prints were what it would look like if Coogi sweaters and Cross Colours had a baby. Just all frantic prints and colors everywhere. But aside from those knitted wonders, Cliff was also a fancy suspender wearer. What a fly guy.
The youngest and spunkiest addition to the show, until the twins, had to have clothes that matched her fire cracker personality. Olivia was always draped in super bright, loose fitting clothes because a little girl has got to move.