Hot! Not a Gordon Gartrell

Pattern: Vogue 1234

Year: Today’s Fit by Sandra Betzina

Fabric: cotton stretch jersey $13

Notions: None-just some white thread I already had

Time to Complete: 1 day to cut and 1 1/2 to sew

Total Price: $13

Wear Again: yes

So I’m sure you’re all thinking I picked Laura Ingalls or one of the Waltons. I didn’t. I picked Denise Huxtable. Kazz did such a great job with her last year so here’s mine for this year. I know my outfit may not look very Denise-y but it’s inspired by her and worn like me.

I picked this pattern because of the unique way it drapes at the bottom. This pattern uses letters for sizes¬† instead of numbers and looks more intimidating than it actually is. I don’t think I’d recommend it for a beginner though. My only gripe is that the finished pattern measurements are not printed even though it says they are. I took a guess at the right size. I would have been pretty upset if I’d guessed wrong. After I had washed and dried the fabric and cut the pieces out I discovered 3 tiny holes. My instructor had me cut out fabric and place it over the hole on the wrong side of the fabric and seal it with fusible tricot then hand stitch around the hole. She said it was good to keep a set of Sharpies in multiple colors handy to help blend the edges in. I didn’t need to do that but will keep that in mind.

When I thought of Denise I not only thought of prints but also volume and layers. I had to use fabric with a 2 way stretch so a lot of the nicer prints were out. This print reminds me of a giraffe. Perfect for representing Denise’s time in Africa.

She influenced my style so much as a teen. I had sunglasses like that and wore all kinds of hats and since I already had a thing for over sized men’s blazers I figured that made us soul sisters. I also used to wear floor length circle skirts and tied them in the middle so they looked like harem pants.

I woke up this morning and got to work adding a little more drama to the dress. I twisted a scarf into my hair to create this updo. I had this sheet leftover from a photo shoot. I folded it in half then wrapped it around my waist and pinned it at the front and then pulled the sides to the back and secured them there with another pin. It’s got this bustle look to it which is another of my obsessions. The belt really takes me back to my high school years. I had a similar belt in black that I wore over a stonewashed dress that had over sized shoulders and a long zipper that ran down the middle.

The only thing missing is the chunky jewelry. This would have been great with wooden bangles and some funky necklaces.

As usual I had a lot of fun wearing this today. I just know there are going to be some great posts and pictures this week. I can’t wait!







Gina Clark is a girl from Texas living in the Midwest. She has been sewing most of her life but swears every few months that she is giving it up for good.


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  1. Gina, I love this! It’s Beautiful and so Denise.

  2. I think you captured Denise, she was my favorite character on Different World and the Cosby’s.

  3. I’d totally forgotten about Denise but I always liked her off beat vibe and I think you nailed it.

    • Thank you. I almost did Laverne from Laverne and Shirley. It would have made a better picture but I just wasn’t in the mood for a pencil skirt and top. Maybe next year.

  4. Such a pretty dress. Denise was a great idea.

  5. Great photos and very interesting inspiration – love it

    • She is an interesting inspiration. I think back then it was nice to have someone to look up to that didn’t fit the mold.

  6. What a great oufit, you’ve got a wonderful sense of style : ) I loved Denise way back when but wanted to be Claire. When I lived in LA I’d see Lisa Bonet out in the ‘real world’ every now and then and I think she would TOTALLY wear your outfit!

    • Thanks Loran. You know I used to say that the one celebrity I would like to meet was Bill Cosby. I liked that he was funny but clean. Claire was awesome and its funny because I think her character has helped me at times in my mothering.

  7. Beautiful!!!

    Every time I go to sew sleeves I think of that episode and am terrified my sleeves will come out like that! LOL

  8. Love it and I can totally see Denise in it as well as you shining through. I loved her individuality. Love the little snippets of stuff you’re learning from your instructor. Your creations have such variety and ingenuity. I think you ought to treat yourself to some chunky jewellery though….especially if you get your part-time job! Good luck with the job hunting and making it through summer break! Your hair with the scarf up-do looks fantastic btw!

    • Thanks Tempest! I’m trying to learn as much as I can in class to get my money’s worth. I’m a more experienced sewer than the rest of the class so sometimes instead of working on a garment I’ll pick a detail I have trouble with and have her walk me through it. I’m starting a tailored blazer now. I’ll have to sign up for another class to finish it but that’s OK. I love my Sew Weekly community and you ladies have helped me see that it’s important to have others to talk to that share your interests. This class gives me people to chat with while I sew and learn more.
      I work as a Wardrobe Consultant but since I don’t advertise I don’t have many clients. It works out well because I’m busy enough. I am applying for part time work at a clothing store for the summer. We’ll see how that work out.

  9. Just gorgeous Gina I googled this pattern to see the lines and to understand the way the pieces come together, I love the drape, I’ll be jotting down this number for sure. I can certainly see Denise wearing this outfit, I love the extra added details and your photos are stunning.

    • I thought about putting in a picture of the pattern but I was too lazy to do it. I’ve seen some versions on-line with stripes that I really liked. I may try that sometime in the future. There was no stripey fabric this time around but I;m sure some will pop up sooner or later.

  10. Awesome! I can totally see Denise in this. She was always in long, drapy things. Fantastic job!

    • Thanks! I could see her in it too but in a better print. I was a bit limited. I’ll use this pattern again when I see a better print.

  11. Great outfit! You captured Denise well and yet, it looks modern and so wearable. I love the faux-bustle addition.

  12. Lovely, Gina! The long slim dress out of that pretty print, looks amazing. I like how you had fun with the scarf and the sheet. The additional pieces really took it to another level. Excellent photos too!

  13. I love this!! It is VERY Lisa Bonet! That belt kicks ass, too!
    You worked you magic on that pattern. I would never give it a second look based on the envelope. They should link to this post on their site!