Designer of the Week: Betsey Johnson

“I like the everyday process and the people, the pressure, the surprise  of seeing the work come alive walking and dancing around on strangers.  Like red lipstick on the mouth, my products wake up and brighten and  bring the wearer to life, drawing attention to her beauty and  specialness, her moods and movements, her dreams and fantasies.”

– Betsey Johnson
You have most likely commented on the way she dresses: bright, whacky, youthful. And also about her age. She dresses like a teenager, not like the 70 year old that she is. She’s known for her blonde, straw-like hair, her bright lipstick, and her signature cartwheel that she performs at the end of her fashion shows. Betsey designs for teens and twenty year olds with a sexy punk style. She uses lot of pink and black with ruffles, lace, and stripes. Along with clothes, Betsey also designs jewelry, shoes, and other accessories. I like her jewelry the best. It’s very different from jewelry of other brands. Her jewelry is fun and there’s always something that makes you smile or laugh. There are lots of animals, skulls, bows and hearts. And we can’t forget the rhinestones!!
Jewelry courtesy of
Betsey Johnson was born on August 10, 1942 in Wethersfield, Conneticut. When she was young, she enjoyed art and dancing. These interests led her to fashion designing and Syracuse University. After college, she won a guest editor spot for Mademoiselle magazine. She later worked for Paraphernalia, designing clothes. Later, she left Paraphernalia to work with Alley Cat. In the 70s, Betsey struggled selling her style and went to designing kids and maternity clothes. Her fashion career rebooted with the start of the punk movement in London. She started her own brand (Betsey Johnson) with the help of a former model, Chantel Bacon, and has many stores around the world today.

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