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Betsey Johnson Fall 2014: Street Sirens

Johnson, center, appears with her granddaughters after showing

Johnson, center, appears with her granddaughters after showing her Fall 2014 collection during New York Fashion Week on Wednesday. Feb. 12, 2014. Credit: AP / Bebeto Matthews

Inspiration:  Hotness and yeah more hotness.  Yep, Johnson’s invitation featured a red hot water bottle with a message that blared, “It’s cold outside.  Betsey’s hot.”  Likewise, her runway program, edged in flame graphics, showed a red burner on a stove and touted the message once again:  “Betsey’s Hot.”  Her concept?  Rihanna meets "American Hustle," and Johnson opened up her very deep bag of '70s tricks to underscore the notion.

The vibe:  Wild and kind of wonderful.  We’ve covered Johnson’s runway romps for years but this one – wow.  Kooky, hootchie and all-out fun with a finale, (to underscore the hotness) featuring two bare-chested firemen with fake fire extinguishers and loud sirens blaring in the background.  One downer, they seemed to have held the show for a late-arriving Paris Hilton, who sauntered onto the runway and to her seat after the lights were down and the show about to start.

Lust-o-meter:  There was plenty of fun stuff here for the younger set – little vinyl poodle skirts, hot pants topped with animal print sweaters, sequin suits in red, brazen yellow and red faux furs, and the mini-est of all minis in a variety of iterations. We liked these best when worn with a longer piece like a flowy snakeskin print topper. All this was paired with array of wild shoes, boots and bags, and many looks were styled with striped thigh-high legwarmers or knee socks.

What the…?:  Oh we could go on here but we'll keep it brief -- a painted on silver bodysuit with cutouts…who wears that?  And a pair of red sparkly boots looked like it was stolen right off the set of Broadway's “Kinky Boots.”

Our take:  Spunk and spirit are always welcome in the fashion world and you can count on that from Betsey Johnson.  And P.S. – yes, she did her signature cartwheel and split for the finale with no problem.   




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