Talk about a tough year -- make that year and a half -- for Betsey Johnson, the queen of outrageous fashion (and fashion shows): Her fashion label went bankrupt last year, but she made a comeback this year, releasing a lower-priced line of dresses and accessories. She also starred with her daughter, Lulu, in a reality show on the Style Network. Now, two days before her latest fashion show, it was announced the Style Network would be folding. Still, the (fashion) show must go on.
And go, go, go, it did, with Betsey’s trademark quirkiness and chill-it’s-just-fashion attitude. The program was done up like a Rx pad from “Dr. Betsey Johnson,” and the outfits were medically named -- “Tylenol Tara” (a full-skirted calico party dress), “Benadryl Barbie” (a ruffly mini), “Florence Nightingale” (a one-piece white bathing suit with big floppy hat) and “Nurse Jackie” (a white jumpsuit with a metal hip-hop “Betsey” necklace almost as big as a license plate).
Top marks went to the black tulle strapless with leopard-print shrug, or the sparkly charcoal strapless with massive tulle skirt.
All the models wore finger-in-the-light-socket pink party wigs and danced and vamped their way down the runway. The point here, as always -- and no matter what the headline Betsey is bearing at the moment -- is to have F-U-N. And so her finale consisted of a row of models showing off vibrant boy-short undies, labeled on the bum Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and so on, one for each day of the week (ya gotta actually produce those, Betsey -- they’re hilarious), and then out pranced the designer, at 71, with her two grandchildren in tow. Yep -- there goes grandma, doing her signature cartwheel. And then -- a split.
If you didn’t have fun at this show, you were unconscious. No other excuse.