Betsey Johnson Spring/Summer 2013 New York Fashion Week NYFW

Oh Betsey Johnson, you all know how much I love her, and this has been such a sad year as a Betsey fan. For those that may not know, this year saw the closing of almost all of Betsey’s stores throughout the world as a result of filing for bankruptcy earlier on in the year. This also meant that the gorgeous London store, her only Betsey store in Europe, shut down as well. I was in Covent Garden just the other day and it felt to empty without her! As a result of the latter, I wasn’t really expecting a catwalk show this year, but I was delighted to hear late on in the summer that Betsey would not only be having a show at New York Fashion Week, but a huge 70th birthday bash thrown in for good measure!

The show, which has been titled, ‘retrospective’ and highlighted the very best of Betsey Johnson which celebrated her amazing five decades in fashion with her signature bubblegum, kitsch style from the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and 00s. Betsey’s last autumn/winter collection had a very definite theme, which was very much all about the swinging 60s, but this year, oh gosh, this year was totally different! For one thing, there was no definite theme in this collection, as you would expect from a catwalk show, but many words could possibly decscribes it: fun, mad, wacky, crazy, colourful and so it goes on. For me the word that perhaps best celebrates it would be ‘celebration’. It was very definitely a celebration of all the best of Betsey, and yes whilst so many parts were totally mad and comical (miniature potbellied pig on the catwalk, racoon bag, Barbie headwear, snorkels, fish, fishing rods and prams to name a few!!). It was kind of reminiscent of Surrealism in some parts that I’m sure Elsa Schiaparelli and Dali would have been proud of, but actually I don’t think you can read too much into a Betsey show like this! Was the dollar adorned piece a subtle hint at the bankcrupty notice? Maybe, and quite possibly, but really like I said this truly was a celebration of Betsey Johnson, and she just wanted a huge party everyone could join in with to celebrate her big 70th birthday (yes I know, so hard to believe!). With ‘80s icon Cyndi Lauper performing ‘Girls Just Wanna Have Fun’ amidst girls sashaying down the catwalk in a haze of pastel and neon tulle sequins, and everything good about the decades she has been doing her thing, it really did epitomise girls just having fun!

The pieces shown last tuesday is a little look into her new moderately priced clothing line of dresses and other pieces prices ranging approximately from $90-$500.  This is a new direction for Betsey, who has recently joined forces with The Levy Group. The lower priced range can be purchased at Macy’s across America and other department stores in the US (you lucky, lucky things!), and the shoes were by Steve Madden. I’m excited to see this move, although I am still so sad about the closure of her stores. If it gives the everyday girl the chance to own something of Betsey’s then that’s nothing but wonderful. To top off the party in style, Betsey delights the audience, (or fellow party revellers!), by popping out of a life-sized cake, followed by her signature cartwheel and split, of course!

You would honestly have no idea about the kind of year Betsey has had in this show, and whilst some might say, ‘Hey Betsey’s, it’s good to have vou back!’, you’d honestly never, ever know she was gone! And she wasn’t! What is made completely clear is that she’s not going anywhere anytime soon! Betsey’s a trooper, she’s a fighter. I can’t wait to see her new reality TV ‘Betsey and Lulu’ and I fully embrace everything this new Betsey era brings!

What do you all make of it? I’ve included some of my favourite pieces above, and there’s two lovely videos for you to enjoy, one documenting the show, and the other is a fabulous interview from the ‘Wendy Show’!

All images taken from Glamour.



  1. I'm SO glad she's not going anywhere!

  2. LOVE IT. i know what you mean about her store not being there on Floral Street! :( however i have managed to find the odd BJ bag at T K Maxx stores! xo

  3. I LOVE BETSY JOHNSON she is just the definition of amazing! :) love the updates we get from your blog!

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