Article By Yinsana Mok
Photo credit XiaoXiao Li

Betsey Johnson has been a really great designer since the 1960’s. She has been rocking the fashion industry with her unique and original designs. Betsey spent her childhood in dance classes when she was in Connecticut. In most of her designs, her creativity and inspiration showed her past experiences from when she was a dancer. Johnson’s trademark look are sexy silhouettes, hippie inspired flowing fabrics, whimsical detailing, and most importantly, a fabulous fit.


1964 – Johnson officially entered the New York fashion scene by winning Mademoiselle Magazine’s “Guest Editor Contest.”

1965 – Landed the top designer position for Paraphernalia, which was a clothing boutique that at the time housed the hottest young London designers.

1969 – She began her foray into retail by opening a new boutique called Betsey Bunki Nini.

1972 – Johnson along with Halston, won the coveted Coty Award, and become the youngest designer to ever receive the honor.

1978 – She decided to make a dramatic change in her life. She formed a partnership with Chantal Bacon, and started the Betsey Johnson label, as it is known today. Also, in the same year Betsey and Chantal launched their first retail store in the heart of Soho.

1999 – Her Vancouver store opened marking the company’s first move into Canada where there are now four locations in various provinces.
2002 – Johnson was honored with an induction into the Fashion Walk of Fame, which honored her contribution to American fashion.

2003 – She became the top American Lifestyle brand designer.

2005 – The Signature Awards and NAWBO-NYC committee honored Johnson with the 2005 Lifetime Achievement Award. And following that, she received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Accessories Council in November 2005.

2006 – The first Betsey Johnson store opened in Japan.

2007- Betsey Johnson was also honored with the Designer of the Year Award at the annual Fashion Accessories Benefit Ball (FABB) in May.

2009- Betsey was honored with the National Arts Club Medal of Honor for Lifetime Achievement in Fashion in October.

The designer Betsey Johnson and the label, continues the fashion industry with her enthusiasm, creativity, and boundless talent that have kept her at the forefront of fashion for the past 45 years, and will continue to keep Johnson going for years to come.

In this Fall 2014 runway fashion show, Johnson’s collection was very stunning and shined through the entire show. In this image, you can see the creativeness of mix-match with the long socks and dresses. Most of her looks for fall was either with long style-socks, or long boots that went all the way up to the models’ knees.

Like always, her collections are colorful. She also paired the designs well with the accessories that each model carried. For instance, like the blue leopard-print lace-up booties, matching lady bags, etc. There was a total of 20 looks. The overall theme of this collection was “hot.”

“Making clothes involves what I like…color, pattern, shape and movement…I like the everyday process…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

As one journalist recently quoted: “If Betsey Johnson didn’t exist, we would have to invent her, simply to remind ourselves that fashion can be fun. She’s the original wild child and set to paint the town pink!”

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