Betsey Johnson draws a certain creative energy from personal appearances — a point she proved Wednesday night at Lord & Taylor's Manhattan flagship.
"I try to have one second of really being there with every customer that shows because it's a huge effort [for customers] to come to a store and show up with such devotion and love and enthusiasm, and buy the perfume and be so drop-dead crazy about me," said the irrepressible Johnson, who not only hugs but dances around with customers. She was speaking after the appearance, which garnered 200 people and an estimated $7,500 in sales for her eponymous women's fragrance. "It's like a fountain of youth to me. It's such a trip. They give me a hippie love energy that keeps it very exciting."
Such an attitude is typical of Johnson, whose boundless enthusiasm often shows itself in cartwheels down the runway at her ready-to-wear shows. "I've never wanted to be one of those designers on a pedestal," said Johnson. "I knew 42 years ago that I wanted to be the gal-next-door designer. I was terrified of the pedestal designers. I could never do that. I wanted to be the girlfriend designer."
And Johnson is at work on a new fragrance. While she kept mum on most of the details, she revealed that, like her first, her next scent was inspired by a vintage fragrance bottle. "We're waiting to try out the next name to be copyrighted," she said. "Every name you can think of is copyrighted! I really wanted a Lulu [her daughter's name] and a Layla [her granddaughter's name], a name that I can personally relate to — but it's amazing what's taken!"
She's also designing her next rtw collection — "it's based on what I call my granddaughter and my male friends," she teased. "It's very cornball. I can't tell anymore because I don't know if it's copyrighted!"
Johnson is also working on a host of licensing opportunities, including a new legwear line, and color cosmetics are in the discussion stages. But she doesn't plan to go overboard. "[When it comes to my licenses] I think about 'what am I missing in my retail stores?'" Johnson said. "But it's crucial for me to be a big-time part of the licensing, the get-to-know-you, the get-my-drift. Pierre Cardin had 159 licenses….I hope we cap off when it's way too much for me to be involved in."Johnson also credits her licenses for shaping her upcoming rtw collections. "I'm making my regular collection more like my licensing. The licensing is the true-blue me, and the collection has taken a different turn — but it's all coming back home to mamacita. We're all one now — there has to be a unity. Licensing has really shown me what the best of me is like — it's brighter and happier and younger and less expensive. I love my work more than I ever have before. Isn't that a trip?"
@tradesy is turning the concept of a showroom upside down with its new space in Santa Monica. Here, the company plans to hold events, art exhibits and a showcase rare fashion pieces like this Louis Vuitton boxing set. Get all the details on Tradesy’s first showroom on WWD.com. #wwdnews
Spotted last night at the @erdem x @hm launch event: Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones, Kirsten Dunst and Selma Blair. The party, which took place in LA, also marked the opening of their pop-up shop. “I was interested in creating a collection that wasn’t in any way disposable. It was about pieces you’d create and keep forever, things that have a permanence to it,” designer Erdem Moralioglu said. #wwdeye (📷: Katie Jones)
Renee Zellweger in yellow in 2001 and again in 2017. Chosen as one of the 12 @pantone Leading Spring Colors (and dubbed “Meadowlark”), it only makes sense that the bright hue stands the test of time and is making a resurgence this season, seen already on stars like @blakelively and @gigihadid. (📷: Donato Sardello & @rexfeatures) #wwdfashion #tbt
Dior’s 70th anniversary celebration continues with a new exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. “Christian Dior,” which is scheduled to run through March 18, takes a look at the founders tenure from 1947 to 1057 and feature 40 designs. Pictured here is an evening gown from the Ailée, fall 1948-49 haute couture collection. #wwdfashion (📷: Brian Boyle)
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews