NEW YORK — Betsey Johnson has inked a deal with Anaheim, Calif.-based Lunada Bay for a swimwear collection set to bow at retail in April.
The initial collection will include about 80 pieces, comprising separate tops and bottoms, which will range in wholesale prices from $22 to $40 for each piece.
While the styling is still being developed, the line will include signature Betsey Johnson motifs such as lace, polkadots and leopard and rosebud prints.
"I have always loved lingerie and swimwear, and have long been inspired by those categories," said the quirky designer. "It's a really natural development for me, and the move to swimwear comes at a time when I have established more of an identity and my customer has grown. Licensing just seems to click for me now."
Distribution is planned for department stores, specialty shops and boutiques. Lunada executives declined to divulge sales, saying the collection has not yet been unveiled.
Swimwear is the latest of a slew of products and licensing deals the designer has signed in recent months as a strategy to build her brand and extend her name into new arenas including jewelry, belts, watches and eyewear. Lunada Bay also makes swimwear under license for Hurley and Lucky Brand, and has its own brand, Becca.
Johnson joins a parade of fashion designers and brands who have recently entered the swim category, including Michael Kors, Carmen Marc Valvo, Diane von Furstenberg, St. John Knits and Juicy Couture.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast