By  on April 30, 2007

Two contemporary brands, Betsey Johnson and Rebecca Taylor, are launching legwear in a bid to get in on one of the hottest trends for fall and holiday.

Johnson has become partners with Leg Resource Inc. to produce a legwear line under the designer's signature label. The collection joins Johnson's other categories — ready-to-wear, footwear, handbags, watches, swimwear, eyewear and fragrance — and is due out for the 2007 holiday season.

"You have to have that basic legwear in a retail operation and we always wanted to connect through licensing with someone and, sure enough, we did," Johnson said. "The whole short length trend is huge right now. It looks great, and ever since the Sixties, we started to look at girls' legs, and who doesn't want to look at girls' legs? We are in a massive mini legwear time zone and we're trying to kick something in that's exciting."

The Betsey Johnson legwear collection will be available at better department stores, select specialty shops and Betsey Johnson boutiques nationwide. Fashion hosiery, leggings, legwarmers, over-the-knee and knee socks, and trouser and crew socks will be featured in the line. Retail prices will range from $18 to $55 for tights and $10 to $20 for legwarmers, knee-highs and all socks.

In the girly, playful aesthetic of Johnson's rtw, styles for Betsey Johnson Legwear include baby fishnet hosiery, as well as sparkled Lurex and lace. All tights will feature a jacquard, hot pink waistband and Johnson's signature rosebud in the front. Socks will come with the Betsey Johnson logo and heart printed on the soles.

"You can really look great in exciting legs," Johnson said. "Fashion is at a point where you can take a great pair of hose and look very fresh and very modern, and very hip."

Rebecca Taylor will launch her legwear collection for fall. Unlike Johnson, Taylor — who is producing the line in-house — is executing only one style of ribbed tights, available in seven colors for fall and in four sparkly hues for holiday. Both collections, wholesaling from $45 to $65, will be available at Bergdorf Goodman and at neimanmarcus.com and Shopbop.com.

"We felt that we needed to sell the hosiery wholesale in order to offer our customer the complete look," said Taylor's partner and chief executive officer, Beth Bugdaycay. "When Rebecca was styling the line for our fall 2007 presentation, she felt a real need for the hosiery to complete the look for two significant reasons. She wanted the color palette of the hosiery to match our collection exactly, rather than pairing a basic black back to color, and to provide a practical solution for fall's short hemlines."

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