HOUSEWARMING: Girls came out to the Sunset Tower Hotel in their Betsey Johnson best to meet the designer, who recently became bicoastal.
The meet-and-greet Thursday evening, poolside on the hotel’s terrace was an all-pink affair. Pink flamingo votive candles floated in water and a pair of girls wearing black-and-white polka dot dresses danced around the space on roller skates while another pair floated in the pool on inflatable flamingos. Meanwhile, Betsey Johnson clothes, shoes and jewelry from the spring collection were on display for guests to peruse.
Johnson, nearly an hour late to her own bash — wearing her favorite designer, Vivienne Westwood — lamented the L.A. traffic, something she made a point of trying to avoid when she settled on her new digs in Malibu. The designer’s living in a rental until construction on the house she bought is completed. She’s guessing a move-in by December for the holiday.
“The move happened because of my daughter and my family,” Johnson said. “It was just time to go. It was after maybe the last blizzard. I’ve been in the city for 55 years…I don’t miss [New York] for a second. Not a second. I went back for a couple of days and I don’t need to be there for my work at all. I’m mostly doing appearances.”
Johnson said the change in environment is welcome and it’s a different scene on the West Coast.
“California is really kicking with the labor here and the jeans and the swimwear,” she said. “Everything they make is just amazing. But we deliberately moved to Malibu. I thought if I ever moved to L.A., I would die. I would just have to spend all day on the road and I don’t drive out here. I only drive on [Pacific Coast Highway]. I’m a bad driver and I just can’t do those five-lane highways. I think New York is truly more of the classic fashion capital of America. Big deal. Who cares? I just love not going to the garment center. And I love better air.”
All of it’s great for inspiration, Johnson pointed out. She teased about a “great project cooking” that she described as “very L.A.” but demurred and said she couldn’t elaborate just yet.