With an old key that dangled from a strand of pink ribbon, Betsey Johnson opened
wide the doors to her closet for all the world to see. Out from Pandora's box
sprang an array of mini-Betseys: All Johnson's models wore assorted hair
extensions, a lightning-bolt tattoo on their chests, and plenty of lace teddies,
net tutus in neon colors, striped Clamdiggers, Lurex-knit mini-tops and an
abundance of corsets.
In Johnson's universe, a party dress is printed with pterodactyls and sweeping
birds; sweaters have different-colored sleeves, and velveteen coats are thrown
over camouflage wool-knit dresses. Trousers for a pantsuit are cut low enough to
allow a sliver of acid-green underwear to peek out, and jackets are snapped as
close to the body as possible. Modern-day cancan girls cavort in emerald,
sapphire and fuchsia brassiere tops, layered transparencies, and glittering
heels that are part Wizard of Oz and part Times Square after dark.
"These are clothes that I love," said Johnson simply. "I wanted to create a
whole new wardrobe for myselfand hopefully, for many others as well!"