Most people dream of what it would be like to meet their heroes, wondering what they will say and how they will act in that very moment. I was fortunate enough to have ample time to think of what I would say, if I was fortunate enough to have the chance. I spent weeks with the ladies of Flair mulling over what I would write in my essay for the contest to meet design legend Betsey Johnson.
I wrote from the heart, and made sure that my passion for fashion was evident in every word. Luckily, my essay was picked; otherwise I definitely would not be blogging about it, how depressing. Betsey Johnson came to Boston in support of the fight against breast cancer, as she is a survivor herself. She teamed up with South End Health Center to raise money for patients, and held a fabulous fashion show of her latest collection at Cyclorama, also in the South End of Boston. However, a few hours before the show Betsey made a stop at the Museum of Fine Arts, to speak with a variety of creative people, students and professionals alike, in a small setting. As my reward for winning the essay contest, I was able to attend this meeting during the day and was on the guest list for the show at night.
I did not know what to expect when meeting Betsey Johnson, and to say she was one of the sweetest of people to encounter would be an understatement. She was extraordinarily warm to us in person, and was willing to answer any question we could think of. She walked out onto stage in the MFA auditorium with two giant suitcases of her own personal collection of vintage clothing, rooting all the way back to her earliest designs from the 1960’s. Her most candid moment was definitely when she proceeded to tear open the suitcases and scatter the pieces all over the floor. In this moment I gasped and wanted to jump on the stage and pick them all back up! She on the other hand was not bothered a bit. I sat back in my seat amazed as she described what it was like to spend time with people like Andy Warhol and Twiggy. At the end of the program, she said hello and signed my essay “xoxo Betsey”, this was one of those “it” moments in my life thus far.
The fashion show was quite the spectacle and was wonderfully pink, just like Betsey. Her new collection featured mostly dresses in wild animal prints with pops of bright color, which was exhilarating to watch parade the runway. It all really came together for me when Betsey did her well noted cartwheel at the end of the catwalk when the show came to a close. I could not believe that I was actually there. Me? Little intern Joy? It seemed too great to be true! Now that all of the excitement is over, I can look back and value what an amazing experience it was to meet such an influential designer. Although you will never catch me in a pink tutu with leopard print leggings, I will now forever be an avid fan of Betsey Johnson!
The one and only Flair intern