SHE x Betsey Johnson
Rihanna wears pieces from designer Betsey Johnson throughout the years:
In this week’s Vintage RiRi, we will be covering another designer that Rihanna loves — Betsey Johnson. If you missed our previous post, highlighting Rihanna in the brand, MinkPink, you can catch up (here). Betsey Johnson’s designs were an absolute staple in Rihanna’s closet in 2008. But even before that year and well along into the years after that, Rihanna continued to wear pieces from her. In this post, we will revisit all of those looks.
BETSEY JOHNSON entered the New York fashion scene by winning Mademoiselle magazine’s “Guest Editor” Contest in 1964. Since then, Betsey Johnson –both the woman and the label– has constantly been moving forward and continues to keep a strong foothold in the fashion industry with her unique and original designs.
Rihanna often wore Betsey Johnson’s designs during her on stage performances. The first of which, was when she performed at the 2007 World Music Awards on November 4th in Monte Carlo, Monaco. She performed “Umbrella” in Betsey’s Spring/Summer 2008 Black Strapless Dress with a tuxedo-style bodice and polka-dot bottom. This collection was inspired by the prom attire of decades past — taking viewers all the way back to the fifties. Rihanna snagged the award for World’s Best Selling Pop Female Artist and was crowned Entertainer of the Year that night!
Rihanna attended the InStyle and Grammy Salute to Fashion event on February 7th, 2008. Rihanna arrived in a look that was her first spotting in Betsey Johnson of the year. She wore a lace, long-sleeved romper from Betsey’s Fall 2007 Collection. Rihanna rounded off this look with Jimmy Choo Fiona Heels.
On March 28th 2008, Rihanna emerged in another Spring/Summer 2008 Betsey Johnson dress. While performing at her private concert at Chicago’s Vision Nightclub, she wore Betsey’s Fuchsia taffeta and tulle Dahlia dress. This look featured the designer’s signature tiered detailing on the skirt with black sequins.
Rihanna attended the 2008 Essence Music Festival in New Orleans on the 4th of July. For this event, held at the Louisiana Superdome, Rihanna wore Betsey Johnson’s $425.00 Evening Lady Tremaine Dress. This dress features an extremely lacy floral pattern along with a cute black ribbon on the front. Rihanna accessorized with laced gloves and lace up boots as well.
Rihanna traveled to Barcelona, Spain to perform on the Spanish version of American Idol, Operaciòn Triunfo on July 9th, 2008. Rihanna took to the stage in a stylish dress that brought together both striped and polka dot prints. This Betsey Johnson dress was yet another pull from the runway of her Spring/Summer 2008 Collection. Rihanna completed this look with Jimmy Choo Edalene Gladiator Sandals. These $732.00 textured platform sandals with a 4.7″ heel, were a favorite among several celebrities –from Ashley Olsen and Vanessa Hudgens to Heidi Klum.
Three days later, Rihanna performed her smash hit, “Umbrella” alongside Jay-Z in Nigeria for the 3rd Thisday Africa Rising Festival on July 12th, 2008. For this performance, she wore a $425.00 Evening Show Lace Strapless Dress from Betsey Johnson. Her dress featured tiered ruffle detailing throughout. Rihanna paired the dress with her own belt of choice verses using the bow featured in the look above.
Rihanna was spotted in Monterrey, Mexico on January 22nd, 2009. She opted for a Skull Cotton Lycra Button Front Tank Dress designed by Betsey Johnson. This dress retailed at $285.00 and –as the name suggests– featured an all-over skull print. Rihanna completed this look with Jimmy Choo Biker Leather Flat Boots. Her boots are rugged with distressed details and buckled straps on the front and shaft. Rihanna continued to wear her Jimmy Choo boots on several other occasions as well.
Rihanna has also worn jewelry from Betsey Johnson! Later that night, Rihanna wore Betsey’s $105.00 Button Up Multi Triangle Bracelet during her “Good Girl Gone Bad Tour” concert in Monterrey.
Just a couple of weeks later, on February 5th 2009, Rihanna attended the Black Eyed Peas’ 5th Annual Peapod Foundation Benefit. She wore Betsey Johnson’s “We Love Skulls” Neck Zipper Sweater Dress. This $320.00 piece is from Betsey’s “punk” labeled vintage collection and features a unique zipper design that extends from the neck down to the entire length of the right sleeve. Rihanna finished off this look with Christian Louboutin Apollonia Black Leather Boots.
After not being seen in Betsey’s designs for a little over a year, Rihanna was spotted in Los Angeles on April 10th 2010, wearing a jumpsuit she designed. While heading to a recording studio, she wore Betsey Johnson’s Skull Thermo Jumpsuit. This $225.00 jumpsuit is 100% cotton and features a hoodie and a metal grommet snap front closure.
The pieces she’s worn from Betsey aren’t limited to just fashionable dresses. Rihanna arrived in Barbados on June 6th, 2010 wearing a pair of Betsey Johnson Retro-Style Leopard Sunglasses. These $50.00 frames feature leopard print on the front with gold-toned detailing on the corners and Betsey Johnson’s signature logo along the temple. Another feature on these glasses, is a small pink heart right on the end tip of each temple. On this occasion, Rihanna also sported a black top with Sass & Bide’s Fall 2010 Round & Round Pants. Rihanna wore pieces from Sass & Bide’s Fall 2010 Collection during a photo session in Sydney (here) as well. Rihanna finished this look with $805.00 Balenciaga Open-Toe Slingback Glove Sandals, a House of Waris Plumage Pendant Necklace and Prada’s Saffiano Fori Boston Leather Tote Bag.
RIHminder: To get a full recap on the major outfits Rihanna wore during the infamous Rated R Era, visit the Rihanna Overdose Rated R Era Fashion Recap (here). In that post you can get a detailed look at all of her performances, photoshoots, music videos, and appearances!