Old Acquaintance

The Spring 2001 Shows

Be that as it may, one suspects that more than a few Jacobs-clad ladies will find their way to a Guggenheim opening in his outfits, but never mind. If it's '80s you're after, you're better off with Alice Roi, one of three up-and-coming designers presented in Moët & Chandon's "Designer Debut" event. Remember the old rule that people who are old enough to have worn a particular style the first time around probably shouldn't be wearing it again? Roi's fans, and she appears to have many, needn't worry—they're certainly young enough for her Dynasty-inspired yellow-and-white diagonally striped blouson minis, tiny flared skirts, dropped-waist dresses, and other homages to Brenda and Brandon Walsh.

Lest you think '80s mall rats and '40s chorines, ragged punks, and veiled widows are the only options for spring 2001, Betsey Johnson not only dug up another female archetype, the Playboy bunny, she populated her catwalk with Hefner employees. Noticeably thicker of thigh and hip than typical runway models, the various Misses January, August, etc., sported stunningly huge breast implants, stuck floppy ears over garish wigs, executed a repertoire of lascivious bumps and grinds, and all in all looked more like denizens of Wigstock than objects of heterosexual desire. Though they exhibited great spirit as they wriggled and sashayed down the runway dressed in naughty negligee dresses, glittery harem-girl ensembles, crinoline-petticoated cotton-tailed sundresses, and other Johnson confections, there was something a little sad in the end about these rabbits, forced to rely on a wink and a grossly distended bosom to make their way in a rough world.

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