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Betsey Johnson's Message: "Girls Are Fun and Awesome"

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For a lot of women, Betsey Johnson served as a kind of fashion gateway drug. Her promtastic dresses appeal to teenagers who are just starting to fall in love with the idea of personal style, and those teenagers remember her fondly even when they grow up and move on to the more sophisticated likes of Wang and Lang.

That's why the news that Johnson's New York stores are closing has struck such a nerve—it's like hearing that your favorite high school teacher just retired. In a sweet Rookie Mag essay, novelist Emma Straub describes how she got hooked on Betsey as a kid.

It wasn't just the flattering cut of the clothes that I loved, with the bell-shaped sleeves and the high, small waists. It was the entire philosophy, which was something along the lines of "Girls Are Fun and Awesome and Let's Dress Up Every Single Day."
If you're sad about the closings, go read the whole thing; it's adorable. Got your own Betsey Johnson story? Our sister site is collecting them at
· Betsey Johnson Will Close Its Four NYC Stores After All [Racked NY]
· Betsey 4 Ever [Rookie Mag]