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Versace floats on the Milan Borsa, with frocks not stocks

Published
Feb 22, 2019
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Versace went to the stock market Friday night in Milan, for a runway show and not a flotation. 

The Versace family sold the luxury fashion house that bears its name to American group Capri last September for $2.1 billion. This Friday night in Milano Moda Donna, Donatella staged an epic, liberating show, her first post-acquisition catwalk in the Italian fashion capital. 


Versace - Womenswear - Fall/Winter 2019-20 - Milan - Photo: Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana


They haven’t traded shares inside the Palazzo Mezzanotte in over a decade, but there was plenty of hue and cry in this collection, with designer Donatella showing heaps of pep.
 
Referencing all the house's codes – from Medusa heads to suggestive safety pins – and starring two generations of uber models, this was a great performance from Donatella, in a show bursting with highly saleable merchandise.

Bella and Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner and Edie Campbell represented the new gang; Stephanie Seymour and Shalom Harlow the veterans.
 
The only face missing was Amber Valletta and she was sitting front row at the undulating catwalk; made of golden tubular stools finished with the Medusa.
 
"Luxury versus grunge; grunge with an attitude. Grunge for people who do sport and are fit. Jacquards laminated. Very tailored. Edges are done to perfection, very edgy, couture grunge," explained Donatella in her trademark low octaves, in a pre-show preview with a dozen local and international editors.


Versace - Womenswear - Fall/Winter 2019-20 - Milan - Photo: Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana

 
Featuring trenches with Roman Imperial silk print sleeves; perfectly cut bitter orange knit dresses finished with satin S&M bras; or parkas in assemblages of herringbone and heroic house prints – worn over a great new Donatella T-shirt decorated with an image culled from a photo shoot by Richard Avedon for the house.
 
"Richard must have shot over 30 campaigns for the house, and it was very kind of his foundation to give permission to use the image. Plus, I just loved the idea of a logo that read Avedon for Versace!" said the blonde bombshell designer.
 
The posh grunge appeared in lime green sweaters riddled with holes and paired with faux crocodile kilts; or tartan wool slit skirts topped by clinging knits – with jagged edges - finished with multiple gold baubles, brooches and pendants. Saucy medallion tights and a divine perfecto the leather of which looked ironed.
 
An uber color moment. One passage featured canary yellow tights; a turquoise sky-print silk cocktail;a  pink and green check padded coat and a rose beanie. And a sultry moment too – with moiré velvet columns and cocktails, movie star looks for Versace fans.
 
The cast marched out under a giant golden safety pin; the invitation was a pack of real ones. The show, collection and accessories – fabulous clunky clusters of gold and crystals – were all a huge hit.


Versace - Womenswear - Fall/Winter 2019-20 - Milan - Photo: Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana

 
Basking in the moment, John Idol, the CEO of Capri, which in turn owns Michael Kors and Jimmy Choo.
 
"I couldn’t be happier. That was an amazing show by Donatella; and I have an amazing partner in John. Life is good," he said, tapping the arm of the house’s of Versace’s UK-born CEO, John Akeroyd.
 
In a word, this is one acquisition which looks like it’s going to do very well.

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