Donatella: Versace about ‘strong, sensual women’

Donatella Versace took the place of her brother Gianni just months after he was gunned down outside his house in Miami in 1997, but it has taken well over a decade for her to feel completely comfortable with her place in the Versace studio.

According to the guardian though, there is finally a sense that after years of turmoil things are finally getting back on track for one of fashion’s biggest labels. Donatella’s womenswear collection for the Versace show at Milan fashion week marked the arrival of the ‘Versace Siren’, a creation which has been lauded with praise. An array of white leather, chiffon and tight pleating all gave a familiar nod to the classic staples of the brand but transparent Lucite platforms and floaty chiffon dresses matched with neoprene jackets also lent an ethereal, sensual edge to the new collection.

Talking after the show, a confident Donatella - often known to shy away from the public at these occasions - described the thinking behind her designs as: ‘a mermaid arriving in New York on a summer evening, ready to conquer the city’. Franca Sozzani, editor of Italian Vogue, was quick to congratulate Donatella on her collection, describing it as ‘very Versace. And by Versace, now I mean Donatella. It is a different Versace. More extravagant in some ways, but more feminine in others. Gianni was tougher. He always said it was because he didn't have to wear the clothes – it is different for Donatella, because she does.’

Whilst Italy is in the midst of gloomy economic prospects Donatella seems to have found her voice; she explained how uncertain times called for the ‘need to be true to your brand. That is the way to survive. And for Versace that is the strong, sensual woman.’

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