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Versace: Yesterday, today and tomorrow

Set to drop a new collection as hedonistic, iconic and indulgent as the label itself, Versace is in for a standout year. The brand’s fun dalliance with nostalgia, alongside its usual decadent prints and striking suiting, is Donatella to the core - but the weighty shadow of Gianni’s untimely death underscores the name with its storied past. This year marks the 21st anniversary of his passing, but through the label’s uncompromising confidence and unwavering dedication to glamor, it honours the designer and his life: never shy, never apologetic and always with strong females in the spotlight.
By Chloé Sayen

Versace’s revered role in the industry is in large thanks to its consistency, empowering women, unafraid of loud patterns and figure-sculpting silhouettes favoured by those who want to leave a lasting impression. The bright, purposely brash pieces showcased in glossy 90s editorials would slot as seamlessly into today’s wardrobes as they did then. A case in point is the glowing gold medusa heads that have long been a calling card for the high-octane brand, with Greek mythology and baroque an inspiration for Gianni, and still a key player in the brand’s new chapter with his sister at the helm. These stop-and-stare motifs have been synonymous with the brand since its inception, and are as coveted and cool now, to a new generation of fashion-followers, as they are to life-long devotees.

As integral as the medusa motif is to the label, the brand’s affinity with the supers is just as powerful, and relevant as ever. Last year’s runway saw the biggest names taking center stage – Naomi, Christy, Claudia, Helena and Cindy, no surnames necessary - in a considered move. A nod to Gianni’s foresight and the instrumental role he played in elevating them from muses and models to industry power players: the world went wild. A revolution at the time, Gianni changed the game, setting the bar and upping the ante in an industry where models were no longer happy to just sit pretty. Alongside the original Glamazons? Natalia, Natasha and Anja, as well as Kendall, Gigi and Bella ¬– a statement that reflects how both past and present generations are connected to Versace – with its founder at the very core.

The instantly-recognisable logo is as in-demand now as it ever was, with the brand itself only going from strength-to-strength with each passing season. Taking on the ever-changing industry with a fearless determination and a true Italian twist on style, Versace’s history is what makes it what it is today, with Donatella taking inspiration from the past to pave a strong future – and we’re in it for the long-haul, yesterday, today and tomorrow.

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