Versace Womenswear A/W12

Nobody does vintage Versace better than Versace themselves but this collection was not merely a simple tap into the archives

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On the back of a successful collaboration with H&M and a return to the Paris Haute Couture schedule with the Atelier line, Donatella Versace seems to have reconciled looking to the past with her own penchant for designing for the warrior woman that she herself has also become, taking on her brother Gianni’s legacy and helming the business for over fifteen years. With Versace’s latest collection, it spoke of tenacious defiance as well as an unapologetic nod to Gianni’s final couture collection in 1997 but fortunately, this wasn’t merely a simplistic peek into the archives.

The emphasis on the hips was mostly orchestrated by metal inserts that jutted out in robotic motion or in the cut-out dresses with the suspension of leather criss cross straps placed within the body

The first look of a crucifix embroidered black velvet coat paired with fishnet thigh high boots on a model doing a paced-up club stalk with a fierce look in her eyes, heightened by the severe Rooney Mara-esque super short fringe, would set the tone for the show. Donatella clearly had dug deep within herself to touch upon that iconic collection and she did so within the modern undercurrent of the need for clothes that would protect. Of course, this being a Versace show, protective attire translated to skin tight leathers, form fitting corset dresses and chainmail variants collaged together to form an ultra vamp, ultra empowering coat of arms. The emphasis on the hips was mostly orchestrated by metal inserts that jutted out in robotic motion or in the cut-out dresses with the suspension of leather criss cross straps placed within the body.

It wasn’t all about black sheathed fem bots though as ruby red astrakhan and a vibrant yellow pepped up with pseudo Medieval lettering spelling out Versace was also a statement of bold determination on Donatella’s part. The pap-friendly dresses that Versace has become so well known for, once again got its spotlight in the final passage where slinking columns of chainmail met oozy sequined gowns. This was Versace at its shining best and marrying the past with the present has allowed Donatella to come into her own as the true warrior of this storied house.

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