For years, Versace’s call-sign was a barely-there dress, crafted for the well-heeled woman with the confidence to reveal a serious amount of flesh. Yet, in recent seasons, Donatella Versace has changed her stance on what constitutes sensual design, relying more and more on sporty, covered-up creations with a tougher edge. For Fall/Winter 2017, Versace emphasized both the power suit and a powerful message of inclusivity, fulfilling her re-branded feminist agenda. This is rumored to be her last show, with Riccardo Tisci supposedly in the wings poised to take over any moment, and if that’s the case, she is leaving on a high note.
A parade of Donatella clones in heavy black eye makeup stormed the runway, boasting broad-shouldered suits in keeping with one of the season’s hottest trends. Logos and slogans were subtitled throughout the collection – the former found on thin straps of delicate sandals and the latter splashed across beanies, down the length of scarves, and on the hem of skirts bearing positive message like “Courage”, “Loyalty”, “Unite”, and “Equality”. They acted as the finishing touch on multi-layered looks that proffered cozy sweaters, translucent skirts, cropped hoodies, button-ups, leather skirts, and corrugated leather trousers. It was a blend of sportswear, après-skiwear, and menswear, and each look helped strengthen Versace’s message – these women weren’t just strong and confident, they were downright intimidating.
These women weren’t just strong and confident, they were downright intimidating.
But it wouldn’t be a Versace show without a few house signatures, so at the finish, there were more than a few slinky, sensual looks found on sequined slip dresses, mesh minis with strategically placed ruffles, and silky frocks with twisted fronts that emphasized the waist line. While the brand has certainly changed focus over the past few seasons, it has not forgotten the original Versace woman and her need for a seductive wardrobe.