Sunday, March 18, 2007

The Evolving Versace

10 years ago, an Italian fashion designer was murdered in front of his Miami resident and his death was not only mourned by his family but also the rest of the fashion community. While his sudden yet tragic passing prompted a big question - will his name survived in the fashion world that comes and go with the current trend, it went against the odd.

Indeed, his name successfully survived with the help from his sister's takeover as the creative director. Like a fairy tale, the name would no longer be something foreign to any discerning fashion fan and that name is Gianni Versace. Should the world ask me to name a fashion label that evolves from time to time then I shall say it's Versace because since Donatella, his sister, taking over the role of creative director, the world began to re-fall in love with the brand.

If the 80's to the late 90's saw the brand emphasizing on the usage of its Medusa head logo, garish colors, sexually-oriented designs, eye-popping ad campaigns, and the strong association of the brand with homosexuality and pompadour, the later version of Versace saw more subtle changes that suits the changes that took place within the fashion world where more and more people have substituted their old colorful and loud clothes for the quieter and sophisticated ones.

On a neon-lit stage, models paraded 54 pieces off the upcoming Fall/Winter 2007-08 collection for both men and women in Milan, Italy last February. Staged in front of a strong audience made of media members led by the inevitable and indestructible Anna Wintour of US Vogue, Versace store and multi-label boutique or department store buyers, and a handful of its loyal customers, the new collection exhibits the sense of soberness without being so dull.

For the women's collection, which was shown on back to back basis, the pieces that a fan should include in her upcoming Fall/Winter wardrobe includes dress with knee-length hems, and a few number of evening dresses. The one in silver lurex halter dress with metallic beadwork embellishment detail on the neckline down to the bust is a real beauty and eye-opening while the black short hem and sweetheart-neckline dress with separated white flap details on the lines remains the classic choice of day dress for one to wear.

For menswear, the color black dominates the color palette, followed by some rusty maroon and ocher. Sexy body-hugging double-breasted leather jacket, tailored suits with double-breasted top, straight and ribbed collared sweater with ribbed hemlines and sleeves, and coat-like tuxedo were among the pieces paraded and considered as the must-haves within a man's closet in the incoming bitter cold months of Fall up to the Winter. On certain jackets and tops, one might expect a bit of graphic touch with the adorning neon stripes of electric blue and brownish tones.

The Gianni Versace Fall/Winter 2007-08 Collection will be in stores this September while the new Spring/Summer 2007 Collection is ready for grabs at all Gianni Versace stores worldwide.

*Photos by Marcio Madeira for

Versace - Ground Floor, Suria KLCC, Jalan Ampang, Kuala Lumpur; Adorn Floor, Starhill Gallery, Jalan Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur.

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