At Versace, Safety Pins, Lady Liberty, and the Dress That Spawned Google Images

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Like Versace’s Spring/Summer 2018 show, Donatella Versace once again paid tribute last night to her late brother and the Italian label’s founder, Gianni, who would have been 72 years old yesterday, for her Pre-Fall 2019 show last night.

Held at the New York Stock Exchange, Versace’s first-ever runway romp in the Big Apple featured major faces (Kaia Gerber opened; Emily Ratajkowski walked) and reduxes of some of the house’s greatest hits from the mid-‘90s and early aughts, including iconic patterns, prints, silhouettes, and motifs. Of note: the notorious Medusa safety-pin dress made famous in 1994 when Elizabeth Hurley wore it to the premiere of Four Weddings and a Funeral (Vittoria Ceretti wore a reinterpreted version) and a riff on the jungle-green silk chiffon number Jennifer Lopez sported at the Grammys in 2000. Amber Valletta, who debuted the original dress on the Versace catwalk that same year, closed the show in a reimagined version of it, with “Love Versace” heart prints inspired by Jim Dine’s designs for Gianni’s Upper East Side mansion replacing the palm tree motifs. The naval-grazing plunging neckline, which inspired the birth of Google Images, however, remained.

The love for New York was on full display: In addition to a see-now, buy-now T-shirt blending Milton Glaser’s famous „I Love NY“ logo with Versace’s Medusa emblem, a giant gold replica of the Statue of Liberty torch sat front and center on the catwalk. „I wanted to pay homage to this incredible city, bringing the sartorial heritage of Milan and fusing it with the energy of New York and its eclectic nature,“ Versace said in a press release.

The front row, naturally, was packed with A-list faces, with everyone from CR cover girls Kim Kardashian West and Paris Jackson to Uma Thurman and Diane Kruger.

Versace isn’t the only European brand to show in New York. Tomorrow, Chanel will present its Metiers d’Art Pre-Fall 2019 collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art—the French house’s first New York runway show in more than 10 years. Louis Vuitton, meanwhile, will stage its Cruise 2020 show in New York in May.

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