Versace’s Urban Jungle


Donatella Versace chose a new venue for this season’s show, which should have been the first indication of a new look for the house. We sat opposite a front row filled with some of our other fashion favorites, Riccardo Tisci, Naomi Campbell, and Christopher Kane in Versace’s much larger, dimly lit show space. Before the first look hit the runway, a spoken word track titled “Transition” by Violet and Friends commanded our attention: “This song is dedicated to women everywhere regardless of color, religion, sexuality, or what sex they were born with.”

Then Raquel Zimmerman opened the show in what one would perceive to be Donatella’s version of a sexed-up power suit (minus the pants). We were told that the her chosen theme for the season is the ‘urban jungle,’ which begins to explain not only the delightful olive and khaki tones, but why we saw far more daywear on the runway than usual; though the red carpet hits that Versace is known for were still there—this is a collection you’ll want to run out and buy and actually have the chance to wear. “This is a collection for the way women live their lives today, mixing tailoring with sportswear and effortless glamour,” Donatella added to her show notes. We think that the urban jungle dwellers of Paris and New York would tend to agree.

Putting the show’s more casual nature aside, we have to note the brilliance in the way that Versace was able to really own its new take on wardrobe staples. Perhaps the best comparison, for those who know, is Phyllis Nefler’s reimagination of the Girl Scout uniform. Donatella took to utility jackets, polo shirts, and pinstriped fabrics with a similar sense of determination—the key is in the tailoring. Acid leopard and zebra prints, sometimes combined in the same look, were treated to more relaxed silhouettes in favor of fitted dresses. The result is definitely more conducive to the urban lifestyle alla Versace, which can—as Dontatella points out—at times feel jungle-like.

To complete her new look, enter some of the highest platforms the Milan runways have ever seen. If we may point out, this does save the ever-so busy urban woman a trip to the tailor to hem her new Versace pants.


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